Controtempo #7 | Contemporary Music Festival

The French Academy in Rome – Villa Medici wanted to revive the Controtempo festival after a few years of interruption, presenting a rich seventh edition that will take place from 21 to 25 April 2020.

The festival, which has now gained international recognition, continues its exploration of the most recent trends in contemporary music, without ruling out forays into a past that is thus brought up to date. Once again this year, it invites some of the most innovative composers and performers on the contemporary scene. First and foremost its artistic director, Francesco Filidei, recently acclaimed for the creation of The Flood alongside Joël Pommerat at the Opéra-Comique in Paris, who ideally synthesizes the spirit of the festival thanks to his dual Franco-Italian ties and his past as a resident composer at the French Academy in Rome (2012-2013).

Francesco Filidei has decided to dedicate the 2020 edition of Controtempo to the figure of Gérard Pesson, a leading French composer and also a former resident of the French Academy in Rome (1990-1992). Gérard Pesson was notably the professor of composition at the Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de danse de Paris of Bastien David and Mikel Urquiza, the two composition residents at the Villa Medici for the year 2019-2020, whose works will be presented during the festival. The performers chosen by the artistic director represent the best of contemporary European ensembles: mdi, PMCE, 2e2M, the Quartetto Maurice and the Ensemble Cairn.

Programme (subject to changes):

Tuesday 21 April

Ensemble 2e2M

Yann RobinPhigures
Gérard Pesson Nocturne en quatuor
Mikel Urquiza – Cinq pièges brefs
Sebastian RivasL’ombre d’un doute
Mauro LanzaJohn Conway in Gondola
Francesca VerunelliUltimi Fiori
Christophe BertrandSanh

Wednesday 22 April

Ensemble Mdi in collaboration with Nuova Consonanza

Mikel UrquizaContrapluma
David Bastien

Francesca VerunelliCinemaolio
Mikel UrquizaLes lueurs se sont multipliées
David BastienUmbilicus Rupestri
Gerard PessonCassation

Thursday 23 April

Quartetto Maurice

Helmuth Lachenmann Grido String Quartet n.3
Gérard PessonBitume String Quartet n°2
Zeno BaldiRuggine

Friday 24 April

PMCE – Parco della Musica Contemporanea Ensemble

Gérard Pesson Un peu de fièvre (1995)
Clara Iannotta Paw-marks in wet cement (ii) (2015–18)
Tristan Murail Near Death Experience d’après L’Ile des morts d’Arnold Böcklin (2017)
Kaija Saariaho Aer (1991)

Saturday 25 April

Ensemble Cairn

Gérard Pesson
La vita è come l’albero di Natale
Non sapremo mai di questo mi
Cinq poèmes de Sandro Penna
Combier – 6e poème de Sandro Penna (Fiume deserto)
Gérard Pesson
Deux mélodies carthaginoises
Vexierbilder Rom
Transformations d’un menuet de Mozart
1r mélodie de Solitaire mikado


Practical Information:

Admission: 10 € – 5 € (concessions and students)

The concerts will take place in the Grand Salon of Villa Medici, except for the one on Friday 24th April which will be held at the Auditorium – Parco della Musica di Roma.

French Academy in Rome – Villa Medici
Viale Trinità dei Monti, 1
00187 Roma
Metro Spagna or minibus 119

Auditorium Parco della Musica di Roma
Viale Pietro de Coubertin, 30
00196 Roma