Hacia los vientos norteños for Symphony Orchestra

“… Version 16 of the contemporary music meeting had at its close the U. La Serena Symphony Orchestra, as usual, in two functions performed in the heart of Coquimbo (Cultural Center Palace), and in the Ignacio Domeyko Auditorium of the homonymous campus of the ULS. This final program, directed by the American David Handel, head of the Orlando Symphony Orchestra in the US, presented three highly contrasting works, accounting for three different approaches that appear in the wide diversity of today’s music. And that is also an objective of specialized festivals, to show the range of trends on offer today. First, the purely modernist language of Andrián Pertout, a Chilean resident in Australia, and a compatriot whose work has been widely disseminated abroad. It was a premiere entitled ‘Towards the Northern Winds,’ whose enveloping sound waves were allowed to drop over the audience, through infinite orchestral colors and iridescent strings, whose glow is the sustentation of games of contrast. The material melts into a spiral of sound, which poetically connects with its wind title. Special mention deserves the fact that the piece is dedicated to Jorge Peña Hen, the leading figure of the Serenense musical culture…”

“… La versión 16 del encuentro de música contemporánea contó en su cierre con la Orquesta Sinfónica U. La Serena, como ya es habitual, en dos funciones realizadas en el corazón de Coquimbo (Centro Cultural Palace), y en el Auditorio Ignacio Domeyko del campus homónimo de la ULS. Este programa final, dirigido acuciosamente por el estadounidense David Handel, titular de la Orlando Symphony Orchestra en EE.UU., presentó tres obras altamente contrastantes, dando cuentas de tres enfoques distintos que asoman en la amplia diversidad de la música actual. Y ese es también un objetivo de los festivales especializados, el de mostrar el abanico de tendencias que ofrece el presente. Primero, el lenguaje netamente modernista de Andrián Pertout, chileno residente en Australia, y un compatriota cuyo trabajo ha tenido amplia difusión en el extranjero. Se trató de un estreno titulado ‘Hacia los Vientos Norteños,’ cuyas envolventes ondas sonoras se dejaron caer sobre el público, a través de infinitos colores orquestales e iridiscentes cuerdas, cuyo fulgor son el sustento de juegos de contrastes. El material se funde en una espiral sonora, que de manera poética conecta con su eólico título. Mención especial merece el hecho de que la pieza está dedicada a Jorge Peña Hen, figura señera del cultivo musical serenense…”

Álvaro Gallegos. “Closing of the Musicahora Festival 2019: elegies, myths and rock and roll.” Society. Radio ADN 91.7. 9 Sep. 2019. <https://www.adnradio.cl/noticias/sociedad/cierre-del-festival-musicahora-2019-elegias-mitos-y-rock-and-roll/20190909/nota/3951272.aspx>.

Luz meridional, Twenty-four Études for Pianoforte

Rarely do I hear a new work that is so strong and meaningful and as full of so many delights as Andrián Pertout’s monumental piano work Luz Meridional. This is singularly one of the most important piano compositions ever written by an Australian composer. For me it ranks with the best works of Larry Sitsky and Richard Meale for intellectual approach and musical insight and sheer joy. Listening to a recent work with a subtitle of 24 Etudes naturally the mind goes to the Ligeti Etudes and even to the amazing piano works of Olivier Messiaen. Pertout’s antipodean collection holds it head high in this company.”

Alan Holley, ClassikON, 27 March, 2019.


Aire para Soro for Symphony Orchestra

“It was about a homage to the national composer Enrique Soro, but it was that and much more, because the concert offered by the National Symphony Orchestra of Chile with the Symphonic Choir and the pianist María Paz Santibáñez, on September 14 and 15, allowed us to appreciate three works that gave full account of the quality of Chilean music learned in different periods.”

“Already the opening was totally auspicious, ‘Air for Soro, for Symphony Orchestra, no. 447’ (world premiere), short but vigorous and overwhelming piece.  A revisited and deconstructed cueca, by the Chilean composer Andrián Pertout (1963), a very energetic work with great orchestration, where, above all, the percussion and the strings were highlighted with much clarity.  Of marked contemporary accent that nonetheless filters the sound of our traditional dance of very clear and unequivocal form.  A piece of rich texture that makes us revalue the symphonic possibilities of the cueca, flying here towards classic horizons.  In a certain way, it led me to evoke, for example, what the maestro Astor Piazzolla did with tango, in the sense of opening, expanding and projecting all the possibilities of a popular musical rhythm towards the learned…”

“…University of Chile Theater.  September 14 and 15.”

“Se trataba de un homenaje al compositor nacional Enrique Soro, pero fue eso y mucho más, porque el concierto que ofreció la Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Chile junto al Coro Sinfónico y la pianista María Paz Santibáñez, el 14 y 15 de septiembre, nos permitió apreciar tres obras que dieron total cuenta de la calidad de la música docta chilena en diversos periodos.”

“Ya la partida fue totalmente auspiciosa, ‘Aire para Soro, para Orquesta Sinfónica, Nro 447’ (estreno mundial), pieza breve pero vigorosa y contundente.  Una cueca revisitada y deconstruida, del compositor chileno Andrián Pertout (1963), obra muy energética y de gran orquestación, en donde sobretodo se lucieron la percusión y las cuerdas con mucha claridad.  De marcado acento contemporáneo que no obstante filtra el sonido de nuestro baile tradicional de muy clara e inequívoca forma.  Una pieza de rica textura que nos hace revalorar las posibilidades sinfónicas de la cueca, volando aquí hacia horizontes clásicos.  En cierta forma me llevó a evocar, por ejemplo, lo que hizo el maestro Astor Piazzolla con el tango, en el sentido de abrir, expandir y proyectar todas las posibilidades de un ritmo musical popular hacia lo docto…”

“…Teatro Universidad de Chile.  14 y 15 de septiembre.”

José Luis Arredondo.  “La música chilena vivió a lo grande sus Fiestas Patrias con la Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional.”  Toda la Cultura: El blog de Tuiteros Cultura: Tuiteroscultura.  14 Sep. 2018.  <https://tuiteroscultura.com/2018/09/17/la-musica-chilena-vivio-a-lo-grande-sus-fiestas-patrias-con-la-orquesta-sinfonica-nacional/>.

Exposicionesfor Glockenspiel and Tape

The concert opened with Andrián Pertout’s ‘Exposiciones’, which pairs a recording of what sounds like a very old clock with Devenish live on glockenspiel. The clockwork thunks in the recording are irregular, gently building before snapping over. This counterpoints beautifully the scintillating materials provided by Devenish on glockenspiel. Pertout’s program notes make his rhythmic and temporal structure sound devilishly complex, but perhaps because I am a lover of funk, and, as he says, the thunks of the clock serve to mark “the downbeat” as in funk, it actually sounded like a relatively straightforward interdigitating of off-beats and asymmetric accents. In terms of sound quality, if not rhythmic patterning, it felt to me like a hyper-complexified version of Aphex Twin’s ‘Nannou’ or perhaps even ‘On’.”

Jonathan W. Marshall, Seesaw, Friday, 18 May, 2018

Exposicionesfor Glockenspiel and Tape

Devenish took centre stage for an uninterrupted 60 minutes, delivering complicated experimental music with poised artistry. She made the intricate polyrhythmic ratios underpinning Andrián Pertout’s Exposiciones appear naively simple, her fluid phrasing on the glockenspiel creating sweetly melodic phrases even while coordinating the complicated patterns with the electronic punctuations.

Rosalind Appleby, Limelight
, Wednesday, 16 May, 2018

Sonus dulcis for Violin and Pianoforte

Sonus Dulcis by Andrian Pertout has a Japanese modal foundation, yet it’s not as simply utilised as it would have been in less interesting hands.  On occasions, Rothschild makes sounds that could suggest a bowed lute but, apart from some pizzicato, a dash of col legno and a hefty sprinkling of piano movement in fifths, the Orient is hinted at more than imitated.  At about the 3:30 point, the unlikely spirit of Spain and de Falla emerges, interrupted by a violin cadenza loaded with Japanese folk colour, before the Hispanic/Nipponese combination returns in a sort of 6/8 gigue finale…”

Clive O'Connell, Clive O'Connell the Music, The Sky is Melting: Marianne Rothschild and Glenn Riddle, 13 July, 2016

Exposicionesfor Glockenspiel and Tape

Andrián Pertout’s Exposiciones for glockenspiel and tape delves into possible divisions of the octave and an array of polyrhythms. What is satisfying is that one need not necessarily understand anything about the work’s highly complexist structure to find it enjoyable. As the divisions of the octave grow smaller, we encounter harmonies that feel familiar—a few pentatonics, hints of the blues—as well as chords that feel wholly unfamiliar. The piece feels almost improvisatory, casually wandering through harmonic structures and subdivisions of pulse. The fact that Devenish could pull this off while actually navigating an incredibly virtuosic mix of layered polyrhythms is further testament to her skill as a percussionist.

Alex Turley, RealTime, Issue #129,
ct-Nov 2015 pg. 40

for Glockenspiel and Tape

Exposiciones by Andrián Pertout sits in stark contrast: from curious experiments over phasing uncertainties, we now move onto adrenalised tintinabulations dancing frosty over a clockwork counterpoint. There’s a complex process underpinning this work’s unfolding: methodical divisions of octaves laid out across ratio-based polyrhythms. The Indonesian 'Pélog' and 'Sléndro' scales are being invoked too. It’s certainly not stuff my brain can digest as I listen, but the conceptual underpinnings add intrigue to the surface aesthetic, which – for what it’s worth – wouldn’t be out of place in a (good) Dario Argento soundtrack. And for all its scientific machinations, the piece never sounds clinical: it’s virtuosic, bright, great fun.

Lyndon Blue, Cool Perth Nights, Thursday, 17 September, 2015

Riesenschritte for Alto Saxophone, Pianoforte, Contrabass, Jazz Drum Set and Tape

The vibrancy of the pointillist painterly-dab sounds found a sympathetic interconnection in the exciting jazz-infused warmth of Chilean-Australian composer Andrián Pertout. Like the intersecting materials of the Tokugawa Shoguns Imperial Palace in Tokyo, the festival moved from intimate wooden resonances to electronic and jazz-infused world of Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse-home to Motion Blue Yokohama jazz. In this 'peculiar room' within the 'Electro-acoustic Concert' Pertout's virtuosic grooving piano writing in Riesenschritte, with its repetitive single-note forward drive energised by sudden licks into the momentum, was brilliantly handled by pianist Ohno Mayuko. The smooth but richly toned saxophone lines from Tamura Masahiro balanced the grooving piano riffs; both were enclosed in a type of mathematical structural precision that drove the piece to its conclusion. The tired lingering audience was revived in their journey by these breaths of creativity sweeping the Red Brick theatrical cavern.

Bruce Crossman, Resonate Magazine, Wednesday, 19 November, 2014

Navigating the Labyrinth
for String Orchestra

Performance by the Orquesta de Cámara de Chile conducted by Rodolfo Fischer
Friday, 3 December, 2010, Teatro Municipal de Ñuñoa, Ñuñoa, Santiago, Chile

La segunda parte abrió con una obra para cuerdas solas “Navegando el Laberinto”, del compositor chileno Andrián Pertout, nacido en 1963 y que ha pasado la mayor parte de su vida en Italia y Australia, donde ahora reside. Sus antecedentes indican que es un músico vanguardista electroacústico que participa en variados festivales de música contemporánea, por lo que sorprendió escuchar esta obra para cuerdas,de ocho minutos , tradicional en su forma y sólo con rasgos modernistas que no pretenden sorprender, que fue muy bien recibida por todo el público. El compositor, presente en la sala, agradeció el sostenido aplauso.

Gilberto Ponce Vera, Visiones Criticas, Thursday, 9 December, 2010

for Toy Piano and Tape

Performance at the 12th Annual Portland International Piano Festival, July 11-18, 2010, Portland, Oregon, USA
Thursday, 3 June, 2010, Doug Fir Lounge, Portland, Oregon, USA
Phyllis Chen – toy piano

Stephen Montague's 'Mirabella: A Tarantella' and Fabian Svensson's 'Toy Toccata' dispelled any notion the toy piano is unworthy of a virtuoso touch; the latter, a furious play of right hand on white keys and left hand on black, was intended precisely to counter the toy piano's image as cute and innocuous. Chen's fingers were fleet and precise, and she made the most of the instrument's limited dynamic range. By contrast, Takuji Kawai's "Prayer" and John Cage's 'Suite for Toy Piano,' the seminal toy piano piece, highlighted its quirky sound in music of beguiling simplicity. Electronic augmentation figured into Andrián Pertout's 'Exposiciones,' with a CD of sampled gamelan sounds accompanying increasingly convoluted chromatic arabesques, and Alvin Lucier's 'Nothing Is Real,' for grand piano, tape recorder and amplified teapot. An ingeniously simple sound exploration, the Lucier piece introduced fragments of the Beatles' 'Strawberry Fields Forever' on the piano, then repeated them in a recording on a tiny, tinny speaker in a teapot whose lid Chen manipulated like a wah-wah pedal...

James McQuillen, The Oregonian, Saturday, 5 June, 2010

for Toy Piano and Tape

Review of the ‘UnCaged Toy Piano: Phyllis Chen’
CD (Concert Artists Guild, New York, NY, USA)
Phyllis Chen – toy piano

“Description: For this unique disc Phyllis Chen performs solo toy piano compositions by John Cage, Julia Wolfe, Stephen Montague, Andrian Pertout, Karlheinz Essl as well as a couple of original pieces by Ms. Chen. Every week another surprising promo is given to me, this is one of the joys of having an adventurous music outlet like DMG. This week's undiscovered gem features Phyllis Chen performing pieces for toy piano from six composers. Over the past few years Margaret Leng Tan has been searching for and performing pieces for toy piano. Ms. Chen has also taken up the challenge and the results are quite fascinating. The toy piano has a smaller keyboard and a unique, rather quaint sound. Composer Stephen Montague is a favorite of mine, his piece "Mirabella a Tarantella" pushes the limits of the toy piano into a short tour-de-force. The pieces by Andrian Pertout and Karlheinz Essl are both for toy piano and CD, which add some surprising sounds to the toy piano's sound. Pertout's "Exposiciones" adds a clock-like ticking and a solemn thud to this dark, stark work. Essl's "Kalimba" featuring a hazy, echo effect to the piano making it even more harrowing as if time is slowing down and speeding up simultaneously. Cage's "Suite for Toy Piano" is more minimal and has a child-like melody at its center. Julia Wolfe's "East Broadway" is for toy piano and toy boombox and it is more intense and a bit harsh yet effective. Ms. Chen concludes the program with her own "The Memoirist - Parts I & III". "Part 1" is for toy piano, music box & frying pan. The toy piano and music box sound somewhat similar and work well together, even when Ms. Chen strikes the keys loudly. Cooking something in a frying pan adds a more homey vibe. "Part III" is for toy piano and bowls and again these sounds work well together when the bowls are ringing. I don't think that are there are (m)any discs out now of modern toy piano so check out this one and hear the wonders...”

Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery

for Toy Piano and Tape

Performance at the Adventurers Series
Thursday, 22 January, 2009, Symphony Space/Leonard Nimoy Thalia Theatre, New York, NY, USA
Phyllis Chen – toy piano

The toy piano pieces were less substantial and certainly flightier than the Bach and Janacek works, but their sheer peculiarity commanded attention. The first was 'Exposiciones,' a 2005 work by Andrián Pertout for a microtonal toy piano and a CD with recorded bell tones and a steady, hollow percussive sound. It begins slowly, with rhythmic and melodic allusions to gamelan music, but gradually becomes a swirl of thick-textured chromatic scale figures...

Allan Kozinn, The New York Times, Sunday, 24 January, 2009

Digressioni modali
for Tenor Saxophone and Pianoforte

Review of the ‘Crosscurrents: Noah Getz’ CD (Albany Records, Albany, NY, USA)
Noah Getz – tenor saxophone; Jeffrey Chappell – pianoforte

“In an era of digital smoke and mirrors that makes musical superheroes out of average talent at the click of a mouse, it is refreshing to hear Noah Getz playing music I can personally attest to having heard him perform impeccably at Carnegie Hall, Stella Adler School, and Manhattan School of Music. With his first-ever release, Crosscurrents (Albany Records), Dr Getz, an Artist-in-Residence at American University, blows onto the scene with tremendous depth of feeling, robustness of tone, and technical bravado that is sure to inspire musicians and saxophonists of all interests and backgrounds. Among this set are potent presentations on tenor, alto and soprano saxophones, with adroit and sensitive collaborations from pianist Jeffrey Chappell, all offering ‘a diverse exploration of contemporary classical repertoire containing a variety of jazz elements.’ To this end, one could not ask for a better ambassador on the horn than Noah Getz.

The opening Digressioni modali (Modal Digressions) unveils an expansive and accessible texture, immediately reminiscent of the ECM jazz label, which at times had me thinking I was listening to the more famous tenorman who shares Noah’s namesake. Don’t take my word for it: the comparison of timbre is clearly evident, especially when taking into account Andrián Pertout’s intent in “portray[ing] a sense of free improvisation within a strictly notated form.” Explorations of the melodic movement through the seven modes are both rich and rewarding, with harmonic shifts arriving at highly intuitive moments, which ultimately makes this finely crafted composition a genuinely satisfying experience...”

Dr. James Noye

La flor en la colina for Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Violoncello and Pianoforte

Performance at the XXIX Foro Internacional de Música Nueva ‘Manuel Enríquez’, 2007
31 May, 2007, Sala Blas Galindo, Centro Nacional de las Artes, México City, México
Onix Ensamble: Alejandro Escuer – flute; Fernando Domínguez – clarinet; Viktória Horti – violin; Edgardo Espinosa – violoncello; Krisztina Deli – pianoforte

La flor de la colina, del chileno Andrián Pertout, es una pieza enérgica y potente, trabajada a velocidades diversas (a veces consecutivas, a veces simultáneas) y con la sólida presencia del piano a la manera de un ostinato. Hay aquí, apenas, unos instantes de respiro, y la conclusión de la obra es, a la vez, fogosa y fugaz.”

Juan Arturo Brennan, La Jornada, Sábado 30 Junio, 2007

La flor en la colina
for Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Violoncello and Pianoforte

Performance by the Sonic Art Ensemble
Saturday, 1 April, 2006, Music Workshop, Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Sydney, Australia
Sonic Art Ensemble: Marshall McGuire – Artistic Director; Christine Draeger – flute; Margery Smith – bass clarinet; Rowan Martin – violin; Adrian Wallis – violoncello; Bernadette Balkus – pianoforte

“Sydney's Seymour Group (formed in 1977) has been re-named the Sonic Art Ensemble and newly launched, opening with an engaging program, Southern Stars, focused on work coming out of Central and South America. Artistic director Marshall McGuire told his audience that the program was in part inspired by work he had encountered on his Churchill Fellowship travels in the USA, hearing the music of American Mason Bates, cuban-born Tania Leon (he'd enjoyed a whole evening of her music with its Cuban Rhumba swagger), and Argentinian Osvaldo Golijov. It was Golijov's Passion of St Mark heard at a Sydney Festival that first alerted McGuire to the composer. The work had been conducted by Anthony Fogg, founding conductor of the Seymour Group.”

“...Melbourne-based composer Andrián Pertout comes from Chile, born to a Slovenian father ('There are 100,000 Dalmatians in Chile', he quips). The Slovenian heritage is important for Pertout. He asks the flautist to play the key tune from the work for us 'at real speed', explaining that it will be much slower when we next hear it. La flor en la colina (The flower on the hill, 2003-04) has the surging power of a suspenseful movie score with a driven piano underpinned by a humming cello over which flute and violin dialogue, furiously together and apart. A spacious slow movement follows, violin and rumbling piano miles apart, a lyrical reflective realm soon made turbulent, a veritable romantic wind storm that settles into a minimalist pulse before shaking itself loose again and simply stopping. This demanding work warrants more hearings, its folk origins much less prominent anchors than in the Golijov and Bates.”

Keith Gallasch, RealTime + OnScreen, Issue 73, June-July, 2006

Echoes from the Past for Flute

Performance by the Society for Chromatic Art (SCAnyc)
Tuesday, 31 May, 2005, Christ and St. Stephen's Church, New York, NY, USA
John McMurtery – flute

“Composers James Romig and Edward Taylor responded proactively to the challenges facing emerging composers by founding Society for Chromatic Art, a new music ensemble that is now entering its eighth season of presenting concerts featuring young, but highly accomplished, performers. Flautist John McMurtery and pianist Ashlee Mack performed nine pieces by up and coming composers at Christ and St. Stephen's Church, an intimate venue on the Upper West Side that is a friendly haven for young classical musicians seeking a New York performance space.”

“... Many composers on the program employed an impressive array of extended techniques for flute. Sun Mi Ro's Summer's Dream used glissandi as an idee fixe throughout, which served as a punctuating device amid long, arching and extremely wide-ranging melodic lines. Derek Charke, a composer as well as a flutist himself, presented a well-composed flute part in his duo Distant Voices. While the language of the piece was attractive, Distant Voices suffered from a lack of editorial restraint – it could have easily been more effective at half the length. Andrian Pertout's Echoes from the Past, on the other hand, played with a large array of extended flute tricks – glissandi, multiphonics, percussive attacks, vocalisms – while maintaining an integrated and compelling formal design.”

Christian Carey, Splendid Online Music Magazine

Sonus dulcis for Piano Trio

Performance at the SCI (Society of Composers Inc.) Region II Conference, 9-10 April, 2004, Geneseo, New York, USA
Saturday, 4 April, 2004, Wadsworth Auditorium, State University of New York, School of Performing Arts, Geneseo, New York, USA
Vladimir Pritsker violin; George Macero violoncello; Steven Heyman pianoforte

“This aptly named work for piano trio provided an opportunity to hear Pritsker, Macero, and Heyman perform music that is squarely in the Western tradition of writing yet based on gestures and materials far removed.  The composer has built the piece on the Japanese In scale and the opening ideas of the work suggest, without copying, links to the traditions of high art styles in Japanese music.  The musical ideas are developed and expanded in fairly rapid succession building in complexity and rhythmic complexity.  The relatively quiet style of the opening appears periodically to divert the momentum of the piece only to be pushed on a few moments later.  Ultimately, however, the work subsides quietly.  Mr. Pertout has written a work that is both emotionally alive and musically rewarding to hear.”

John G. Bilotta, SCI Newsletter, May-June, 2004, XXXIV:3

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