Drei Orchesterstücke



  • instrumentation
    2 flutes (2nd doubling alto flute and piccolo)
    2 oboes
    2 clarinets (2nd doubling bass clarinet)
    2 bassoons
    2 horns
    2 trumpets
    1 percussionist
    6 violins I
    5 violins II
    4 violas
    4 violoncelli
    2 double basses
  • duration c. 19 min.
  • 1st Prize and Special Prize of the City of Kotka in the II. International Uuno Klami Composition Competition 2009 in Finland
  • audio sample
    Kymi Sinfonietta, conductor: Yasuo Shinozaki
    I. mp3
    II. mp3
    III. mp3
  • published by:
    Theophilius Productions
  • PDF (1st page)



For my composition „Drei Orchesterstücke“ (Three orchestra pieces), I first created 172 chords containing all 12 tones and consisting of a layering of all 11 intervals. The range of all these chords is the same and it is fairly wide. As each tone and each interval exists exactly once, they symbolize a concerted, well-balanced and harmonic entity. Each of the three pieces is based on a different order of the 172 chords. So in effect I had three blocks of material (chords) with an identical surface but different internal character, from which I formed three completely different figures – working much like a sculptor. The beginning of the last movement resembles the first one, and appears like an accelerated version of it. But quickly it evolves into a different direction and returns only at the very end to the same point, where the first movement ends too. In addition to the orderly blocks of material from the chords, there are small motives that intrude into the music, pushing in more and more and thus causing a structural disorder. These side thoughts are similar in all three movements, which constitutes a formal aspect that encompasses the complete work. The slow second movement is noticeably longer than the other two and is dominated by the sound of the strings. While in the other two pieces, individual parts of the chords stand out, the middle movement focuses on a reciprocating change between noise and tone, and a gradual shift of the sound. The small motives and side thoughts reappear as well. At the center of this movement, there is a peculiar standstill. The strings rest, and the winds recite a music that somehow lacks a tempo. After a longer while, the strings rejoin to complete the original development.

Joachim F.W. Schneider

Foto © Heikki Y. RissanenPreisverleihung

Modernist wins the Composition Competition


The informed audience could hardly have had anything against the first prize going to German Joachim F.W. Schneider (b. 1970) for Drei Orchesterstücke. It was the most modernist and at the same time the most original piece in the competition. (...)

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Hannu-Ilari Lampila
(HELSINGIN SANOMAT, 21 September 2009)


Finals concerts a high standard


The Drei Orchesterstücke by the winner of the competition, German Joachim F.W. Schneider, rely strongly on the German modernist tradition. Their structure is seamless and unproblematic. (...)

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Reijo Paavola
(KYMEN SANOMAT, 21 September 2009)


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