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50 For The Future 50 For The Future

KRONOS presents a free library of fifty contemporary works designed to guide string quartets in developing and honing the skills required for the performance of 21st-century repertoire.

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Enthusiasm Strategies

Missy Mazzoli

USA

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I think of music itself, particularly the music made by the Kronos Quartet, as a strategy for mustering enthusiasm and joy. It’s a way of setting the world in order, a method of carving up time in way that, seemingly by magic, changes our frame of mind, energizes us, and gives us courage and reassurance. In this piece, I tried to combine techniques that were both scary and familiar to me; a cascade of natural harmonics collapses into an ecstatic chorale, which then evaporates into silence.

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Sunjata's Time

Fodé Lassana Diabaté

Mali

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Sunjata’s Time is dedicated to Sunjata Keita, the warrior prince who founded the great Mali Empire in 1235, who established many of the cultural norms that remain in practice today—including the close relationship between patron and musician. Each of the first four movements depicts a character who played a central role in Sunjata’s life, and each is fronted by one of the four instruments of the quartet. The fifth movement brings the quartet together in equality to portray the harmonious and peaceful reign of this great West African emperor who lived nearly eight centuries ago.

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Remote Control

Guillermo Galindo

Mexico / USA

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Digital technologies have changed the way we interact with and perceive our environment, how we conceive of time and space, and how we relate to people and nature. Remote Control is a sonic representation of an alternative reality. Just like a video game, the piece is a virtual rendition of a video war game. By using loud sounds and intense music to create fear, music becomes the ominous whisper of death. Alternative instrumental techniques imitate random events on the battle ground, and audience members stream stroboscopic videos from their phones, turning them into active participants.

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Hank Dutt - General
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With each new piece, our tradition is to work with the composer to understand the work better and to get insight into how he or she has written the piece, and how to execute the ideas and characterizations behind it. Now, through 50 for the Future, we get to pass on that knowledge from the composer to the young groups that we coach. It's very exciting to see all this music come alive in the hands of young groups around the world."

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Hank Dutt

Violist, Kronos Quartet

Featured Technique

Nicole Lizée's Another Living Soul

Learn how to use the whistling tubes, groan tubes, and desk bells for Nicole Lizée's piece, Another Living Soul.

David Harrington - What Would Happen?
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What would happen if we could, through our years of working with hundreds of composers from many places, make a body of incredibly interesting, fun music that could serve the next generation as a launching pad to a world of discovery?”

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David Harrington

Artistic Director, Kronos Quartet