Mladen Tarbuk: Twist

September 25, 2021 / ISCM


Mladen Tarbuk (b. 1962), one of the most versatile composers and conductors of his generation, developed his music career in many directions. He has composed 90 works, ranging from chamber music to large symphonic forms, or pieces for music theatre. Their performances gained a wide international resonance and enthusiasm of audience, critics and interpreters. His compositions have been performed on many specialized festivals of contemporary music, such as ISCM World Music Days, Gaudeamus Festival Amsterdam, Trieste Prima, Moscow Autumn, Music Biennial Zagreb or Wien Modern, as well as on the classic festivals, such as Enescu Festival Bucharest, Bregenzer Festspiele or National Music Festival. The performers were among others Friedrich Cerha and die reihe, Reinhard de Leeuw and ASKO / Schoenberg, Sinfonietta Cracovia, Nordic Chamber Orchestra and Wien Concert-Verein Orchester. As a conductor he developed a noticeable international career, conducting throughout the Europe, North America, Mexico and Israel. In 2013-14 he held the position of music director, and 2014-2017 of general artistic director at Dubrovnik Summer Festival. 2002-2005 he was the general director of Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb. Since 2013 he is a full-time professor at the Zagreb Music Academy where he teaches composition, symphonic conducting and symphonic orchestra. From 2017 he worked on many projects of Hochschule für Künste Bern as its guest professor.

Twist for chamber orchestra, composed in 2015, extensively uses quartertones. It was inspired by T. S. Eliot’s poem “Ash Wednesday.”

Mladen Tarbuk: Twist (2015)
performed by the Asko-Schoenberg Ensemble
conducted by Reinbert de Leeuw




The International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM) is a premier forum for the advancement, dissemination and interchange of new music from around the world. Through ISCM, our members promote contemporary music in all its varied forms, strengthening musical life in their local contexts and making their music and its creators known to world.