2022



14.06.22 SECANS


Composition for prepared piano. First performance by pianist Miha Haas, Ljubljana.



06.05.22 COLORED SHADOWS; CD PRESENTATION


By Katarina Radaljac, link.



21.04.22 SUB


First performance: Sub, for tuba and prepared piano, an onomatopoeia piece composed for Slovene Composers Society, by Uroš Vegelj (tuba) and Žiga Stanič (piano).  




02.02.22 UNIVERSITY OF NOVA GORICA ANTHEM


22 year old university anthem by Žiga Stanič, a symbolic tune composed for Nova Gorica University in 2000; first performance in male octet version. Performed by Slovene Octet, at the occasion of a new rector inauguration ceremony.




17.01.22 SHUT UP!


Composition for mixed choir, performing with mouths closed. First performance by Ljubljana Music Academy Choir / conductor Alenka Podpečan / in Cukrarna Ljubljana, January 17th, 2022.



COLORED SHADOWS, CD / BARVNE SENCE


Slovene Composers Society CD, works (2016-2021) by Žiga Stanič.



2021



24.12.21 ZPOD PERESA SLOVENSKIH SKLADATELJEV


On December 24, 2021, radio program Ars, interview on Puzzle Symphony and Bitcoin Overture,  cantata, Spring suite, Esophagus battle: link.




27.10.21 CRACKS OF TIME / PERFORMANCE WITHIN 200TH ANNIVERSARY OF SLOVENIAN NATIONAL MUSEUM


Cracks of time / Razpoke časa / performance by Boštjan Gombač (multiinstrumentalist) and Žiga Stanič (prepared piano) on October 27th, at the celebration of National Museum of Slovenia's 200th anniversary, Ljubljana.




15.09.21 A TRIP, FOR SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA


Performed by Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra in Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana (Symphonc Matinees GMS)



A ROBOT


Short piece for piano solo - for children. Onomatopoeia of a robot, commisioned by EPTA, published in Virkla magazine, 2021.



14.09.21 A TRIP, FOR SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA


Performed by Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra in Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana (Symphonc Matinees GMS)




10.09.21 PRIPRAVLJENI, POZOR, ZDAJ! / READY, STEADY, GO!


Composition for prepared marimba, using many extended techniques, onomatopoeia and movable sound clusters. First performance, September 10th, 2021, Novo mesto, Slovenia, by percussionist Simon Klavžar.




03.09.21 SLOVENIAN OCTET - ŽALOSTINKA / MOURN SONG


Piece for male octet, dedicated to Slovenian Octet. Very straight and simple text, repeating: "When you close your eyes, can you hear my voice?" - in Slovene language. First performance at Kogojevi dnevi, Kanal ob Soči, September 3rd, 2021



02.06.21 SLOVENIAN PHILHARMONY - YOUTH CONCERT


Žiga Stanič, moderator: musical performance linking text.

ŽIGA STANIČ

EVENT ARCHIVE


BITCOIN OVERTURE


This is a virtouso symphonic piece. Its basic pattern is a melodic line, which resembles a Bitcoin cryptocurrency price chart: the pitches represent the purchase values. Number of instruments, playing this melody at one time, represents the market depth. Uninterrupted melodic line consists of short phrases, played alternately by different instruments, building a chain, similar to blockchain technology system regarding subsequent blocks of data. Though, within the Bitcoin overture, rapid movement is interrupted 3 times, pointing to the relativity of time, e.g. "slow motion snapshot". Beside the price chart imitation, classical harmonic material is used to present investor's sentiment and the global trading euphoria with short citations of national anthems, respectively.



RIMA 21 / RHYME 21


A composition for mixed choir and organ on a famous text by Michelangelo Buonarotti, dealing with the question of death. Text is sung is bilingually, originally in Italian and translated into Slovene language by Matej Venier. Musical themes include the s.o.s Morse pattern, as well as tone-clusters, changing into classical harmony chords and backwards.



MEDENINA IN PATINA - CERKNO BAND WITH ZEITGEIST


CD Zeitgeist, performed by the Cerkno wind-brass band, is published and presented within program Ars.




SHUT UP !


A short piece for mixed choir, singing with mouths closed, exploring many ways of expression, which may be given through a simple voice "m". Whether it may be negation or inability to say something with open mouth, absence of will and power, struggle for doing something that cannot be done. The choir expresses all that using many extended vocal techniques.



PUZZLE SYMPHONY


Puzzle Symphony is a polystillistic symphonic piece. It reflects information-saturated circumstance of the present, together with individualism, which is further intensified in the environment of the Covid pandemic. A jigsaw puzzle of irregularly shaped tiles with a drawn part of the picture formed at the end of the assembly — in its acoustic image — it combines many small building blocks, same size defined musical sequences, which are drawn into the final image. Since the operation of a large symphonic group of musicians is not possible during a pandemic, an ensemble is also organized as a jigsaw puzzle too. Instrumental sections and individual musicians can perform physically separated, through a digital audio-visual connection between the musicians, who, in addition to the musical thematic material, also represent the pieces of the puzzle. They are united by a meter, which is in the same ratio all the time. The Puzzle Symphony is a response to the global restrictions regarding the current pandemic. It embraces them and at the same time gives symphonic musical creation a new impetus. The context of the sonata form movement comprises an exposition with 21 themes, the pieces of the puzzle. Individual tiles - short five-bar musical phrases - can be mixed and arranged at will in any sequence, which are combined and interconnected in the development section. The reprise is a suspension in the form of a single monolithic image, holding one long single melodic line. Reprise is no longer fragmented into individual particles, but they can still be observed within it. Composed in January 2021.




2020



RAZPOKE ČASA / CRACKS OF TIME


Žiga Stanič with Boštjan Gombač, streaming from Maribor - Narodni dom, on December 15, 8PM: link.



IZPOD PERESA SLOVENSKIH SKLADATELJEV


On December 4, 2020, program Ars, interview on Shadow cantata, Spring suite, Esophagus battle: link.



RAZPOKE ČASA / CRACKS OF TIME


Live performance on August 25, 2020, Kromberk castle, Solkan, at the Musice dal Mondo 2020 Festival. Boštjan Gombač, folk woodwinds and tidldibab, Žiga Stanič, prepared piano. Link.



SLOVENSKE LJUDSKE METAMORFOZE / SLOVENE FOLK METAMORPHOSES


For piano solo. Was broadcast on the Slovene state holiday, the Statehood Day, on June 25, 2020, audio & video-stream. Slovene Folk Metamorphoses are stylistically polar and are intertwining between simple Slovene folk tunes and postmodern sequences. The design of this piece resembles a suite, but it is condensed into a single monolithic sentence. The title "Metamorphoses" derives from the composer's process of constant stylistic transformation. This is not about aesthetic conformism, but rather about deliberate distancing from the monostylistic orientation. Slovenian folk metamorphoses deliberately rely on aesthetic pluralism, as they are designed as a composition in which potentially every listener will find a language, with which he agrees and one with which he may disagree. A common feature of a larger group of people, and of a nation in general, is that it is structured into several groups, e.g. by political conviction, by capacity of intellectual or spiritual dimensions. Whether uniting of the different is consistent or not - whether it is good, meaningful and appropriate - that is a question of the nation stemming from the same folk songs. On the occasion of Statehood Day, the musical piece appeals to all who know Slovene folk songs and at the same time sense the sound of the twisted and mysterious paths of their interactive disordered thoughts, through which they always return home, to their peace. Link to Radio Site - Link to YouTube.




KANTATA SENC / THE SHADOW CANTATA


For mixed choir and orchestra, text by J. W. Goethe, slovene translation by Božo Vodušek. The main plot considers the Dr. Faustus Prologue Nr. 1, however, the choir as well as the orchestra, do considering amount of onomatopoeia, approaching to each other. Orchestra plays the narration sounds, while the choir often counts as a self-dependent instrument or a part of the orchestra. There are some aleatoric parts where the extended-technique effects, performed by the choir as well as by the orchestra, come out clearly, and impose the textual frame of the poem.




2019



WPP - THE WELL PREPARED PIANO /  WPK - DAS WOHLPRÄPARIERTE KLAVIER


Series of pieces for 1 & 2 prepared pianos. The piano setting offers a diverse acoustical "orchestration", since each piano is divided into many small prepared parts and in this way, it allows a rich acoustical polyphony. Issued on a CD and available through digital distribution, iTunes, etc. Presentation in the radio show Glasni novi svet on November 20, 2019. Link.



PRIPRAVLJENI, POZOR, ZDAJ! / READY, STEADY, GO!


Composition for prepared marimba, using many extended techniques, onomatopoeia and movable sound clusters. To be first performed in September 2021 [moved due to pandemic], Novo mesto, Slovenia, by percussionist Simon Klavžar.



ZEITGEIST


A piece for tidldibab (Divje Babe flute) and brass/woodwinds, comissioned by Cerkno band. First performances were on December 21, 25 & 26, 2019, Gorenja Vas and Cerkno, Slovenia. Links: MMC, Idrija.com, [3], [4], [5]



24th INTERNATIONAL FESTIVAL JAZZ CERKNO 2019


On May 16, Črna luknja / Black hole, was performed by Boštjan Gombač and The Slovenian Philharmonic Brass Ensemble at the festival. Link. A long-play record of the piece was issued at the time of the event. Link to the digital distribution of the piece. [1]



ORIGAMI - KONCERTNI ATELJE DSS


On May 15, Origami, for guitar, violin and double bass, will be premiered at Kogoj Hall at DSS, Society of Slovene Composers, at 19:30. Link. YouTube.



ROSTRUM 2018 - SHARP EAR 4


on the recordings from the 65th international composers' tribune The International Rostrum of Composers (IRC) in Budapest 2018, where Stanič's Piano Concerto was presented, with musicologist dr. Gregor Pompe. Link to the March 13 (8PM) radio show page and to the programme note.

OJ SLAVLJENEC DANAŠNJI / SLOVENIAN HAPPY BIRTHDAY SONG


The famous Happy birthday song was written in 1893 and with evolution of mass media it is used worldwide to celebrate the anniversary of a person's birth. Prior to mass media phenomenon, there was another song used in Slovenia at that occasion: Oj slavljenec današnji. It was written originally as a part of a male vocal octet titled Pozdrav, by Franc Ferjančič, around the turn of the century (1900) and is still known and sung by approx. 20% of Slovenians at family birthday parties. Its melody is a bit more difficult to sing as the traditional Happy birthday song, since it is usually sung in 2 or 3 voices. However, it is now cultivated in private places, among families and is very rarely publicly performed or broadcasted. Stanič's arrangement for mixed choir revives the Slovenian family tradition. [1], [2]


"IZPOD PERESA SLOVENSKIH SKLADATELJEV" RADIO PROGRAMME


The radio programme, which is broadcast on February 2nd, 2018  by the Slovenian national radio channel ARS, presents four late compositions of Ž. Stanič’s. Editor A. Š. Cusma interviews the composer. Link.




2017



ČRNA LUKNJA / BLACK HOLE


for tidldibab, folk instruments, percussion and brass ensemble. Commissioned by the Slovenian Philharmony Brass Ensemble. It was be premiered by the ensemble on December 9th in Ljubljana. The naming of the composition came by itself, considering that the event program was planned to begin with Stanič's music, to be continued with two compositions of Bach and Mozart, and to be ended with Stanič's music. With its immense gravity, Black hole swallows everything in its surroundings, so it "swallows" different musical ideas, including the music of Bach and Mozart, that are played separately, or any other music, that is performed in between. So there is an idea of a Black hole composition in one movement, that has a hole, into which other music "falls", continuing with the "same" movement of Black hole, not the second movement: in 3D, as if it was a Swiss cheese with a hole, slice of which continues from the hole on and doesn't end there. First performance: TASF & Boštjan Gomba - Črna luknja / Black Hole - 24. Jazz Cerkno [digital edition & LP]


ZAKON / THE LAW


for a narrator and percussion becomes its name from the Slovenian Copyright law, from which the narrator's text derives. Official text was slightly changed and put out of context, forming a nonsense lorem ipsum-like "lyrics" and giving the narrator lots of possibilities of articulation. Percussion and vocal in The Law are both acting like instruments. It was first performed in Slovenian Philharmony by percussionist Franci Krevh and actor Jure Ivanušič in October 4th 2017, Ljubljana and October 21st, 2017, in Maribor. Concert summary. [Archive recording session photo]; [broadcast]


ZA NEKAJ BOGASTEV VEMO / A FEW RITCHES IS THAT WE KNOW OF


A poem by Persian poet Hafis, translated into Slovenian language by Alojz Gradnik. Music by Žiga Stanič, for male octet, was made in 1999 for Slovene octet and was performed with the same ensemble at the concert event in Gorizia, Italy, on September 18th, 2017 within Kogojevi dnevi festival.



VIOLIN SONATA


performed by Andrej Kopač and published on a CD titled Reminiscences, by the Society of Slovene Composers, in 2017. [CD], ED. DSS 2017111

ALEA IACTA EST


is a one movement piece for piano, strings and percussion. It was recorded and produced in 2017. As the title suggests, Alea iacta est is an aleatoric piece on some occasions, with a scheme resembling dice surfaces, changing style from classical chill-out to contemporary dissonance and back. iTunes link.


NE OURI, NE SEJAJ / DON'T PLOW, DON'T SOW


A short spark, romantic style adaptation of Slovenian folk tune for flute, piano and horn, composed and first performed as an encore at Kogojevi dnevi music festival in 2009, now recorded and promoted by the TriO ensemble: Nikolina Kovač J., flute, Robert Petrič, french horn, Lovorka Nemeš Dular, piano. It was arranged for a string quartet as well. Published on a CD by TriO ensemble. YouTube link.



RICHARD WAGNER: SEIN LEBEN. SEIN WERK. SEIN JAHRHUNDERT.


Martin Gregor-Dellin's book on Wagner was translated into Slovenian for the first time, and will be published later this year. Translator: Dr Simon Širca; peer review: Peter Bedjanič, Dr Žiga Stanič. A short review and preview.



A TRIP / DER AUSFLUG / IZLET


An orchestral onomatopoetic piece, concerning a trip with a car. The way out of town includes many urban sound effects, played by the orchestra, especially percussion instruments.

First performance: May 5, Ljubljana. Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra, following four performances on November 14 & 15, Gallus Hall, Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana.



PIANO CONCERTO FIRST PERFORMANCE


First performance at Closing of the 32nd Slovenian Music Days Festival at the Slovenian Philharmonic, Ljubljana. March 23, RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra, conductor Simon Krečič, soloist Žiga Stanič. Link.


BABA, CONCERTO FOR TIDLDIBAB AND ORCHESTRA PERFORMANCES IN 2017


in France: Orchestre de Picardie / The Darwinian Orchestra, conductor Arie van Beek, soloist Boštjan Gombač

February 2, Théâtre municipal d'Abbeville (World premiere)

February 3, Cité de la Musique et de la Danse, Soissons.

February 4, Creil, La Faïencerie-Théâtre Allée Nelson.

2016


DARWINIAN EXHIBITION IN CANTEBURY, UK


17 October 2016 to 10 November 2016 hosted in the Herbert Read Gallery, UCA, Canterbury, UK. The exhibition consisted of:

Divje Babe cave: Photograph by student Rosie Panton

Composition for Divje Babe Flute: Žiga Stanič: Crack of time 45139 (from Crack of time series). Performed by Ljuben Dimkaroski (tidldibab) and Žiga Stanič (prepared piano). Recorded in Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2016.

Porcelain replica of Divje Babe Flute made by Ljuben Dimkaroski

Smartland Divertimento- a smartphone installation piece by GRAME

link



I HAVE A DREAM,


for clarinet and accordion was composed in 2016. It is thematically connected with the famous speech by Martin Luther, “I have a dream”, which inspired a crowd of listeners in Washington in 1963. Luther’s speech encompasses several rhetorical elements, which are translated into a musical language and presented by the musicians: metaphors, amplification, parallelism, theses, antitheses, allusions, exclamations, etc. The composition is not a direct copy of the famous speech; after all, it is performed by two people. Within the music, the two musicians become the body and soul of the same speaker; they internalise the monologue into a dialogue between conscious and unconscious.

First performance: Boštjan Gombač and Luka Juhart, October 10, 2016, Ljubljana.



“SLOVENIAN SOLOISTS” RADIO PROGRAMME


The radio programme “Slovenian Soloists”, which is broadcast by the Slovenian national radio channel ARS and edited by Anamarija Štukelj Cusma, presents part of Ž. Stanič’s piano repertoire and interviews the composer. Link.



CRACKS OF TIME


With prime numbers for titles, Cracks of Time is a series of pieces played by Ljuben Dimkaroski and Žiga Stanič on the tidldibab and the piano, respectively. With the world’s oldest instrument and its rich acoustic variety, Cracks of Time demonstrates the wide range of musical aesthetic possibilities that could have been used by primitive man. Performed and recorded in 2016, shortly before Ljuben’s death, the project was well received by archaeologists and musicologists, with some of the great names, such as Dr Marcel Otte, writing introductory essays. Link to Ljuben's memorial site.


ON CREATIVE WORK


An interview in the Slovenian music journal Glasna, in the column V ateljeju skladateljskih poetik (In the Studio of Composers’ Poetics) [Glasna, Year 47, No. 1, February-March 2016, pp. 30-31]



BABA


Music for a Palaeolithic bone flute, possibly the world’s oldest known musical instrument, found at the archaeological site Divje Babe in Slovenia. The score was commissioned by the Orchestra Network for Europe and written for Ljuben Dimkaroski, a performer on the ancient flute dating back ca. 60,000 years, which he subsequently named “tidldibab”. The flute part is accompanied by orchestral strings and percussion. Baba was first recorded in March 2016 and had live performances on concert stages in several European cities between 2017 and 2018.


VARIATIO DELECTAT

Cicero’s rhetorical maxim “variatio delectat” (variety is the spice of life) reminds us that trying different things keeps life interesting, as opposed to the notion of repetition. The CD entitled Variatio delectat, released in 2016 by the Society of Slovene Composers, contains a variety of types of music created by Žiga Stanič. It opens with the Antiopera, which is followed by compositions for 1, 2, 3 and 5 performers. Link.


2015


PIANO CONCERTO


Composed in December 2015, Stanič’s Piano Concerto is designed in one movement. Its internal structure is based on the introductory musical pattern, a sound cluster flashing or amplitude fluctuation of sound information in repetitive silent-loud phases. The piano part is sometimes highly virtuosic and pianistically difficult. In its counterphases it accompanies the orchestra, and in these parts the piece could be understood as a “concerto for orchestra and piano”. The musical potential of the composition is built on various sound-timbre effects produced by a range of extended techniques in the orchestra, and with relatively variegated use of percussion.

The solo part is aleatoric in places with regard to the orchestra, as are some orchestral instruments at certain parts of the concerto. These time-chance-music sections are the opposite extreme to strict isorhythmic sections, which are at one point supported with a hammer and anvil. Together, they again form the phase-counterphase model. In this work, Stanič’s musical language shares many features of his other compositions from the last decade: several onomatopoeias, e.g., animal voices; tinnitus (ringing in the ear) that leads the listener from the loudest part of the concerto to silence; paragram use of the prayer Pater Noster combined with the simulation of a wall clock; imitation of time-inversed listening to music (rotation of an LP record in the opposite direction); pitch bending derived from accelerating the speed of listening to the music, etc.

The piano is mainly treated as a percussion instrument, while the occasional “hyper speed” of piano playing reminds us of the fact that any melodic line, if played fast enough, psychoacoustically becomes a movable sound cluster, as the listener can no longer distinguish individual pitches and only a curtain of sound remains. The harmonic material in some phrases includes clear tonal chords; not in the function of tonality, but rather expressing a fugitive quality. Further acoustic touches are represented by the many orchestral glissandos in the strings, brass and wind.



WRITINGS ON WAGNER / SPISI O WAGNERJU


At the end of 2015, a book on Wagner was published, comprising famous works translated into Slovenian for the first time: G. B. Shaw (The Perfect Wagnerite), T. Mann (Das Leiden und Größe Richard Wagners, Richard Wagner und Der Ring des Nibelungen) and T. W. Adorno (Versuch über Wagner). Translator: Dr Simon Širca; peer review: Peter Bedjanič, Dr Žiga Stanič, Nataša Zager. Preview. ISBN 978-961-6311-91-5



TAKTONS SOUND RECORDINGS COMPETITION


Since 2002, sound recordings by the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra have been submitted four times to the international sound recording competition Taktons in Novi Sad, Serbia. Each time, the recordings have received first prize in large orchestra categories, twice with sound engineer Rado Cedilnik (R. Strauss: Horn Concerto No.1, G. Faure: Pelléas et Mélisande), once with sound engineer Januš Luznar (A. Bruckner: Symphony No. 7), and in year 2015 with sound engineer Aleks Pirkmajer Penko (G. Holst: Planets). The results reflect the superb quality of RTV Slovenia’s orchestral music production. Link.


SCRIABIN’S KEYBOARD WITH LIGHTS


A lecture on synesthesia, musical cryptography and the subjectivity of color pattern translation - questions and problems arising from A. Scriabin’s final orchestral work Prometheus. For the European Piano Teachers Association (EPTA), Ljubljana, November 2015. Published in the Virkla magazine, pp. 2-5, November 2016.

TOCCATA                    


A piano piece focused on extremely rapid playing, consisting of mobile tone clusters combining diatonic and pentatonic material. Theoretically, any melodic material can become a mobile sound cluster if it is played fast enough. Toccata was composed for Ana Šinkovec, who premiered it in November 2015 on the Millenium Stage at the Kennedy Center, D.C.



TANDEM


A short virtuoso piece for two trombones, composed in 2015. Microtonal tremolo while playing glissando is a recurrent musical element, accompanied by short tones or trills on the other trombone. The score offers a short optional choreography for the players, as well as a more-or-less audible citation of the Slovenian folk song Zeleni Jure. The musicians have many opportunities to show their technical skills in the prestissimo, which includes the rapid playing of harmonics or playing successive scale pitches. The shorter, quieter part of the piece comprises some acoustic instrument modifications and less common, unconventional performance techniques. Tandem was premiered at at World Music Days 2015 in Ljubljana.



SILENCE OF THE SYRENS


A performance of an early work for solo piano and narrator, Silence of the Syrens, was given in Ljubljana by pianist Jure Rozman in June 2015. The virtuoso pianistic piece is designed upon the text by Franz Kafka Das Schweigen der Sirenen, which is narrated in the final part of the composition by the pianist.

"Nun haben aber die Sirenen eine noch schrecklichere Waffe als den Gesang, nämlich ihr Schweigen. Es ist zwar nicht geschehen, aber vielleicht denkbar, daß sich jemand vor ihrem Gesang gerettet hätte, vor ihrem Schweigen gewiß nicht."



VIOLIN SONATA


This three-movement sonata for solo violin is intended as a virtuoso display piece. The exposition in the first movement begins with a calm tonal theme A. The presto B theme does not follow at the end of A as in a classical sonata, but is instead gradually faded in. In general, the sonata form is not sketched as groups of melodic material, but rather by articulation and other ways of performance. The second movement is slow with lengthy pedal tones, while the final movement enables the performer to show off his/her technical skills.




2014



HIGH SCHOOL E-WORKBOOK


In 2014, the Slovenian Ministry of Education undertook the first Slovenian electronic workbook project. In the field of music education for high schools, the educational materials were prepared by Dr L. Mihelač, Dr M. Mihevc and Dr Ž. Stanič. ISBN 978-961-03-0278-0 (html)



HORN SONATA


This piece for solo horn has four movements. The title derives from the context sonata-cantata, meaning “suonare” in contrast to “cantare”, rather than from classical sonata form. The individual movements are, however, organized and interconnected as performing categories with a common development, which ends with a Striptease (the subtitle of the last movement). The theatrical effect is attained quite naturally – while playing a Slovenian folk song about a girl and a boy – solely with the mouthpiece, and then with a kissing effect, hand slapping and finally by removing the valves and the bell. Horn Sonata is a technically difficult piece that should be played by a horn player with experience in performing contemporary music. It was first performed by Mihajlo Bulajič in 2014.


AUTUMN FAIRYTALES FOR ZITHER


Autumn Fairy Tales for zither consists of nine short pieces devoted to young zither players. The zither, most commonly found in the alpine regions of Europe, was once one of the most popular instruments in Slovenia, which is why the majority of Slovenian compositions for zither consist of folk-like tunes. The present collection of nine “fairy tales” was composed as a response to a call for newly composed zither scores. It fills the void in the field of didactic, technically less demanding music for this instrument, and was created on the initiative of Irena Zdolšek, a Slovenian zither player. The collection of nine fairy tales for zither represents a revised and expanded version of a homonymous work composed for the same musician a decade ago (2004).

The individual pieces summarize characteristic melodic patterns of the different nations they are named after (German, Japanese, Finnish, Jewish, American, Siberian, Slovenian, Native American, Ancient Greek fairy tales).

Preview: iTunes


STRING QUARTET NO. 3


The main motif of this single-movement work embraces a major triad, a chord that represents the historical nature of tonality. This chord emerges and fades away in several auditory conceptions. In contemporary classical music, the significance of tonality was gradually blurred and dissolved. For the sake of new compositional approaches, the major/minor triad had to withdraw from musical works. From the viewpoint of the chord itself, if personalized, we could say that it grew old and became weary, puffing and panting like an old skin; it became as annoying as a fly or mosquito being chased in the quiet of the night by a composer as it buzzes and prevents him/her from sleeping. This contemporary composer wants his/her peace and is repulsed by the idea of tonal music, represented by the triad. The auditory image of the quartet summons a series of onomatopoetic patterns. For instance, a fly or a mosquito struck with a slap shakes for a short while with its wings. The quartet’s dramaturgy is defined by several sound effects; for instance, the contemporaneity and mechanicalness of our everyday life is represented by the auditory metaphor of street traffic, in contrast with bird sounds representing nature, etc. Within the piece, the idea of a tonal chord dissolving like an aspirin in a glass of water repeats a few times. The chord nostalgically returns with its hidden faces, alluding to the idea that it still has a beating heart, awaiting better times to come.




2013



OPER UND DRAMA


Richard Wagner’s (1813-1883) famous book Opera and Drama was first translated into Slovenian on the 200th anniversary of author’s birth. Translator: Dr Simon Širca; Peer Reviewers: Mr Uroš Lajovic and Dr Ž. Stanič. ISBN 978-961-6311-80-9



WIND QUINTET NO. 3


This single-movement composition, premiered by the Slowind quintet, is thematically divided into smaller units, of which the first section is most clearly delineated. In it, movable tone clusters are woven by the woodwinds. This auditory yarn accompanies the horn “aria”, which brutally cuts off and ends the section with three consecutive loud “vuvuzela-like“ blows. The second part of the composition starts with a virtual polyphony, which also constitutes moving tone clusters. The individual voices are agitated with the use of trills and fast passages, which act as accompanying auditory scenery. The third part of the quintet is a calm serenade reminiscent of animal voices. The musical ideas of the final part continue with ostinato Morse code themes, a horn cadenza and the imitating resonance of the woodwinds.



ONE THOUSAND AND ONE NOTES, A MUSICAL FAIRY TALE FOR CHILDREN


One Thousand and One Notes is a composition for piano solo, conceived as a musical fairy tale for children. Its name, as well as its concept in general, resembles the famous compilation One Thousand and One Nights, which frames Scheherazade’s skillful storytelling, enabling her to avoid execution by the sultan. Destined to die after she finishes her story, Scheherazade attaches one story to another, postponing the death sentence each day and prolonging her life, until she finally saves herself. In a similar manner, this musical fairy tale encompasses a succession of short stories (full of notes: thus, one thousand and one notes). Intended to amuse children (or adults), the themes are generally linked with an imaginary world connected to music, its performance and its terminology.

The young listener is guided in the association of several musical allegories; for instance, How the Notes Became Stars and Shone up in the Heavens, Count Marcato and His Maid Staccato, Of a Man that Counted Bars, The Story of a Chord and his Family, Mrs Sarabanda’s New Jewellery, Grievous Tuplet, etc. Given that One Thousand and One Notes is performed without breaks, in one breath, it could be just as well described as a suite. It is mainly composed in the same tonality, a simple C major. With the exception of some pentatonic themes, which strictly use the black keys of the piano, it mostly avoids modulations to tonalities using sharps or flats. With such a simple concept, this piece intends to be didactical, approaching children’s analytical sense of hearing. At the same time, it is a reminder of the last words of a famous 20th century atonal composer: “If I lived longer, how many more compositions I could make in an ordinary C major”.

Excerpt: YouTube


MARIJAN GABRIJELČIČ (1940-1998) MANUSCRIPT ARCHIVE


Fifteen years after the composer’s death, his family decided to leave all of his materials to the National and University Library (NUK), Ljubljana. All of the extant documents, books and scores were reviewed and classified by his student Dr Žiga Stanič and given to NUK’s Music Department. Details.



THE BALD SOPRANO, ANTIOPERA

Žiga Stanič’s antiopera entitled The Bald Soprano was created in 2012 based on the eponymous antidrama of Eugene Ionesco. It is devised as a vocal-instrumental scene, similar to an opera, but introducing a reversal of the classical roles between the instrumentalists and singers. The protagonists on stage are the wind instruments and the trumpeters, while the singers act in accompanying roles and “substitute” for the orchestra, which acts as the antagonist of classical works of opera.

The antiopera consists of eleven scenes. Along with their musical performance, the instrumental soloists also perform as actors. During the opera, they move about the stage in a manner similar to that of singers in a classical opera. The mixed choir sits inconspicuously in a semicircle at the edge of the stage, encircling the soloist. The story speaks of two average small-town families that symbolise impersonality, the continuously repeated habits and thought patterns of lost individuals, and the empty life patterns of modern society. Problems associated with modern musical aesthetics are also incorporated, thus introducing a parody on all cliché and commercial music. It also addresses the tragedy associated with the invention of music, which, on the basis of rational construction, continuously searches for paths towards a cultural market, no matter the cost. The music consists of numerous melodies and harmonies that incorporate cliché elements, using minimalistic, mechanical and predictable musical material. The melodic patterns of the soloists are repeated, therefore hinting at the replaceable nature of generically composed material, which represents the language and personality of the unoriginal (anti)drama protagonists. Comedy and tragedy  decant from a consonant ternary system into atonal dissonant spheres and back. The accompanying choir only vocalizes the music and does not use any literary texts. The scene remains the same throughout the performance. There is a small table on stage surrounded by four chairs positioned in a semicircle. In the background is a clock, whose chiming is occasionally imitated by two choir singers. The choir sits at the edge of the stage. The instrumental soloists, the wind instruments and the trumpeters, are free to move about and perform in a free-style manner, while “breathing” through their instruments. Departing from its accompanying role, the choir also takes the leading role and exchanges its task with the soloists.

Trailer: YouTube



ROMANCE FOR HORN AND PIANO/ORCHESTRA


The only surviving instrumental chamber music composed by Alexander Scriabin, Romance for Horn and Piano, was performed and recorded for the first time in Slovenia in 2013. Horn: Boštjan Lipovšek, piano: Žiga Stanič. Stanič orchestrated the piece especially for this occasion. The version for horn and orchestra was recorded by the RTV Symphony Orchestra conducted by Simon Krečič. Soloist: Boštjan Lipovšek.



THE END


The End, subtitled a “parody at the end of times”, is a classical orchestral piece. The listener is continuously directed to the idea of the imminent end of music, as it is composed of perpetual stereotypical harmonic cadences, which usually end traditional western classical compositions. While listening to individual plagal, authentic and other chord sequences, the average listener thinks of an early end, as s/he has heard in endless musical examples throughout his/her life. The End manipulates the listener’s habit of anticipating the end. The resolution to the tonic (which could actually be the end) is always followed by another sequence that sounds upon its end. The series of cliché musical conclusions, springing one from another, end with a final pompous section. Yet the last final part deceives the listener’s judgement and does not end with the tonic. It stops at the dominant and calls for some instrument to end it with a note belonging to the tonic chord. In the course of the music, the final resolution, which could be understood as redemption or deliverance, does not exist. With this in mind, The End is a parable of the endless process cycle of nature, man’s intentions, guesswork and expectations. In the history of mankind, there have been many expectations of the “end of the world” or the “end of time”, which have been real to specific groups of people at a specific moment (e.g., at the turn of the century or millennium) and explained one way or another. From today’s point of view, all of these “deadlines” and expectations remain unrealized. Objectively, there is always space and time, even when an individual dies, or if all living things on our planet die, or even if our planet itself is destroyed. If we step out of our subjective perspective, the end is out of sight.




2012



RUBAIYAT


The a capella cycle of seven songs Rubaiyat – based on texts by Persian astronomer-poet Omar Khayyam translated into English by Edward Fitzgerald and subsequently into Slovenian by Alojz Gradnik – was partly lost and reconstructed after a decade. Stanič uses his own order of verse selection. The seven Rubaiyat had their second “premiere” performance in 2012 at a concert in the Slovenian Philharmonic Hall by the Slovenian Chamber Choir with guest conductor Urša Lah.


Drink Wine ! Wine ! Wine! Red Wine !

That yellow Cheek of her's to incarnadine.

You know how little while we have to stay,

And, once departed, may return no more.


Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness -

And Wilderness is Paradise enow.


One Moment in Annihilation's Waste,

One Moment, of the Well of Life to taste -

And look - a thousand Blossoms with the Day

Woke - and a thousand scatter'd into Clay

... one thing is certain, that Life flies;

One thing is certain, and the Rest is Lies;

The Flower that once has blown for ever dies.


And if the Wine you drink, the Lip you press,

End in the Nothing all Things end in -

Yes - Then fancy while Thou art,

Thou art but what Thou shalt be -

Nothing - Thou shalt not be less.


The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,

Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit

Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,

Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.

With Earth's first Clay They did the Last Man's knead,

And then of the Last Harvest sow'd the Seed:

Yea, the first Morning of Creation wrote

What the Last Dawn of Reckoning shall read.


Ah, my Beloved, fill the Cup that clears

To-day of past Regrets and future Fears -

To-morrow ? - Why, To-morrow I may be

Myself with Yesterday's Sev'n Thousand Years.


I came like Water, and like Wind I go.



RHAPSODY ON A THEME OF PAGANINI


In 2012, TV Slovenia recorded orchestral music including the 18th variation from Rachmaninov’s famous work. Performed by Žiga Stanič, piano, En Shao, conductor, and the RTV Symphony Orchestra. It was first broadcast in December 2012.



INTO THE ZOO


The incidental orchestral piece V živalski vrt (Into the Zoo) was created with the Ljubljana Zoo in mind. The treasure trove of classical music contains many compositions that describe the animal world, mainly on the basis of fantasy and metaphorical associations between the melody and the character of animals. The symphony orchestra setting offers numerous sonic opportunities for the onomatopoetic imitation of the actual sounds of animals. Created with this in mind, the present composition can be listened to and comprehended either as programme music or as pure music without an intrusive story, as the music itself offers many possibilities of explanation. If we want to connect the piece with its title, we can understand it in the following way. The strings represent the zoo’s visitors, strolling around with decadently pleasant feelings, watching caged animals. The woodwinds, brass and percussion imitate the diverse animals put on display along the trail. The strings also imitate certain animals, including donkeys (celli), insects (violins), and so on. The promenade idyll is interrupted by the cruel reality of the enslaved animals, and finally a caged human appears (marimba). The animals free themselves at last.  



VOCALISE


Vocalise (for mezzo-soprano, clarinet, cello and piano; 2012) is a composition centered around a vocal part without a text. The singer’s task is pretentious, as the melodic material is performed with a glissando technique in such a way that the pitch movement never stops. At the same time, the singer must master all of the pitch intonations touched by the tangent.

Always in (microtonal) motion, the vocal line is accompanied by instruments that avoid fixed pitch material, creating a mirage-like atmosphere by playing glissandi (in connection with the voice) or tremoli, resembling an impressionistic haze. The acoustic characteristics of the piece require a stage with a longer reverberation time (a church, a chapel), as the pace is not fast, allowing numerous opportunities for the accentuation and evolution of harmonics or timbre. With its glissando melodies, the piece is reminiscent of choral singing; it is full of movement, yet acts statically, and vice versa.




EARLIER



A SONG WITHOUT WORDS


Premiered in Trieste in 2010, this is an incidental piece composed for the 86th birthday of Slovenian poet and intellectual Ciril Zlobec. Played on the cello and the piano, it avoids using the poet’s text literally, as it has no vocal part. The sound of the cello is somehow warm and very close to the human voice, and is therefore the most suitable musical means to express the work of a poet. Poetry that passes over matter and is changed into metatext. Music allows us to do so. Such a concept is perhaps the most sincere offering of that which we can read between the poem’s lines. Thus the title: A Song without Words.



SLOVENIAN CHANSON FESTIVAL


Until 2010, Dr Žiga Stanič was part of the team of organisers and a member of the Slovenian chanson festival jury for several years. The festival was intended to encourage less established composers, poets and performers, giving them a chance to be creative and have their work presented and promoted by Radio Slovenia through the guidelines of a contest-like event, which was held annually or biennially. Based on the French term “nouvelle chanson”, the meaning of “chanson” in Slovenian approaches the notion of a pop song, but is distinguished from the latter by the ingeniousness of the text and the acoustic band chamber setting. Closing speeches (Slovene language).



CHOPIN'S 200th CENTENARY COMPETITION "WE LIKE CHOPIN"


In cooperation with the Ljubljana Academy of Music, general sponsor the KD Group, and the Embassy of the Republic of Poland and its representative the Polish Ambassador to Slovenia Mr Piotr Kaszuba, RTV Slovenia organised a competition for young Slovenian pianists in 2010. The obligatory repertoire was Chopin’s music. The winner of the competition, Miha Haas, performed Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra. International jury: Elzbieta Karas Krasztel, Tomaž Petrač, Dr Žiga Stanič.



SONATA FOR VIOLA & STRINGS


Creating an arrangement of the Sonata for Solo Viola composed by Lucijan Marija Škerjanc, one of the most clear-headed 20th century Slovenian musicians, was a great honour, as well as a great responsibility. The arrangement was premiered in 2008 by the Camerata Labacensis Orchestra and violist Franc Avsenek. The first two movements (Allemande and Fugue) of this four-movement piece are written in a neo-Baroque style, while the last two (Elegy and Toccata) were composed in a somewhat free manner. The manuscript of the solo piece originated in the years 1935–36, but it was arranged 70 years later. In the first, second and last movements, the strings are accompanied by harpsichord, while the solo viola takes the role of the protagonist only in the first movement. The third movement, Elegy, is written in a neo-Romantic way, resembling film music. It could be compared to the famous Religioso (sometimes called Adagio) for strings composed by another important Slovenian composer, Slavko Osterc, which is used as signature music by Slovenian national radio. This work is also a third movement and represents a stylistic exception in a lengthy musical piece.



FUTILE GIFT, RANDOM GIFT

FRUITLESS AND CHANCE GIFT, MY BREATH


This trio for mezzo-soprano, horn and piano is composed to the homonymous poem by Alexander Pushkin and debates the beginning and end of life. It was one of favourite poems of Slovenian poet Dane Zajc, who passed away shortly before the premiere and to whom the piece is dedicated.


Fruitless and chance gift, my breath,

Why were you given to me,

And why were you condemned to death

By inscrutable destiny?

Who fashioned brain and eye and limb

From nothingness, and gave

My spirit an immortal dream

And knowledge of the grave?

I weep because the only sound

Is life's monotonous,

Sad, aimless, endless lull, the ground-

Swell of the universe.

Preview: iTunes


POMLADNA SUITA / SPRING SUITE


A project, first performed by world renowned violinist Stefan Milenkovich and pianist-composer Žiga Stanič. The suite consists of 12 movements: Crossing, Air, Tango, Red, White & Black, Time Travel, Lost Louse, Bark Beetle, Wheat Field, Awakening, The Sun, Back Into The Circle. It begins and ends in an "easy-listening" manner, but most of the time it takes a deep step into the exploration of violin and piano extended techniques and sounds, including prepared piano sounds. Link.




BOJ NA POŽIRALNIKU / THE ESOPHAGUS BATTLE


This vocal piece is focused on the drinking manners of Slovenian people or people around the world in general. The three vocal soloists, using different extended vocal techniques, such as burping, are accompanied by a mixed choir, singing Slovenian drinking folk songs excerpts as a background. This song is very direct to the listener, according to its naturalism perhaps rude to some, but the main idea embraces its antidramatic content. Throughout jolly folk melodies, one can hear the sounds of people suffering from drunkenness, heavy breathing, burping, blather, alltogether with one metaphor: fighting at the esophagus. [The same name in direct translation from Slovenian language, with not just quite similar meaning, stands for a famous Slovenian novel by Prežihov Voranc - Boj na požiralniku]. Party atmosphere of this music can be very funny, but on the other hand, it can express a real drama and sadness, connected to the disease of alcoholism, so we can understand it from both positions.




NOCTURNO, FOR HORN AND PIANO


music, audibly cut into short pieces, placed on a quantization net. Both the horn and the piano play the same note values [eighth notes] at all times, with a slight accelerando throughout the whole piece. In this manner, one can hear melodic material, cut into pieces, similar way as one could see an image through a garden fence. It was first performed and recorded by Boštjan Lipovšek and the author in March 2018.

BABA, CONCERTO FOR TIDLDIBAB AND ORCHESTRA PERFORMANCES IN 2018


by soloist Boštjan Gombač and different orchestras:

Performance by Jenaer Philharmonie, Jena, Februar 22, 2018

Two performances by Slovak Sinfonietta, March 8, 2018 Žilina,

Performance by Filharmonie Bohuslava Martinů, Kongresové centrum Zlín, March 15, 2018

Performance Filharmonia Śląska im. Henryka Mikołaja Góreckiego.

Performance in Udine, Italy, May 31st, 2018.

First live performance in Slovenia [10th performance alltogether], June 7th, 2018.

Performance in Sofia, Bulgaria, November 19, 2018.

& archive recording for TV Slovenia, October 2018.



A TRIP TO THE ZOO


for symphony orchestra, was performed within the final concert event of the 3rd Keuris Composers Contest 2018 on May 12th in Flint hall, Amersfoort, The Netherlands, where it received 3rd prize. [Keuris Homepage]



18 +


a composition for prepared piano, presented by the author on April 14th, 2018 at the The Night of Slovene Composers concert event. Played by sex toys, ten vibrators that have the strength to move themselves alone along the strings, producing unique trembling polyphony. Vibrators are manipulated by hand and by percussion mallets, moved into different sectors on piano strings. The instrument is protected with different bands, that prevent the objects to fall to the sound board or into the keyboard mechanism. A few times, there is a pitch "g" played on the keyboard, representing so called g-spot while the progression comes with accelerando in sustain pedal usage. As a climax, table-tennis balls jump out of the piano. Another commentary (in Slovenian language). [YouTube]



ROMANCE, FOR VIOLIN, CLARINET AND PIANO


commissioned to compose as a romantic biss-piece 19 years ago, was recorded in March 2018 by Jože Kotar (clarinet), Črtomir Šiškovič (violin) and Luca Ferrini (piano).

BABA, TV PERFORMANCE BROADCAST


Baba, for tidldibab & orchestra, was consequently recorded by RTV S, and was premiered on March 4, 2019 on TVS1 programme. Link.



“SLOVENIAN SOLOISTS” RADIO PROGRAMME


6 pieces, performed by Žiga Stanič were presented in a radio interview on tuestday, February 26, radio Program Ars (SLO): J. S. Bach's Fantasia & Fugue BWV 904, Maria Th. von Paradis: Sicilienne (horn and piano), and Stanič's: Crack of Time 1949, Alea iacta est, The Esophagus Battle and 18+. Link.



SLOVENE ALPHABET


Choral piece, sung only by using a, b, c, č, ... voices and many extended vocal techniques, as an alphabet sequence. Composed in 1995, but first performed and recorded in 2019. Duration: 14 minutes. [iTunes]



ORIGAMI


Music for acoustic guitar, violin and double bass, resembling the paper-folding process of origami making, consisting many extended techniques and divided into phases by guitar string tunnings. Origami will be first performed on May 15, 2019 in Ljubljana.



2018



CRACKS OF TIME BROADCAST


Music for tidldibab and piano, played by Ljuben Dimkaroski and Žiga Stanič, in memoriam to L. Dimkaroski within Radio programme Arsov Art Atelje by Primož Trdan, RA Slovenia. Link.



"IZPOD PERESA SLOVENSKIH SKLADATELJEV" RADIO PROGRAMME


Radio Slovenia, on May 18th, a commentary to pieces A Trip to the Zoo and Spring Suite. Link.



PIANO CONCERTO


was presented at the 65th session of the International Rostrum of Composers in Budapest, May 14 – 19.