Hipermilonga alla Thomas Bernhard (1998) — Pablo Ortiz

"I wrote Hipermilonga for the Verdehr Trio, thinking of the Argentinean milonga, which is a sort of fast tango. This is the first of a number of pieces that I am currently writing based on milongas (mostly for solo instruments). The way in which the piece unfolds, constantly adding a little bit of something to a somewhat repetitive pattern, was an attempt to incorporate in my music some literary devices that I admire in the late Austrian writer Thomas Bernhard. The quintessential tango instrument, the bandoneon, also happens to be from Austria."
  —  Pablo Ortiz

The world premiere of Hipermilonga alla Thomas Bernhard was on August 4, 1998 at the Monteverde Nature Preserve Lodge, Monteverde, Costa Rica.



Pablo Ortiz (born 1956, Buenos Aires, Argentina) was first trained in his native Buenos Aires, where he received a degree from the Universidad Catolica Argentina. At twenty-seven, he came to New York and completed a doctorate at Columbia University where he studied with Mario Davidovsky. He also studied composition with Jack Beeson, Chou Wen Chung, Jacques Louis Monod, Fred Lerdahl, Gerardo Gandini, and Roberto Caamano.

Ortiz's works include chamber and solo music, vocal, orchestral, electronic compositions, and music for plays and films. Among those who have performed his compositions are the Buenos Aires Philharmonic, the Arditti String Quartet, Speculum Musicae, the Ensemble Contrechamps of Geneva, Music Mobile, Continuum, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, and the Teatre of Voices. His music has been heard at international festivals in Salzburg (Aspekte), Geneva (Extasis), Frankfurt, Zurich, and Sao Paulo.

Ortiz was a fellow at the Composer's Conference at Wellesley College in 1986 and 1988, and he was commissioned by the Fromm Foundation in 1992. In 1993, he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. He received a Charles Ives Fellowship (1996) and an Academy Award (2008) from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 1997 and 1998 he was commissioned to write two chamber operas, Parodia and Una voz en el viento by the Centro Experimental Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires. In 1999, the Koussevitzky Foundation commissioned Raya en el mar for the San Franciso Contemporary Music Players. He received a grant in 2000 from Fideicomiso para la cultura Mexico-US to write bilingual childrenŐs songs, and in 2004 the Gerbode Foundation commissioned Oscuro for Chanticleer and the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players. He has also been awarded the Roberto Caamano Prize by the National Academy of Fine Arts in Argentina.

Ortiz is Professor of Composition at the University of California, Davis. Previously, he taught composition and was co-director of the Electronic Music Studio at the University of Pittsburgh.

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