The New-Found Song of the Lyre

Tribute to Valentyn Sylvestrov

Meeting with the composer
in conversation with Constantin Sigov


Silvestrov’s creative development is quite emblematic: experimentation in the ‘60s, a period of creative crisis with its need for silence and meditation, and the ensuing development of a new language that looks back into the past without becoming conservative in a sort of post-romantic microclimate reminiscent of Mahler. With a view to recomposing what had been broken. His music is imbued with silence, its beauty suspended in time with its dazzling intuitions and melodic tension. “An avant-garde Romantic”, an exquisite master of delicate sound combinations, supple transitions and well-proportioned architectonics, Silvestrov makes melody a central element: while contemporary music tended to sacrifice melody to algid complexity, the composer from Kiev restores it as the very core of music.