Op dinsdag 15 november speelden wij Morton Feldmans Piano, Violin, Viola, Cello (1987) in Felix Meritis. Masterstudent muziek-technologie Rutger Muller schreef een recensie voor de website Bachtrack. “I am very thankful to have been able to experience this piece live. I believe that the Ives Ensemble delivered the music as it was intended.”
Felix Meritis, located in central Amsterdam, is west Europe’s oldest concert building. One of its concert series for fall 2011 is “News from the Front – 250 years of ‘modern’ music”, offering performances by three renowned ensembles: the Van Swieten Society, the Ives Ensemble and the Asko Chamber Choir. On a wintry tuesday evening I cycled to Felix Meritis to witness the Ives Ensemble playing ‘Piano, violin, viola, cello’ (1987) by Morton Feldman (1926-1987). The Ives Ensemble was founded in 1986 by pianist John Snijders to perform unconducted chamber music from the 20th and 21st century.
Feldman is one of the most significant names in 20th century classical music. His work was shaped by the experimental New York School of composers and the New York arts scene. A friend of avant-garde composer John Cage, he met artists like action painter Jackson Pollock and abstract painter Philip Guston, with whom he became close. Feldman drew inspiration from ‘abstract expressionism’, a raw and rebellious artform that put New York City at the center of the western art world after World War II. Works from this movement expressed an impulsive directness, rather than a chronologic story. The same can be said for Feldman’s compositions.