The Unique Voice of Algirdas Martinaitis

In the ONDINE album Seasons and Serenades – Works for String Orchestra (ODE 1398-2) we were introduced to the music of the Lithuanian composer Algirdas Martinaitis.

The artists featured – all Lithuanian – are nicely led by Modestas Barkauskas at the podium of the St. Christopher Chamber Orchestra with violinist Ruta Lipinaityte and harpsichordist Daumantas Slipkus doing some musical heavy lifting throughout.

The compositions range from the orchestral suites The Three M‘art Comedy Seasons, Altizarra, Serenada panelei Europai, Rojaus paukščiai , and two French language songs exquisitely sung by soprano Asta Krikšciunaite. Throughout the album, the unique voice of Algirdas Martinaitis is present, now comedic in tone, now lyrical, at times tonally anchored, at others defiantly dissonant, quite often rhythmically hyperkinetic, never at rest, always vibrantly intriguing.

If I assume correctly, the music of this respected artist is often heard in Europe but rarely performed in our country. What a shame, for this iconoclastic composer’s works would certainly enrich the repertory of our often timid musical institutions.

Rafael de Acha                  ALL ABOUT THE ARTS