Them and Us?

Sun. 29/09/24, 7:00 pm
Stadtcasino Basel
Tickets for the concerts will be available from August 19.
Yurii Pikush

Domi Res Militaris (2024) CH
(commissioned by Warsaw Autumn)

Sergej Newski

Göttin der Geschichte (Goddess of History) for mezzo-soprano and orchestra (2024) CH
(commissioned by the Basel Sinfonietta, Westdeutscher Rundfunk Cologne (WDR), Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin (RSB))

Aleksandra Słyż

Suspended in Ratios (2024) CH
(commissioned by Warsaw Autumn)

Stefan Keller

Ein sicherer Hafen (A Safe Harbour) for mezzo-soprano, narrator and orchestra (2024) CH
(commissioned by the Basel Sinfonietta)


A look to the East exposes an abyss. The world is coming apart at the seams, even in our own backyard: in Central Eastern Europe. A war is raging in the Ukraine that keeps the world on its toes. A new Iron Curtain is dividing Europe. What consequences will this have and how will it affect us? The four premieres at the opening of the season pose not only questions, but also perspectives: creatively multifaceted and discursive.

Yurii Pikush is from the Ukraine, Sergei Nevsky is a Russian living in Germany, Aleksandra Słyż comes from Poland and Stefan Keller is Swiss. Mezzo-soprano Christina Daletska acts as ambassador. She was born in the Ukraine and lives in Switzerland. What they all have in common is a critical stance. There is Nevsky: he has been criticizing Russian politics for many years – also in journalistic articles.

His new work «Göttin der Geschichte» (Goddess of History) for mezzo-soprano and orchestra is based on a text by Lithuanian composer Thomas Venclova. «Hail to you, forgotten Goddess of History, / with your rocket-shell retinue, slaughtered soldiery», read the opening words. In «Domi Res Militaris», on the other hand, Pikush examines how much responsibility the individual bears in «domestic military affairs».

With «Suspended in Ratios», Słyż presents an electroacoustic drone composition to explore relationships between intonation and microtonality. By contrast, in «Ein sicherer Hafen» (A Safe Harbour) for mezzo-soprano, narrator and orchestra based on words by Melinda Nadj Abonji and Iryna Shuvalova, Keller poses the Swiss-tinged question of how much neutrality is acceptable and permissible in times of crisis and war.

Pre-concert talk at 6.15 pm

In cooperation with Warsaw Autumn
With the support of FONDATION SUISA

CH Swiss premiere
Program subject to change

Photo: Lucia Hunziker


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