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Mindaugas Urbaitis

From Unearthing The Music

Mindaugas Urbaitis. Photo: Arūnas Baltėnas

Mindaugas Urbaitis (born June 1, 1952 in Kaunas ) is a Lithuanian composer.


Life

Urbaitis studied composition until 1975 at the State Lithuanian Conservatory in Vilnius with Julius Juzeliūnas afterwards continuing his postgraduate studies there until 1977. From 1991 to 1996 he was chairman of the Lithuanian Composers Union, and from 1991 to 1996 he organized the Gaida Baltic Music Festival in Vilnius. He is a teacher at the Music and Theater Academy of Lithuania, where he lectures on European post-war music, 20th century American music, and advanced composition techniques.

Urbaitis is considered a significant Lithuanian representative of minimalism. His works have been performed at international music festivals such as the Gaida festival (Vilnius, Lithuania), Marių klavyrai (Klaipėda, Lithuania), Iš arti (Kaunas, Lithuania), Arsenals (Riga, Latvia), Musikhost (Odense), Baltic Festival (Stockholm), Balticum (Stuttgart), Bornholm Music Festival (Denmark), Schreyahner Herbst (Germany), Jauna muzika (Vilnius, Lithuania), Vale of Glamorgan Festival (Wales), Vilnius Festival (Lithuania), Wien Modern (Austria), Thomas Mann Festival (Nida, Lithuania), Helsinki Biennial (Finland), Usedomer Musikfestival (Germany), Euro Music Festival (Leipzig), and others.

Mindaugas Urbaitis has lectured on contemporary Lithuanian music at courses and seminars in various countries. He has participated as guest composer at the Musikhost Festival in Denmark (1992), the Bornholm Musik Festival (1993), and the Vale of Glamorgan Festival (1996). The composer leaded master-classes at the Tampere Conservatoire, Finland (2000) and London College of Music and Media (2001). In 2000 his composition Stillness for piano and string quartet won the 2nd Prize in the composers' competition dedicated to the 125th anniversary of M. K. Čiurlionis' birth, which was organized by Lithuanian Ministry of Culture, Lithuanian Composers' Union and Lithuanian-American Fine Arts Association. In 2002, the composer wrote a ballet "Acid City" commissioned by the Vilnius Festival and staged at the Lithuanian Opera and Ballet Theatre by the Amsterdam-based choreographer Krzysztof Pastor. In the same year this ballet won the prize for the best stage work at the composers' competition arranged by the Lithuanian Composers' Union. In 2003, Mindaugas Urbaitis won the Best Music for the Theatre Award of the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture for the ballet "Acid City" and music for drama production "The Beginnings. K.Donelaitis. The Seasons" (director Eimuntas Nekrošius). In 2010, he was awarded the 3rd prize (for Three Liturgical Choirs) at the competition of choral composition, organized by the Lithuanian Folk Culture Centre and the Lithuanian Composers' Union. In 2012, he was decorated with the honorary insignia "Carry Your Light and Faith" by the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture.

Works

  • Bach Variations I for Instrumental Quartet , 1988
  • Lithuanian Folk Music for String Orchestra, 1991
  • Lacrimosa for choir, 1994
  • Celebrabo te, Domine , 1996, 2000
  • Tre movimenti for mixed ensemble, 1997
  • Recycling Tango for Mixed Ensemble, 1998
  • Final piece for mixed ensemble, 1998
  • Fanfare for the Vilnius Festival for Orchestra, 1999
  • The case Wagner for mixed ensemble, 1999
  • Stillness for string quartet, 2000
  • Bach Variations II for instrumental sextet , 2000
  • Hommage à JJ for 18 stringed instruments, 2001
  • Tromba nostalgica for solo instrument and piano, 2002
  • Three Liturgical Choirs: 1. Si sumpsero, 2nd Salvo Regina 3. Domine Jesu Christe , 2005

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Contemporary Music, Sound Art and Media in Lithuania: From a Historical Perspective to the Present

Text partially adapted from the German Wikipedia.