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Dialogues: Luciano Berio's Sequenzas cycle


As part of the 2023 edition of the Darmstädter Ferienkurse (Darmstadt Summer Course), a workshop was held on Berio’s Sequenzas I, II and XIV, featuring Angela Ida De Benedictis, Claire Chase, Lucas Fels and Gunnhildur Einarsdóttir, with the collaboration of Giovanni Cestino.

During the workshop, each of the three Sequenzas were discussed in depth, combining performance practice with the direct analysis of archival sources. The workshop was an occasion for reconsidering the relationship between performance practice and musicological research, as complementary and “applied” disciplines interacting with each other. In this sense, the corpus of Berio’s Sequenzas offers a perfect “working environment” for testing the longstanding issue of integration between theory and practice.

The workshop was opened on August 12, with a Performance-Lecture on Gesti for solo recorder (1966) (click here). This piece—a sort of “extra” in the Sequenzas cycle—was analyzed as a methodological case study to unpack some of the recurring issues the genesis, performance practice and publishing history of Berio’s solo compositions. After that, the focus was on Sequenza I for flute (August 12), Sequenza II for harp (August 13), and Sequenza XIV for cello (August 14). A final discussion followed on August 15.

The workshop is organized in collaboration with Centro Studi Luciano Berio and the Paul Sacher Stiftung, Basel. More info on the official website of the Darmstädter Ferienkurse: https://internationales-musikinstitut.de/de/ferienkurse/kurse/berio-sequenzas/