Biography

Compositions

Discography

Books

Architecture


LIST OF COMPOSITIONS

OPERA – ORATORIO

THE WAR OF THE SONS OF LIGHT AGAINST THE SONS OF DARKNESS– 1971
Based on the Dead Sea Scrolls
Libretto by Alan Roland (English) and fragments from the Scroll in Hebrew and Roman Soldiers Song in Latin

Characters:
Teacher of Righteousness - Baritone
Alexander Jannaeus - Tenor
Titus -  Bass - Baritone
The Messiah - Boy of sixteen years

Mixed chorus of the member of Qumran Community
Chorus of the Qumran Warriors of Light and Darkness
Chorus of Roman Soldiers
Chorus of Dancers – 'The Warriors of Light and darkness' and 'Roman Legion Soldiers'

Orchestra:
2+1; 2+1; 1+2+1; 2+1/ 6;4;3;1/ Timp., 4 Perc., Harp.
Cél./ Strings

Duration: 90'

The action of the opera takes place in a prophetic vision of the Teacher of Righteousness, chief of the Dead Sea Scroll Sect, at the crossroads of time between B.C.E and C.E.
The setting is their community at Qumran, overlooking the Dead Sea during the hours just before dawn. Apprehension is expressed by a chorus of the members of the sect, concerning the approaching conquest by Roman power. They are reassured by the Teacher, who recalls how the people of Israel previously survived in exile and strove towards the Light under the state domination of both Egypt and Babylonia. During their recounting of past sufferings, Alexander Jannaeus, the tyrannical King who had persecuted the Sect, suddenly appears, called forth for Judgment from eternity's resting place. Also called upon in a vision of the Teacher is Titus, the as yet unborn Roman general, who later conquered Jerusalem, in order to view the future conquerors of Rome, to witness its final defeat. A confrontation develops between Light and Darkness, between spiritual illumination and earthly ambition and conquest. The tension of the confrontation gives birth to the great vision of the War Scroll, a final war between the forces of Light and Darkness. The Teacher in the vision describes the great battle between the Sons of Light, the spiritual heiress of the ancient Jewish tradition, and the Roman Legions, represented by Choruses and dancers, terminating in the victory of Light.
Dawn arrives at Qumran with the appearance of the Messiah, proclaiming a new era of a great synthesis from amongst the Jewish, Greek and Roman genius. But it will be an era where the Messiah needs the dispersion of the Jews in order to be the welding force, the softening touch of conscience in the West. The teacher with profound sadness then calls the Sons of Light to voluntary exile, to repair their walking sticks and sandals, to wander over dunes to bring heavenly Jerusalem to all.

 

Fragment from the Dead Sea Scroll –
Fragment from the Dead Sea Scroll –
the War of the Sons of Light against the Sons of Darkness

Original first page
Qumran caves, where the Scrolls were found Qumran caves, where the Scrolls were found
Photo by Palphat LTD

 

BALLET

THE LEGEND OF THREES AND FOURS – 1971
Ballet Music in Three Acts and Twelve Scenes
Based on the legend of the same name by H. N. Bialik,
And verses from the book of proverbs XXXI. 18 – There be three things which are wonderful for me, yea, four which I know not:
the way of an eagle in the air; the way of a serpent upon a rock; the way of a ship in the midst of the sea; and the way of a man
with a woman.

Orchestra:
2+1; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6;4;3;1/ Timp.; 4 Percs.
2 Harps; Cél./ Strings

Duration:
Act I: 39'; Act II: 34'; Act III 30'; total: ~103'

Act I
King Solomon and the Kings of East and West at the palace party; in the palace garden – King's dream vision in the stars.
The King's daughter dances alone in the garden. In his room with his servants the King seeks a solution for the nightmare vision of his beloved daughter marrying a poor lad from
Sidon-

Act II
Sidon – a city of great commercial activity and much confusion; Natanya – a brave lad in search of adventure leaves Sidon and finds himself on a boat in the midst of the sea; The vessel crashes on a cliff; The lad is saved by the eagle who puts him on the deserted island in the middle of nowhere; There he sees a large tower tightly closed under lock and key, where King Solomon concealed his daughter to avoid Heaven's decree; The serpent leads him to the top of the tower where the lad and the King's daughter find themselves falling in love and involved with each other-

Act III
King Solomon and his entourage reach the island; Stunned, he sees the young couple holding hands; he accepts the situation and understands that it was God's will to bring them together; after a short interlude, they all participate in the great celebration in the city of Jerusalem.

 

SYMPHONIES

1) Symphonie de Psaums – Symphony no. 1 – 1974
    In four movements
    In Hebrew with English Transliteration
    For Soprano, Baritone, SATB Choir, Children's Choir and Orchestra
    ACUM Prize, 1974
    1st movement: Psalms LX 1.3-7; LIII 2-7
    2nd movement: Psalms XV
    3rd movement: Psalms CL; LXVII 2, 5-6, 8
    4th movement: Psalms CX 3, 1 LXXXV 11-12

   Orchestra:
   1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6; 4; 3; 1/ Timp.; 4 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél./ Strings

   Duration:
    52'

2) Symphony no. 2 – 1975
    In four movements

    Orchestra:        
    1+2;2+1;2+1;2+1/6;4;3;1/Timp.; 4 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél./ Strings
   
    Duration:
    50'

3) 'Hebrew Requiem' – Symphony no. 3 – 1977
     In four movements

     For Mezzo Soprano, SATB Choir and Orchestra
     1st Prize in International Competition- 'Holocaust and Rebirth' – 1978
     Poems in Hebrew and English Transliteration by Yitzhak Averbuch Orpaz
    
     Orchestra:
     1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6; 4; 3; 1/ Timp.; 4 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél./ Strings

     Duration:
     51'

     World Premiere:
     Tel – Aviv, April 5th, 1990

     Edna Prochnik – MS, The Opera Choir, the Jerusalem Choir, the Chamber Choir of Rishon LeZion
     The Israel Symphony Orchestra Rishon LeZion
     Ami Maayani, Conductor

The original idea was to create a Requiem in the traditional Western European form and style. The Hebrew poems are interwoven with the Latin text of the Requiem Mass. This structure was later changed to a symphonic form. The work is now a mixture of the Romantic Symphonic Tradition with the Mediterranean esprit.

Music review
Maayani's Hebrew Requiem is a masterpiece- monumental, profound and deeply moving. It has a wonderful balance between the instrumental and vocal parts and Yitzhak Orpaz's beautiful poetry shapes the work's spiritual world…
The first movement "To the Memory of My Father and Mother" erupts turbulently and then settles down to a dirge – like slow section which is declamatory in style. Edna Prochnik's voice rose from depth to dramatic heights with complete stability. The second movement, "Farwell: Dead, Dead is the Prophet" is no less absorbing. The choir now moves into focus, giving cries from all directions which remain unanswered. There are dialogues which are cut off. Distress and pain are everywhere.
The third movement, the scherzo- 'Ode' is wild. In classic A – B – A form its main A section 'Halleluya' uses a basic motif of simple diatonic, three – tone sequence of two major seconds which assume overpowering strength. When the motif returns after the lyrical B section the effect is breathtaking.
The fourth movement is a wild dithyrambic hymn in honour of Jerusalem.
Maayani has always had a marvelous talent for Orchestration and his Hebrew requiem opens up ever new horizons in his music. The essence of the Middle East is clearly there but the work also encourages a more universal language.

Benjamin Bar – Am
'The Jerusalem Post', April 11th, 1990

Maayani conducts Maayani World Premiere of Hebrew Requiem
Maayani conducts Maayani World Premiere of Hebrew Requiem
Photo by Yaakov Aviram

 

4) Sinfonietta on Popular Hebrew Themes – Symphony no. 4 – 1982
    In four movements
    Dedicated to conductor Mendi Rodan

    Orchestra:
    Original version: 2; 2; 2; 2/ 2; 2; 0; 0/ Tom – Toms, 1 perc./ Strings
    Philharmonic version: 2; 2; 2; 2/ 4; 2; 0; 0/ Timp., 2 percs., Harp/ Strings
   
    Duration:
    27'30"

    World Premiere
    Tel – Aviv, January 25th, 1983
    The Israel Sinfonietta
    Mendi Rodan, Conductor
   
    Recording:
    M11 – CD – 9 ISRAEL

Not many works have been written in which an attempt is made to combine Eastern and Western cultures, and featuring Jewish musical tradition - the traditional music as it was sung and played by the different communities, and as crystallized in the Western musical traditions of Central Europe. Israeli music has tried to present a kind of cultural encounter in the fifties and sixties of the 20th century combining original Jewish musical elements with musical forms borrowed from the classical tradition. The Sinfonietta is written in the traditional classical style of the Symphony, with four movements, each based on folkloric material from different Jewish communities.

1st movement: Adagio, Allegro – based on three Yemenite Melodies
2nd movement: Variations on Sephardic Themes
3rd movement: Scherzo – based on 'Klezmerim Waltz'
4th movement: Finale – based on traditional melody of Persian Jewry

SYMPHONIC WORKS

1) 'Qumran' – Symphonic Metaphor – 1970
    Orchestral excerpts from the Opera – Oratorio – 'The War of the Sons of Light against the Sons of Darkness'
    Commissioned by Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic Orchesetra for its European tour – 1974

    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6; 4; 3; 1/ Timp., 4 percs., Harp, Cél./ Strings
   
    Duration:
    16'33"
   
    World Premiere:
    Jerusalem, the Israel Festival, July 18th, 1971
   
    European Premiere:
    Berlin Festival, September 14th, 1971
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
    Zubin Mehta, Conductor

    'Qumran' was the first Israeli composition performed in Germany post World War II
   
    Recording:
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra/ Eliahu Inbal, conductor
    CD Fons 36-2008 ISRAEL

The Symphonic Metaphor – Qumran is based on the findings of the lost Scrolls of Essene sect in the Qumran Caves, on the Northwestern shores of the Dead Sea. The Essenes were an apocalyptic sect that existed in the early days of Christianity. A highly austere sect, they believed in the essence of Judaism, but the core of their faith was belief in the Day of Judgment, when the Sons of Light shall vanquish the Sons of Darkness.
In the Judean Desert a pilgrim is facing the Qumran Caves. He hears the prayers and chants of the Essenes. The middle section portrays the apocalyptic battle in sound rising and falling as described in the Scroll of the war. The vision of the final Judgment spreads when the battle is over. The slow opening theme emerges but fades out into the eternal stillness of the desert.   

Music Review
…Er beginnt das erste beiden Berliner Programme mit einer Novität, Der Komponist Ami Maayani gehört demselben Jahrgang 1936 an wie er selbst. Er hat in Jerusalem bei Paul Ben – Haim, dem als Paul Frankenburger 1897 in München gebornen, seit 1933 in Israel lebenden Meister, studiert, wurde als Architect ausgebildet und hat sich in Amerika mit elekronischen Schallproduktionen vertraut gemacht. Seine "Symphonische Metaphor", ein Zehnminutenstück, trägt den Namen "Qumran" nach den Höhlen am Toten Meer, wo auf Pergamentrollen Hymnen und Gebete der gleichnamigen Sekte, einer Art Vorläufer der Urchristen, gefunden wurden. Das dreiteilige Stück ist mit eminenter Klandgphantasie für ein differenziertes Orchester geschrieben. Es beginnt landsam mit tonal indifferented, weitmaschig gesetzten Akkorden von grassen atmosphärischem Reiz. Aus ihrer Statik lösen sich motivische Gestalten, von denen eine aus steigender Quart und fallendem Glanzton den lebhaften Mittelteil und die Reprise beherrscht. Taktwechsel und asymmetrische Rhythmen Kennzeichnen den Still, der in Bläsermelismen orientalischen Charakter, doch auch viel eigene Handschrift zeigt. Grundtönen oft zustrebend, eher modal als tonal, ist die Sprache unverkennbar modern, ohne einer der gäugigen Avantgarden anzugehören. Der komponist konnte für den starken Erfolg danken.

H. H. Stuckenschmidt
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, September 14, 1971
 
2) Overture Solennelle – 'Jubilee 82' – 1982
    Commissioned by the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra for the 25th anniversary of the Philharmonic Auditorium (Mann), Tel – Aviv

    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6; 4; 3; 1/ Timp., 4 Percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    10'30"

    World Premiere:
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
    Zubin Mehta, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, October 16th, 1982

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2008 (of the above performers)

3) Scherzo Méditerrannéan – 1983
    Commissioned by the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra for its European tour  in 1983

    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 6; 4; 3; 1/ Timp., 4 Percs., Harp, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    11'

    World Premiere:
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    Ole Schmidt, Conductor
    Jerusalem, October 20th, 1983
    The European tour- October 23rd – November 17th, 1983
    Gari Bertini, Conductor
  
    Recording:
    CD- Fons 36 - 2008
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    Lawrence Foster, Conductor

CONCERTI

1) Concerto for Percussion and Eight Wind Instruments - 1966
    Winner of casino de Divonne, International Competition for Chamber Music,
    Paris 1967
    In three movements

    Ensemble:
    Fl., Ob., Cl., Bn., Hn., 2Trs., Trb.

    Duration:
    25'33"

    World Premiere:
    Paris, April 1967
    Jean Charles François – Percussions
    Ensemble Ars Nova
    Edgar Cosma, Conductor

    The Israeli Premiere:

    Tel – Aviv, December 19th, 1967
    Gideon Steiner – Percussions
    The Israel Philharmonic Ensenble
    Ami Maayani, Conductor

The work was choreographed by Moshe Efrati under the title 'Leading Astray' and performed by the Ballet Vlauderen – Belgium and the Efrati Dance Company – Israel

    Recording:
    CD – Fons 36 – 2002 – ISRAEL

    The 1993 version – Concerto for Percussion and Two Pianos
    Duration:
    25'15"

    Recording:
    CD – 01 – 2096  02 – 2096 Fons/ IMP ISRAEL
    LP· SI· 31147, ISRAEL

Maayani conducts Maayani (Concerto for Percussion and Eight Wind Instruments – 1966)
Maayani conducts Maayani (Concerto for Percussion and Eight Wind Instruments – 1966)

Photo by Ran Erd
The Ballet Vlanderen / Belgium The Ballet  Vlanderen / Belgium
Photo by Yoram Rubin

 

2) Concerto for Violin and Orchestra – 1967
    In three movements
    Commissioned by the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
   
    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 1+2+1; 2+1/ 2; 2; 1; 1/ Timp., 3 percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    26'10"

    World Premiere:
    Yuval Waldman, Violin
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
    Uri Segal, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, June 8th, 1976

   Recording:
   CD – Fons 36 – 2004
   Lydia Mordkovitch, Violin
   The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
   Mendi Rodan, Conductor

3) Concerto for Violincello and Orchestra – 1967
    In three movements
    Dedicated to Joachim Stutschewsky

    Orchestra:
    1+2+1; 2+1; 1+2+1; 2+1/ 2; 2; 1; 1/ Timp., 3 percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    28'15"

    World Premiere:
    Uzi Wiesel, Violincello
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    Mendi Rodan, Conductor
    Jerusalem, September 1977

    Recording:
    LP· SI· 31147, ISRAEL

Music review
…interesting and colorful music, distinctive in character and particular to its composer, while the genre is Western, melodic treatment and rhythmic patterns of the music of the Near East. Primarily a melodic piece, the highly inflected line occasionally resembles Cantillation, at other times is melismatic as in the second movement. The last movement is rhythmic. A clear and open texture allows the soloist to express the embellished line freely. Like a true concerto there is a good balance of activity between solo passages and orchestral passages.

Peter Farrell
University of California, San Diego
'Notes' – Journal of the Music Library Association, December 1982

4) Concerto for Two Pianos and Orchestra – 1969
     In three movements

     Orchestra:
     1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 3; 3; 1/ Timp., 3 Percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

     Duration:
     ~30'

    World Premiere:
    Tami Kanazawa & Yuval Admoni - pianos
    The Israeli Symphony Orchestra Rishon Le-Zion
    Xu Yi An, Conductor
    September 21st, 2009, The Israeli Music Celebration

5) Sinfonia Concertante for Woodwind Quintet and Orchestra – 1972
    In three movements

    Orchestra:
    0; 0; 0; 0/ 0; 4; 4; 1/ Timp., 4 Percs., 2 Harps, Cél., Piano, Mandolines/
    Strings / String Orchestras - tuned a quarter tone higher

    Duration:
    ~32'

6) Concerto for Viola and Orchestra – 1974
     In three movements
     Dedicated to Daniel Binyamini

    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 4; 3; 1/ Timp., 3 Percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    27'48"

    World Premiere:
    Daniel Binyamini, Viola
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    David Shallon, Conductor
    Jerusalem, November 13th, 1986

    Recording:
    CD – Fons 36 – 2007, ISRAEL

7) Concerto for Guitar and Orchestra – 1976
    In three movements
    Commissioned and dedicated to Sharon Isbin

    Orchestra:
    1+1; 1+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 2; 2; 1; 1/ Timp., 4 Percs., 2 Harps, Cél./ Strings

    Duration:
    27'10"

    World Premiere:
    Sharon Isbin, Guitar
    The Minnesota Orchestra, Minneapolis
    Henry Charles Smith, Conductor
    Mineappolis, August 11th, 1978
   
    Israeli Premiere:
    Sharon Isbin, Guitar
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    Kazuhiro Koizumi, Conductor
    Jerusalem, November 27th, 1979

    Recording:
    CD – Fons 36 – 2007

Music Review
…This aesthetically magnificent and majestic masterpiece was presented in three movements. The first movement marked 'Modéré' began with atonal, ethereal, filmy, gauzelike shades and tints plus interludes of meditative solo guitar. A relaxed tension inspired new sounds, dimensions, dissonance and resolutions. Dialogue with the celesta created a sense of profound drama. The second movement, Andante, 'Pas plus vite que', was affirmatively masculine, resolutely tender. Silky strings and an emphatic harp created Oriental atmosphere reminiscent of a Japanese print… 'Vite et trés gai' marked the last movement. Novel, unique and highly complex rhythms led to firm resolution, romantic hope and warmth. Interweaving melodies and themes became vertical, horizontal and diagonal gems of variation and beat. The final draped tones and lush dissonances drifted into space toward Nirvana and the celestial… concluding a work of great artistic merit.

Earl A. Schreiber
'Winona Daily News', April 12th, 1978
 
8) Concerto for Piano and Orchestra – 'Souvenirs de Chine' – 2002
     In four movements
     Dedicated to Ms. Li Jin

     Orchestra:
     1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 4; 3; 1/ Timp., 4 Percs., Harp, Cél./ Strings

     Duration:
     44'50"

     World Premiere:
     Albert Mamriev, Piano
     The Beijing Symphony Orchestra
     Tan Lihua, Conductor
     Beijing, The Forbidden City Concert Hall, China
     May 23rd, 2006

Music Review
…the entire structural layout of Maestro Maayani's piano concerto was profoundly influenced by the adoption of the Chinese tune, and its mixture with elements of Jewish music results in a highly colorful and richly textured development… the two main themes of the concerto are a Chinese folk tune and a Jewish melody… the first movement- in pentatonic scales- develops the Chinese tune, a folk song from He Bei Province, in a typical Mediterranean ornamental style… it seems as if a live dialogue between those two ancient nations, the Chinese and the Jewish, is taking place.
The third movement, the motive from a Jewish holy hymn permeates the entire Adagio movement in an intermezzo style, like a Jewish – Chinese watercolor painting: mellifluous and limpid.  
Although Ami Maayani follows traditional guidelines in this composition, the way he weeds out the old form in order to integrate the new into his work is a model that our Chinese composers can make use of. Maayani's superb skills in traditional methods of composition creatively join together the significant part of characteristic Jewish music (ornaments, compound beat, compound harmony, etc.) in the masterwork with Chinese pentatonic scales. He succeeds in creating magnificent Oriental scenery in a Mediterranean style.
It goes without saying that the success of the work's performance cannot be separated from the achievement of Israeli pianist Albert Mamriev. The concerto is a highly complex and difficult piece to perform, for the orchestra as well as the soloist. Taking also into account the limited time available for rehearsals (not more than twenty hours), the wonderful performance was proof of the Beijing Symphony Orchestra's high professional and musical level under the superb conducting of Maestro Tan Lihua.

Zi Mo, Music critic
'Music Weekly' Journal, June 9th, 2006

World Premiere of Piano Concerto, Photo by Li Jin
World Premiere of Piano Concerto, Photo by Li Jin

 

VOICE AND ORCHESTRA

1) Régalim – Les Fêtes de Pélérinage (Pilgrimage Feasts)
    For High Voice (S. or T.) and Large Orchestra – 1966
    In five movements
    Text: Psalms CXXII, Isaiah LV, 12 in Hebrew
    Psalms CXXII - Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem, also available for Voice and Piano

    Orchestra:
    2+2+1; 3+1; 1+2+2; Sax. A; Sax. T; 3+1/ 6; 4; 4; 1/ Timp., 8 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél/        Strings

    Duration:
    28'23"

    World Premiere:
    Raquel Adonaylo, Soprano
    The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
    Zubin Mehta, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, October 13th, 1969
 
    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2008

Music Review
The music of 'Régalim' contains all of Maayani's characteristic features- oriental melodic pattern- built out of small intervals, heterophony, obstinate melodic and rhythmical repetitions, impressionistic coloring, etc.
The composer gives us an almost visual description of the holy pilgrimage to the Temple: the festive- Proclamation, the mysterious- Prayer and the almost pagan, ecstatic Dance of Spring. In these three sections Maayani carries one away by sheer orchestral force- sweeping rhythm and melodic obstinacy. But he does not penetrate the deeper meaning of this spiritual accent. His music, although effective, remains very much on the surface. All this prepares the listener for the beautiful vocal part, a lyrical yet almost emotional interpretation of Psalms CXXII (122): The last movement, 'Procession', with its alternating vocal and instrumental parts is probably the most original part… Raquel Adonaylo tackled the solo part with astonishing ease. There were no problems of entry, intonation, rhythm etc. Vocally she was often impressive… Maestro Mehta attacked the work with power and wide imaginative vision, trying to substantiate its content, to give it form, to build up its development, to reveal its outmost strength. The result was a rendition surprisingly well received by the audience.

Benjamin Bar – Am
'The Jerusalem Post', October 19th, 1969

Maestro Mehta and composer Maayani during rehearsal of 'Régalim'
Maestro Mehta and composer Maayani during rehearsal of 'Régalim'
Photo by Alan D. Cisco

 

2) Jüdische Lieder – Yiddish Songs - Song Cycle no. 1 - 1973
    Six songs for Soprano or Baritone and Orchestra
    The Israel Broadcasting Authority - IBA Prize for the 25th Anniversary of Israel
    Poems in Yiddish by Levick, Suzkover, Asia Guy and Pappernikov
    A Concert version for voice and piano is also available

   Orchestra:      
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 4; 3; 1/Timp.; 4 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél./ Strings
       
    Duration:
    22'33"

    World Premiere
    Willi Haparnass, Baritone
     The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
     Mendi Rodan, Conductor
     Jerusalem, August 8th, 1973

     Recording:
     CD Fons 36-2016, Israel

3) Jüdische Lieder – Yiddish Songs - Song Cycle no. 2 - 1974
    Five songs for Mezzo soprano and Orchestra
    Poems in Yiddish by Asia Guy
    A concert version for Mezzo soprano and piano is also available

    Orchestra:
    1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 4; 3; 1/ Timp.; 4 Percs.; 2 Harps; Cél./ Strings
   
    Durtion:
    25'09"

    World Premiere:
     Mira Zakai, Alto
     The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
     Ami Maayani, Conductor
     Jerusalem, June 10th, 1992

     Recording:  
     CD FONS 36-2016

     European Premiere
     Edna Prochnik, Mezzo soprano
     The Odessa Philharmonic Orchestra
     Ami Maayani, Conductor
     The Second International Festival of Jewish Music in Odessa, October 17th, 1993

     Recording:
     CD Fons 36 – 2002

4)  'Mizmorim' – Songs of Thanksgiving and Praise - 1965
      For Soprano or Tenor and Chamber Orchestra
      In two movements
      Commissioned by the Composers' Showcase, New York, USA
      Text: Psalms CXXXI, CXXI in Hebrew
     Also available for voice and piano

    Orchestra:
    1; 1; 1+1; 0/ 0; 0; 0; 0/ Tom – Toms, 2 Percs.; Harp/ Strings

    Duration:
    15'10"

    World Premiere:
    Janice Harsanyi, Soprano
    The American Symphony Orchestra
    Julius Rudel, Conductor
    Philharmonic Hall, New York, March 10th, 1965

Music Review
Israeli Music – Fascinating.
Mr. Ben – Haim, at 68, was the oldest composer represented. The other piece of real excellence was by Ami Maayani, and was also a work for Voice and Orchestra. 'Mizmorim', a setting of two psalms is a glowing, shimmering piece with an orchestral style somewhat influenced by Ravel and again, a sinuous folk derived vocal line. Some delicate percussive effects add much to its effect. And it was stunningly sung by the young soprano Janice Harsanyi with Julius Rudel on the podium.

Alan Rich
'New York Herald Tribune', March 11th, 1965

…Julius Rudel conducted the small orchestra and Janice Harsanyi was the soprano in Ami Maayani's 'Mizmorim', a dissonant but exotic – sounding work with plenty of advanced effects.

Herald C. Schonberg
'The New York Times', March 11th, 1965

5)  Adam Ve Hava (Adam & Eve) Catata Aramaica - 2009
      For Mixed Choir, Soprano, Tenor and Baitone soloists, Brass Ensemble and Harp

    Orchestra:
    0.0.0.0 - 3.3.3.1 - perc (4) - harp

    Duration:
    ~50"

A CAPELLA CHOIR

1) Five Sephardic Songs for mixed Choir a Capella on Ladino Lyrics - 2001

    First performance:
    Vilnius Municipal Choir `Jauna Muzika`
    Vaclovas Augustinas, Conductor
    Vilnius, LithuaniaJune 17th, 2004

    Duration:
    12'32"

    Recorded live:
    CD 36-2016

CHAMBER ORCHESTRA

1) Divertimento Concertante - 1959
    In five movements

    Orchestra:
    1; 1; 2; 1/ 2; 1; 0; 0/ 4 Tom – Toms/ Strings

    Duration:
    15'30"

    World Premiere:
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    George Singer, Conductor
    Jerusalem, May 1959

2) Sinfonietta no. 1 – 1980
    In two movements
    Alternate version of Songs of King Solomon – music for String Orchestra – 1962

    Orchestra:
    1; 2; 2; 1/ 2; 1; 0; 0/ Timp., 2 Percs.; Harp/ Strings

    Duration:
    13'30"

   World Premiere:
   String Orchestra version - The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
   Mendi Rodan, Conductor
   Jerusalem, December 1964

CHAMBER MUSIC

1) Concerto pour Octuor – Concerto Méditerrannéen - 1963
     In three movements

    Ensemble:
    Fl., Ob. d'Amore; B. Cl.; Tr.; Viola, D.B.; Harp; Harpsichord

    Duration:
    22'40"

    World Premiere
    'Kaprizma' Ensemble
    Israel Sharon, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, November 13th, 2001

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2010

2) Poème – 1965
    For Flute and String Trio
    In four movements
    Commissioned by the Beth El Synagogue

    Duration:
    12'10"

    World Premiere:
    Larchmont, NY, May 1965

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2010
 

3) Three Preludes for Percussion Quartet – or Percussion Ensemble and Piano – 1968

    Duration:
    20'25"

    World Premiere:
    Israeli Philharmonic Percussion Ensemble
    Mendi Rodan, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, Israel Festival, July 1974

    Recording:
    CD 02 2096 Fons – IMP ISRAEL
    The Samuel Rubin Academy of Music, Israel
    Alon Bor, Conductor

4) Quintette pour Instruments à Cuivre – 1977
     2 Trompettes, Cor, Trombone, Tuba
     Commissioned by the Tel – Aviv Foundation for Literature and Art
     In five movements

    Duration:
    23'55"

   World Premiere:
   The Israel Philharmonic Brass Quintet
   Tel – Aviv, July 10th, 1981

   Recording:
   CD Fons 36 – 2010 ISRAEL

5) Sonatine en Trio – 1985
    Clarinette ou Violon, Violoncelle et Piano
    Commissioned by the Tel – Aviv Foundation for Literature and Art
    In three movements

    Duration:
    24'

    World Premiere:
    The Cameratta Trio
    Tel – Aviv, July 3rd, 1987

    Recordings:
    CD Fons 36 – 2010 (Cl., Vlc., Piano)
    CD Fons 01 – 2096 (Vln., Vlc., Piano)

6) String Quartet – 1998
    In three movements

    Duration:
    30'17"

    World Premiere:
    'Musica Viva' String Quartet
    Moscow, July 8th, 2001

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2013, ISRAEL

Clair de Lune Méditerranéen
Clair de Lune Méditerranéen
Painting by Ami Maayani, 2002
Cover of String Trio and String Quartet CD

7) String Trio – 1999
    In four movements

    Duration:
    26'30"

    World Premiere:
    'Musica Viva' String Trio
    Moscow, January 9th, 2002

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2013 ISRAEL

VIOLIN AND VIOLA

8) Arabesque no. 7 for Violin and Viola - 2010

    Duration:
    ~10`

 

SOLO INSTRUMENTS

1) Avant propos – Deux Préludes pour Piano - 1958

    Duration:
    I – 2'38"   II – 4'55"

   Recording:
   CD 02 2096 Fons - IMP ISRAEL

2) Deux Impromptus pour Piano – 1974; 1976
    Obligatory Israeli Composition for the Arthur Rubinstein Piano Competition
    in Israel – 1986 (2ème Impromptu)

    Duration:
    I – 10'09"   II – 6'26"

    World Premiere:
    Sara Fuxon Heyman, Piano
    Tel – Aviv, April, 1978

    Recording:
    CD 02 2096 Fons - IMP ISRAEL

3) Twelve Fantasies for Piano in Prelude and Fugue Form
    Based on Medieval Modes and Ethnic Scales
    Homage to Bach (250th Anniversary of his death) and Shostakovich
    (50th Anniversary of the composition of his Preludes and Fugues)

    Duration:
    I – 4'05"; II – 11'36"; III – 8'25"; IV – 5'16"; V – 6'48"; VI – 6'05"; VII – 7'35";
   VIII – 4'24"; IX – 4'34"; X – 8'30"; XI – 9'57"; XII – 9'57"

    Total: 77'06"
  
    World Premiere:
    Senior piano professors of the Israeli Academy of Music, Tel – Aviv University
    Tel – Aviv, January 20th, 2001

   Recording:
   CD Fons 36 – 2012 – 2 ISRAEL

4) Sonate pour Violon Seul – 1978
    Dedicated to Violinist Lydia Mordkovitch
    Commissioned by the Tel – Aviv Foundation for Literature and Art
    In four movements

   Duration:
   23'30"

   World Premiere:
   Lydia Mordkovitch, Violin
   Jerusalem Music Center, May 1978

   Recordings:
   CD Fons 36 – 2004 ISRAEL (Lydia Mordkovitch)
   CD 01 2096 Fons – IMP ISRAEL (Bing Jing Yu)

5) Sonate pour Violoncelle Seul – 1979
    Commissioned by the Tel – Aviv Foundation for Literature and Art
    In four movements

   Duration:
   16'57"

   World Premiere:
   Alexander Kagonowsky, Violoncello
   Tel – Aviv, May 1982

   Recording:
   CD 01 2096 Fons – IMP ISRAEL
   Natalia Khoma

6) Sonatine pour Guitare – 1976
    Dedicated to Guitarist Joseph Urshalmi
    Commissioned by the Tel – Aviv Foundation for Literature and Art
    In four movements

    Duration:
    11'55"

    World Premiere:
    Naftali Lahav
    Tel – Aviv, June 1990

    Recording:
    CD 01 2096 Fons – IMP ISRAEL
    Tali Roth

7) Arabesque no. 5 for Organ – 1999
     Dedicated to Alexander Gorin

     Duration:
     13'45"

     World Premiere:
     Sabin Levi, Kanzas City, USA
     November 21st, 1999

     Recording:
     CD Fons 36 – 2011 ISRAEL

8) Ten Waltzes for Piano - 2009
     Based on Church modes and Ethnic scales

     Duration:
     40"

9) Arabesque no. 6 for Violin Solo
     Dedicated to my niece Sivann

     Duration:
     ~8"

 


Maayani enjoying the Organ in the living room of his home in Tel – Aviv, Maayani enjoying the Organ in the living room of his home in Tel – Aviv,
Architecturally designed by him
Gideon Shamir - Organ builder
Photo by Ran Erde

MUSIC FOR HARP

SOLO

1) Toccata – 1961; Lucile Lawrence version - 1969
    Obligatory Composition for the 2nd International Harp Contest in Israel – 1962
    Israel Ministry of Tourism Prize 1962

    Duration:
    6'16"

    World Premiere:
    Susanna Mildonian, Harp, 1962

    Recording:
    CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP ISRAEL
    Naoko Yoshino

2) 'Maquamat' – Arabesque no. 1 – 1961 revised 1984

    Duration:
    6'52"

    World Premiere:
    Susanna Mildonian, Harp, 1962

    Recording:
    CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP ISRAEL (Naoko Yoshino)
    CD Fons 36 – 2011 (Grace Wong)

3) Passacaglia dans le Style Oriental – 1975
    Dedicated to Lucile Lawrence
    Obligatory Composition for the 9th International Harp Contest in Israel – 1985

    Duration:
    9'12"

    World Premiere:
   Grace Wong, New York, May 1976

   Israeli Premiere:
   Ruth Maayani, March 1980

   Recording:
   CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP ISRAEL
   Naoko Yoshino

4) Sonate no. 1 – 1979
    Dedicated to Grace Wong
    In four movements

   Duration:
   13'51"

   World Premiere:
   Grace Wong, New York, August 1981

   Recordings:

   LP· SI· 31165 ISRAEL
   CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP
ISRAEL
   Naoko Yoshino
   CD CBS/ SONY 30DC 5311
   Naoko Yoshino

5) Sonate no. 2 – 1990
    Dedicated to Naoko Yoshino
    In three movements

    Duration:
    19'06"

    World Premiere:
    Naoko Yoshino, Tokyo, March 1991

    Recording:
    CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP ISRAEL
    Naoko Yoshino

6) Five Pieces for the Young Harpist – 1974
    Pedagogical work
    Dedicated to Ruth Maayani
    In five movements
 
    Duration:
    10'35"

    World Premiere:
    Ruth Maayani, Tel – Aviv, 1978

    Recording:
    CD 02 – 9420 Fons - IMP ISRAEL
    Naoko Yoshino

DUO

FLUTE AND HARP

1) Arabesque no. 2 - 1973
   
    Duration:
    9'30"

    World Premiere:
    Karen Kolin, Harp; Gretchen Pusch, Flute
    New York, May 24th, 1976

   Recording:
   CD Fons 36 – 2011 ISRAEL
   Ruth Maayani, Harp; Noam Buchman, Flute

VIOLIN AND HARP

2) Partita en Mode Phrygien - 2008
    Dedicated to my sister Ruth and her daughter Sivann
    In six movements

   Duration:
   ~30'

    World Premiere:
    Sivann Maayani Zelikoff, Violin; Ruth Maayani, harp
    Henry Crown Hall, Jerusalem
    December 15th, 2008

    Recording:
    CD Fons - 36 - 2017
    Sivann Maayani Zelikoff, violin
    Ruth Maayani, harp

VOICE AND HARP

3) Thirty Six Hebrew Poems from Spain – Song Cycle for Voice and Harp –  1997 – 1998

    Book I –  Twelve Poems in Hebrew by Moses Ibn – Ezra, Judah Ha – Levi,
                    Samuel Ha – Nagid, Solomon Ibn – Gabirol – 1997

    Book II -  Ten Poems Translated from Hebrew to English by Moses Ibn – Ezra; Unknows – 1997; Israel Abrahams, Translator
   
    Book III – Six Poems Translated from Hebrew to English by Moses Ibn – Ezra – 1999; Israel Abrahams, Translator

    Book IV – Eight Poems Translated from Hebrew to French by Samuel Ha – Nagid, Moïse Ben Jacob Ben – Ezra; Célestin de     Mouilleron, Translator

    Duration:
    Book I – 22'30"; Book II – 19'30"; Book III – 10'30"; Book IV – 22'06"
    Total – 74'36"

    World Premiere:
    Ruth Maayani, Harp
    Anna Skibinsky – Soprano; Anat Eini – Alto; Guy Bonné – Bass – Baritone
    'Upper Galilee Music Days' Festival
    Kibbutz Kfar Blum, July 25th, 1998 (Books I & II)

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2009 ISRAEL
    Ruth Maayani, Harp
    Anna Skibinsky, Maria Joffe, Silvie Bendova – Sopranos;
    Ira Barsky – Mezzo Soprano; Anat Eini – Alto;
    David Sebba – Baritone; Guy Bonné – Bass Baritone

TRIO

1) Flute, Alto (ou Violon), Harp (Improvisation Variée) – 1966 revised - 1975
    Commissioned by the Kathleen Alister Harp Trio, Johannesburg, South Africa, originally scored for Flute, Violin and Harp

    In two movements

    Duration:
    17'10"

    World Premiere:
    Kathleen Alister Trio – Kathleen Alister, Harp; Lucien Grujon, Flute;
    Walter Mony, Violin, Johannesburg, May 11th, 1967
   
    Recording:
    LP WGS-8196 Westminster gold series
    Kathleen Alister, Harp; Lucien Grujon, Flute; Walter Mony, Violin.
    CD Fons 36 – 2003 ISRAEL

    Ruth Maayani, Harp; Noam Buchmann, Flute; Gad Lewertoff, Viola

2) Beethoven – Maayani
    Serenade in D op. 25 for Flute, Violin & Viola arranged for Flute, Viola and Harp – 1980
    In seven movements

    Duration:
    26'10"

    World Premiere:
    The Lyra Trio – Ruth Maayani, Harp; Uri Shoam, Flute; David Chen, Viola
    Tel – Aviv, April 1983

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2001 ISRAEL
    Ruth Maayani, Harp; Amir Sela, Flute; Richard L. Simon, Viola

3) Arabesque no. 8 for Violin, Viola and Harp

    Duration:
    ~12`

QUARTET

1) Harp and String Trio (Violin, Viola, Violoncello) - 1975
    Dedicated to Don Henry

    In three movements

    Duration:
    15'30"

   World Premiere:
   Sara Cutler, Harp; The Jewish and Art School Trio
   New York, May 24th, 1976
   Israeli Premiere:
   Sara Cutler, Jerusalem Trio
   Jerusalem, November 11th, 1981

   Recording:
   CD Fons 36 – 2003 ISRAEL
   Ruth Maayani, Harp; The Tel Aviv Academy of Music String Trio

2) Harp Quartet
    Arabesque no. 3 – 1973

    Commissioned by the New York Harp Quartet
 
    Duration:
    9'

    World Premiere:
    Israel Harp Ensemble
    Jerusalem, 2nd World Harp Congress, July 1985
    American Premiere:
    The Pacific Harp Ensemble, April 1988

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2006; Fons 36 – 2011 ISRAEL
    The Pacific Harp Ensemble

SEXTET

1) Deux Madrigaux
    Harp and Woodwind Quintet (Fl., Ob., Cl., Bn., Hn) – 1969

    Commissioned by the Edna Phillips Foundation, Philadelphia, USA
    In two movements

    Duration:
    16'18"

    World Premiere:
    Chantal Mathieu, Harp; The Paris Woodwind quintet
    Paris, June 1974
    American Premiere:
    Susan Joles, Harp; The Boehm Quintet
    New York, May 24th, 1976
   
    Israeli Premiere:
    Ruth Maayani, Harp; the York Winds – Canada
    Tel – Aviv, December 12th, 1981
 
    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2003
    Ruth Maayani, Harp; The Lewkowitch Woodwind Quintet

HARP AND ORCHESTRA

1) Concerto for Harp and Symphony Orchestra no. 1 – 1960
    'Engel' Prize of the Tel –
Aviv Municipality – 1963
    Obligatory Composition in the 3rd International Harp Contest in Israel – 1965
    Obligatory Composition in the 15th International Harp Contest in Israel – 2003
    Obligatory Composition in the International Competition in USA, Harford, Conn. – 1969
    In three movements
 
    Orchestra:
    1+1+1; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 3; 3; 0; 0/ Timp., 4 Percs., Cél./ Strings
   
    Duration:
    28'15"

    World Premiere:
    International Harp Week
    Susanna Mildonian, Harp
    Utrechts Stedelijk Orkest
    Paul Huppers, Conductor
    Laren, Holland, July 13th, 1963

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2006
    Susanna Mildonian, Harp
    The Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra
    Carl St. Clair, Conductor

Music Review
I think the Concerto is one of the best modern works written for the harp. The harp part is difficult but quite possible and will bring the students and harp players to a high level. I hope it will be played often and become one of the works performed in harp repertoire.

Maria Korchinska, England
July 18th, 1963

Ce doit être une grande joie pour chaque harpist – soliste de jouer le concerto de Ami Maayani. Le compositeur connait très bien l'instrument et c'est une exception que la harpe est vraiment solo et pas obligatoire.

Phia Berghout, Holland
18th Juillet 1963

Je pense que ce concerto est remmarquable et certainment une oeuvre très précieux pour le repertoire contemporain de la harpe. La partie de harpe est traitée très habiliment et l'orchestre est merveilleux de couleur. J'ai une énorme plaisir en écoutant la première audition à Laren (Holland) et je félicite l'auteur et l'interpaite Susanna Mildonian de tout coeur.

Marcel Grandjany, USA
18th Juillet, 1963, Holland

2) Concerto Symphonique pour Harpe et Orchestre
    Concerto no. 2 – 1966

     Dedicated to Susanna Mildonian
     In three movements

     Orchestra:
     1+2; 2+1; 2+1; 2+1/ 4; 3; 3; 1/ Timp., 3 Percs., Harp/ Strings

     Duration:
     29'15"

     World Premiere:
     Florence Sitruk, Harp
     The Heidelberg Philharmonic Orchestra
     Romely Pfund, Conductor
     Heidelberg, February 6th, 2002
 
     Recording:
     CD Fons 36 – 2014 ISRAEL

Music Review, press excerpts
…This music is like a rushing, mighty river at times, and at others like a broadly flowing mello stream, which is nurtured by many springs but is characterized by an unambiguous intellectual landscape. The demanding solo part acts as an Ariadne thread through the whole structure.

'Rhein – Neckar – Zeitung', Heidelberg, Matthias Roth
February 8th, 2002

…The World Premiere of the dramatic three movements of the 'Concerto Symphonique pour Harpe', which will, undoubtedly, enrich the sparse concert literature for harp, was a triumphant success… a work like a painting by Gauguin… Calling forth an overwhelming association of topical flora and fauna…

'Mannheimer Morgen', Waltraud Brunst
February 9th, 2002

3) Concertino for Harp and String Orchestra – 1980
     Commissioned by Maestro Nicanor Zabaleta
     And dedicated to the great master of the harp – Nicanor Zabaleta
     In three movements

     String Orchestra:
     Two 1st Violin; two 2nd Violins; two Violas; two Violoncelli; DB
     Also String Nonet

     Duration:
     23'

    World Premiere:
    Ruth Maayani, Harp
    The Israel Chamber Orchestra
    Ole Schmidt, Conductor
    Tel – Aviv, January 18th 1981

   Recording:
   Ruth Maayani, Harp
   The Tel – Aviv String Nonet
   Nayden Todorov, Conductor

Music Review
…I like this brilliant, effective and beautiful work, and I consider it an important addition to the harp repertoire; the Concertino fulfilled my earlier expectations on commissioning it…

Nicanor Zabaleta
Vila Izar, Spain, July 1981

4) Arabesque no. 4 for Flute, Harp and String Orchestra – 1983
   
    Duration:
    12'

    World Premiere:
    Grace Wong, Harp
    The Chamber Ensemble of the Rochester Symphony
    Rochester, NY, May 1984

    Recording:
    CD Fons 36 – 2011
    Ruth Maayani, Harp; Noam Buchmann, Flute
    The Chamber Ensemble of the Israel Academy of Music, Tel – Aviv University
    Ami Maayani, Conductor

5) L'Esprit Baroque Méditerranéen
    Trois Pièces pour Quatre Harpes et Orchestre à Cordes – 2007

    Dedicated to the memory of a wonderful friend and a noble harpist, Phia Berghout
    Commissioned by the World Harp Congress 2008
    In three movements
    Prélude, Toccate et Fugue

    Duration:
    ~30'

    World Premiere:
    Quatuor de Harpes de Paris    
    Marie Saint-Bonnet, Sabin Chefson   
    Caroline Rempp, Agnes Kammerer   
    Rotterdam Chamber Orchestra   
    Conrad Van Alphen
- Conductor   
    Amsterdam, July 20th, 2008

ELECTRO ACOUSTIC MUSIC

1) Study no. 1 - 1965

2) Study no. 2 – 1965

3) Microtonos – 1965

Available on magnetic tapes

WILD OATS

1) Variations on an original theme for piano - 1955

    First performance:
    Mordechai Simoni, June 1955, Tel Aviv, Israel

2) Divertimento for Chamber Orchestra - 1957
    In five movements

    First performance:
    Israel Broadcast Authority Orchesyra
    George Singer, Conductor

 

 

back to top