Brilliant Classics is proud to present Canto Ostinato XXL, a recording that brings a new perspective to Simeon ten Holt’s minimalist composition by adding a Romantic organ to the work’s original scoring for four pianos – a combination never before attempted. The result is the most beautiful and harmonious of sounds, one that captures Canto Ostinato’s emotional variety and depth through building on the sweetness and simplicity that inhabit this acclaimed composition, first performed in 1979.
Canto Ostinato, scored for four grand pianos, is the quintessential example of Ten Holt's groundbreaking minimalist style, one of his most well-known and critically-acclaimed compositions. Constructed using short cells that can be repeated an indeterminate number of times by performers, the music is hypnotic and emotionally moving, taking listeners on a journey through musical landscapes…
Cristóbal Galán was born in Madrid (Spain) around 1625; nothing is known about his musical education or the early stages of his career. Between 1653 and 1664 he acted as "maestro de capilla" in various churches. From 1664 to 1667 he was director of the choir at Segovia Cathedral, and then he was appointed director of music at the convent of the Descalzas Reales. The queen regent wanted him to become director of music at the royal chapel, but this met strong resistance. It was only in 1680 that he obtained this position. It didn't bring him much luck, as he felt that he wasn't appreciated enough. Payments were also often delayed, mainly because of the bad economic state of Spain in the last decades of the 17th century. Not only Galán, but all musicians suffered from this situation.
Simeon ten Holt was a Dutch contemporary classical composer. Ten Holt was born in Bergen, North Holland, the Netherlands, and studied with Jakob van Domselaer, eventually developing a highly personal style of minimal composition. Van Domselaers influence on ten Holts musical philosophy was considerable, with the younger composer picking up van Domselaers interests in the links between music and visual art, in musics relationship with mathematics, and in the use of the piano as a principal instrument in his compositions.
“Eleven discs, fourteen hours of music. After the successful issue of Minimal Piano Collection I-IX Jeroen van Veen & friends have recorded works for 2 to 6 pianos, from - among others - Ten Holt, Eisenga, Meijering, Glass, Pärt, and Reich. With swinging effects, transformations and challenging rhythms…."
Simeon ten Holt is a Dutch composer born in 1923. He studied with Jakob van Domselaer and in Paris with Milhaud and Honegger, then went through various compositional phases, first struggling out of van Domselaer's tonal influence, then becoming serially tonal (Berg obviously proves that this in no contradiction in terms), e.g. striving to organize the tonal material according to serial principles.
Very recently passed away at age 89 Simeon ten Holt was the Icon of Dutch minimalism. His works for multiple pianos include his most famous work, ‘Canto Ostinato’, which gained cult status with a large audience not necessarily familiar with traditional classical music. The slowly shifting repeated patterns in Ten Holt’s music have a hypnotic and hallucinatory effect on listeners, during concerts which may take several hours. Dutch pianist Jeroen van Veen is “the leading exponent of minimalism in Holland” (Alan Swanson in Fanfare), a close acquaintance of Ten Holt, the ideal interpreter of his music.