Culture

The premiere concert culminates in a tribute to the composer Halit Kasapolli

Kori

With an entire premiere repertoire, the Choir has performed pieces from baroque to contemporary music. Meanwhile, the uniqueness of the evening was reserved for "Bash ne zeman da dzelmëni". It marked the 65th anniversary of the death of the Pejan composer Halit Kasapolli.

The premiere was the common denominator of the works in the concert repertoire of the Choir of the Philharmonic of Kosovo, under the direction of Hajrullah Syla. The elegantly woven program has quickly found the harmony of the voices, and a special piece was that of Hali Kasapolli, "Bash ne zeman te djelmënija", performed as a tribute on the 65th anniversary of the composer's death. Other works such as "Like a Touch of Rain" by the conductor and composer Syla have also been unique

Every time the Choir of the Philharmonic of Kosovo seems to have a concert in front of the local audience, the halls are full. The same thing happened on Thursday night at the "Shën Ndou" Catholic Church in Pristina - a frequent meeting place between the Philharmonic choir and its admirers - in one of the spaces with the most suitable acoustics for choral performances. After the successful tour in Italy with three concerts, this formation returned with a concert to the place where the history of its formation began, here twenty lives ago.

It offered the public a repertoire rich in many aspects, starting from works that span from the 17th century to the 21st century. After filling the podium of the Church, the members of the choir took their respective places around the piano - with which, this evening, pianist Andi Duraku accompanied them - while at the very end, under applause, the conductor Hajrullah Syla joined them, who, after greeting the audience, returned to Kori to start the first half.  

"Sei, lieber Tag, willkommen" (Welcome, dear day) by Johann Michael Bach, was a work which, with the harmony of the Choir, created a warm and welcoming sound. As this piece progressed, the dynamics and phrasing were masterfully controlled by the conductor, occasionally gifting beautiful polyphonic moments and ethereal harmonies that filled the hall. "All Seems Beautiful to Me" by Eric Whitacre offered a similar feeling, even though it was composed 300 years later. Interspersed with various emotions through the voices of the choir, the impression of upliftment is given, while the ending brought an overall sense of peace with the voices dissolving into silence. 

Given the fact that all the performed works were premieres for the Kosovar public, one of them stood out even more for its uniqueness. In honor of the work of the composer Halit Kasapolli - who devoted a large part of his short-lived activity to the processing of choral songs on popular themes - the Philharmonic Choir performed "Bash ne zeman ta djelmënë" for the first time, as a tribute for the 65th anniversary of the composer's death.  

Masterfully, Kori once again demonstrated the power of the voice. They become one to convey the sensitivity of the work and especially of its words, while the melancholy was once again broken by the applause. 
Soprano Urta Haziraj, a member of the Choir, singled out the diversity of the works. 

"Initially, when the program was presented, I liked it very much because it brought together different eras. I don't sleep in a whole concert era. Of course, the tribute to the composer was a special feeling to perform his work with a really sad text, but this is a concert and we must manage to present it in the best possible way", she said in a statement for TIME, adding that he felt that the audience shared all the works performed. 

"I am the World" by Lauren Biggs, a composition of 2002, was the next point which brought a contemporary spirit in terms of style, as the Choir was neatly accompanied by pianist Andi Duraku. 
Durak's collaboration with conductor Syla and Korin has been natural to result further and as fruitful, even though playing multiple premieres has been a challenge in itself. 

"It is always a pleasure to be in collaboration with this wonderful Choir and conductor Hajrullah Syla. Indeed, these works were being heard for the first time by the public and they were a challenge, but considering the professionalism of each member of the Choir, of the orchestra, it was really a pleasure to be a part of this program tonight", Duraku said. . 

On Thursday night in the "Shën Ndou" Catholic Church in Pristina, which serves as a frequent meeting place between the Philharmonic Choir and its admirers, the appropriate acoustics punctuated the Choir's performance 

Conductor Syla for this concert, in addition to working with foreign world works and the tribute to Halit Kasapolli, has also included his work "Like a Touch of Rain" in the repertoire. At this point of the concert, in addition to the Choir and piano formation, the Harkor Ensemble of the Kosovo Philharmonic joined them on the podium. In five minutes, Syla's work took the audience into the depths of sharp, whirring sounds that begin with strings and end with harmonies. 

"My work is a world premiere, because it has not been played before, it was created just for this concert, it is a work with the English title 'Like...' it is written for piano, string ensemble and mixed choir and I am very satisfied with the interpretation of the work", said the conductor. 

The choral ensemble showed its wide vocal capacity in "Iuppiter". During the interpretation there was also play with the voice. Imitations of rustling, vibrato, crescendo meanwhile the musical description of the character of Jupiter, as a mythological figure of great power and glory, is expressed through the dynamics and intonation of the Chorus.

The end of the concert was marked with "Spirit" from Rawn Harbor arranged by Barabra Wesley Baker. Quite unlike the other nine interpretations, "Spirit" uplifts morale with an energy that expresses the "gospel" style of singing, which is dedicated to exalting the divine through allegro. 

This ten-piece program, accompanied by piano and strings and with a full audience, was a forerunner of the summer season activities for the Choir. Even for the conductor, it had its own peculiarities as a presentation. According to him, the interpretation of the choir was successful.

"It was a new premiere for the Kosovar public, Hali Kasapolli's work was a work that was elaborated by me and adapted for our Choir. All the works were quite well achieved and were noticed by the public who received the concert very well", he said.