Koen Cosaert is director of the Royal Carillon School “Jef Denyn”, one of the leading institutes for carillon art in the world under the Patronage of Her Majesty Queen Mathilde. Since 1987 Koen Cosaert has been teaching carillon, campanology, harmony and music theory at this institute. He was visiting professor for carillon and campanology at the St.-Petersburg University in Russia from 2007 until 2016. He is carillonneur for the Belgian cities of Kortrijk, Roeselare, Harelbeke and Izegem. He performed carillon recitals and gave master classes all over Europe, Australia, Canada, Japan and the United States. As campanologist he lectures on topics of campanological interest and has published numerous books and articles. Koen Cosaert is vice-president of the Flemish Carillon Association (VBV) and has been secretary for the European Countries of the Executive Committee of the World Carillon Federation from 2011 until 2018.
Lecture: From Svon to Carillon - Three centuries of Bell Culture in Russia
Saturday, September 7 at 11:00 AM
Music Hall Room 130
Saint-Petersburg was built by Tsar Peter the Great as a new city in 1703 on the banks of the river Neva. The plan of the town was inspired by the city of Amsterdam in The Netherlands, replicating its canals, the splendid façades and its carillons. Under the reigns of Peter the Great and his daughter Elisabeth, five carillons were installed in an attempt to create a modern Western city in a medieval Russia. For centuries Saint-Petersburg was the only place in the country with carillons. Meanwhile, the traditional chiming was continued in the rest of Russia as part of the rites of the Orthodox Church. During the 19th century, carillons in Saint-Petersburg were neglected and one by one disappeared except for the one in the Saint-Peter-and-Paul-cathedral, the mausoleum of the Tsar family. That instrument remained and only played automatically. The revolution of 1917 made an end of the traditional orthodox chiming and resulted in the disappearance of many church bells. With the reopening of East-Europe to the West at the end of the 20th century, both traditions revived. Churches were restored to their original function and slowly many bell-towers were refurbished with new peals. Jo Haazen, former director of the Royal Carillon School in Mechelen, started two projects to renew the carillon tradition in Saint-Petersburg. The first attempt to restore what was left of the carillon in the Saint-Peter-and-Paul-cathedral did not work out, as the tuning of those 18th century bells was too inaccurate. In continuation of the project, a brand new instrument in concert pitch was built by a Dutch bell-foundry. The carillon was donated by Flanders on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of Saint-Petersburg. In addition, a second instrument was installed in the premises of the palace of Peterhof. Since then, many excellent young Russian carillonneurs were trained at the State University of Saint-Petersburg under the tutelage of Jo Haazen.
Saturday, September 7 at 2:00 PM
Stanton Memorial Carillon
Georg Philipp Telemann
Russian Piano Music
From Album for the Young, Op. 39
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
arr. Koen Cosaert
Belgian Carillon Music
Kristiaan van Ingelgem
|Music for an Early Spring Morning
|Preludium in d
The German composer Georg Philipp Telemann was a good friend of Johann Sebastian Bach. In his days, he was even more famous than Bach. He had a splendid career as composer and was music director of Hamburg, one of the most important cities in Germany. Telemann left us a large volume of music both for church and court. His concertos were inspired by the Italian style, as we can hear in the three-part Concerto for Harpsichord.
The Seasons by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is a set of twelve pieces for piano, illustrating different moods of the twelve months of the year. Autumn Song evokes the pensive mood of October. The most popular piece of the twelve was Barcarolle for the month of June. It has been arranged for many different instruments and ensembles.
Tchaikovsky is forever associated with his native town Saint-Petersburg. The arrangements of the three pieces from Album for the Young were made especially for a guest-recital on the new carillon of the Saint-Peters-and-Paul Cathedral on the banks of the river Neva. This instrument was donated by the Royal Carillon School of Mechelen to revitalize the carillon tradition of the old Russian capital, once started by Tsar Peter the Great.
Fairy Tale on the Name “Fabiola” was composed by Kristiaan van Ingelgem in 1998 as the required piece for the fourth edition of the International Carillon Competition Queen Fabiola competition. In 2019, van Ingelgem celebrated his 75th birthday, and performing Fairy Tale is a wonderful homage to this renowned Belgian organist and carillonneur.
In 2010, the 500th anniversary of the carillon was celebrated in Belgium commemorating the construction of the first carillon keyboard in 1510 in the Flemish city of Oudenaarde. For this occasion, Geert D’hollander wrote Bell Canto, quoting several folk songs from the Low Countries on carillons and bells.
Music for an Early Spring Morning was composed at the request of the Yale University Guild of Carillonneurs, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the carillon at Yale in 2016.
Preludium in d for carillon was created by Jef Denyn during the improvisation of his summer recitals on the famous St.-Romboutstoren of Mechelen. It illustrates all the expressive and dynamic possibilities of the carillon. Soon this prelude became so popular that Denyn played it almost at every concert. As it was originally an improvisation, Denyn never notated this piece. Fortunately, he made a recording on His Master’s Voice in 1925. The first notation was made in 1974, and the score was published by the Belgian Carillon Guild.