FRAGMENTS &

hypnotic images

We work intensely on Hungarian composer György Kurtág’s (1926 – ) Kafka-Fragmente. The longest of his vocal cycles consisting of forty songs for soprano and violin organized into four parts of unequal length. The prose texts and fragments are taken from Franz Kafka’s diaries and from posthumously published letters and stories. Kurtág started composing the piece in 1985 without a preconceived plan, completed in 1987, and premiered it the same year. The texts, which range from quick jottings to powerful almost explosive sketches, permit a large variety of musical settings. For the most part they possess a philosophical dimension that touches on Kafka’s existential questioning,
which the composer has made his own.