First performance: April 1997 – Budapest
Conductor: Peter Eötvös
Gergely Ittzés, Gregory Vajda
Curiosity about what deviates from the norm is a prerequisite in Peter Eötvös compositions. This is evident from, amongst other things, his renunciation of standard dispositions of the orchestra on the podium. In Shadows, sounds form objects in a space through which they move, stand out against each other, cast shadows and become shadows themselves. The key to understanding this imaginary theatre of “sound movements” lies in the selection of instruments and in their staggered arrangement on the stage, which follows a precise plan.
The small orchestra is divided into four parts. Two groups of strings are placed on the left and right of the stage, forming a distanced stereophonic layer of sound. In front of them, on the left, is the woodwind section, and on the right the brass: both groups face away from the audience and with their backs to the centre of the stage, where the protagonists of this “sound scenario” are to be found: flute and clarinet.