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All Photos by Bert Janssen
www.bertjanssen.eu




Een vilein gebied (release date: December 15, 2015)


Six songs (in Dutch) on poetry by Mathieu Weggeman, performed by Simurg on an extended array of instruments and introducing cellist Stijn Saveniers on vocals. In a radical departure from our earlier releases, the music flirts with many genres including cabaret, pop, minimal and tango.

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NB This is not a stand-alone release, but a companion to Weggeman's verse anthology "Een vilein gebied"

Book + CD are available from every book store in the Netherlands. You can also order online, e.g. here:




Absences (2011)


The second CD of the Simurg Ensemble sees them taking a more consistently avant-garde direction, further defining and cementing their unique sound.

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To purchase at:

  1. Wolfgang Güdden: Sonate for clarinet, cello and piano - strictly classical in form, highly contemporary in material: quarter tones, glissandi and multiphonics make up a large part of the clarinet and cello parts. The piano is mainly treated as a percussion instrument, adding colour and depth to the clarinet/cello duet
  2. Robert Weirauch: Tenebrae - written after a visit to the Nazi extermination camp of Buchenwald: humanity at its lowest, absolute darkness of the human psyche. A bleak and extreme piece
  3. Robert Weirauch: Narcissus - for contrabass solo. The original version for solo cello can be found on the ensemble's first CD, "Simurg Ensemble Plays Robert Weirauch"
  4. John Slangen: Volucris - written for Simurg. A short piece developing and varying several compact themes. The two parts are linked by a short clarinet cadenza
  5. Juan Allende-Blin: Silences Interrompus - for clarinet, contrabass and piano. A "soundscape" piece, mainly consisting of silences pierced by percussive and improvisatory gestures from the trio. At the end of the piece, the orchestration changes to historical clarinet, gusla (a small one-stringed fiddle) and japanese bamboo bells


Simurg Ensemble plays Robert Weirauch (2009)


In nine pieces the Simurg Ensemble offers an overview of Robert Weirauch’s best work in this century. Some of the compositions were originally written for a drawing room ensemble. Wherever required, the composer has adjusted the original pieces for the Simurg Ensemble; the result is a surprisingly balanced sound.


The interpretation of the song texts on this CD is in perfect harmony with the instrumental performance. The German mezzo-soprano Regula Boeninger sings both the delicate voiceover in Schwüler Sonntag, the cheeky impudence of Kunkelsuse, and the poetry of Herbst. For more information, please visit her website: www.regula-boeninger.com

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To purchase at:

  1. De Profundis - (bass) clarinet, cello & contrabass. Starting "out of the depths", the music struggles for peace and harmony, which are finally reached in a drawn-out coda. The use of quarter tones and the three dark-timbred instruments give the piece extra weight and intensity
  2. Fantasie Fatale - a virtuoso piece, highlighting the clarinet. There's a lot of eastern European influences (both classical and folk), as well as some Rachmaninov
  3. Herbst - voice, cello & piano. Poetry by Rainer Maria Rilke. A very quiet and introspective piece, inspired by the music of George Crumb. Guest appearance by mezzosoprano Regula Boeninger
  4. Golem - The sound is very Jewish, klezmer-style; slow recitativo-style verses, heavy and brooding intermezzi and fast dance refrains
  5. Narcissus - solo cello and optional dancer, based on the myth of Narcissus and Echo
  6. Bolero - for contrabass (fifths tuning) and piano. In one tempo, with one relentless rhythm, the piece builds up towards a rather massive and noisy ending
  7. Kunkelsuse - text: Fritz Grasshoff. A fast and cheeky cabaret song about the rather promiscuous Suse, who beds every man in sight. Featuring Regula Boeninger
  8. Schwüler Sonntag - more Grasshoff; a slow song describing the humidity and heat of a summer afternoon. Featuring Regula Boeninger
  9. Volver - a fast tango, light and "poppy", with an odd 15/16 beat middle part