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Justė Janulytė


Justė Janulytė (b. 1982) studied piano, choral conducting, music theory and composition (with Prof. Bronius Kutavičius) at the M. K. Čiurlionis School of Arts. In 2004 she was awarded a Bachelor's degree from the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre, where she studied composition with Prof. Osvaldas Balakauskas and music theory with Prof. Gražina Daunoravičienė; in 2006 she completed her studies for a Master's degree in composition at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre. In 2004-05 Justė Janulytė studied at the Milan G. Verdi Conservatory. She has also taken part in the master classes for young composers of Baltic countries in Dundaga (2002, Latvia), international workshop for composers and musicologists in Warsaw (2003), Helena Tulve's composition master class in Tallinn (2006), Luca Francesconi's "Earlab" in Stresa  (2006, Italy).


Janulytė's music was performed in Europe, USA and Canada, by Lithuanian National Symphony, Teatro La Fenice Symphony and Gothenburg Symphony Orchestras, French Flute, Lithuanian Chamber and St. Christopher Chamber orchestras, Riga Sinfonietta, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, Ensemble Bit20 (Norway), Estonian Philharmonic and Danian Radio chamber choirs, Lithuanian Flute Quartet, Chordos and Kaunas string quartets, Quasar (Montreal) and Xasax (Paris) saxophone quartets, Rūta and Zbignevas Ibelhauptas piano duo, cellists Anton Lukoszevieze (England) and Francesco Dillon (Italy), and others. Her works were included in the programs of such festivals as World New Music Days (Sweden, 2009), Venice Biennale (Italy, 2008), Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival (England, 2008, 2010), MaerzMusik (Germany, 2011), Holland Festival (the Netherlands, 2011), Warsaw Autumn (Poland, 2011), Gaida (Lithuania, 2005, 2007, 2011), Jauna Muzika (Lithuania, 2007, 2009), and many others.


Since 2006 she has been teaching the course on contemporary music language at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre. The composer has also written critics and articles on music.


Justė Janulytė first came into public view in 2004 when her graduation work white music for 15 strings was awarded as the best chamber piece at the competition organized by the Lithuanian Composers' Union. Consecutively, she has won the prize for the best orchestral work (textile, 2008), the prize for the best chamber work (Elongation of Nights, 2010), and the Grand Prix (Sandglasses, 2011) at the same competition. In 2009 she also became a winner in the young composers category at the UNESCO's International Rostrum of Composers in Paris (with aquarelle for mixed choir). Within the span of several years her experimental and highly visionary works have earned her wide internal reknown and official recognition at home, in the form of the Young Artist's Prize awarded by the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture in 2011.


Majority of her works, written for 'monochromatic' ensembles (e.g. 4 flutes or saxophones, 21 strings, etc.), represent slow metamorphoses of textural, dynamic, timbral and ornamental gestures. While balancing between the aesthetics of minimalism and sonorism, Justė Janulytė composes acoustic metaphors of optic ideas (Pendulums, 2001; Elongation of Nights, 2009; textile, 2008; aquarelle, 2007; Silence of the Falling Snow, 2006, etc) and researches the visual nature of musical phenomena in the works where sound and image are fused together (Sandglasses for video, live electronics and installation of video and lights, 2010; Breathing Music for 4 cellos, live electronics and kinetic sculptures, 2007; Eclissi for violin, viola, cello, double bass, live electronics and soundproof glass installation, 2007).


"One of the reasons why I like composing so much is that it allows embodying of the most utopian ideas, in spite of any rules of logic or, all the more, laws of physics: white reflection in the mirror facing black colour in front of its own image (white music), or objects casting shadows transforming into shadows without corresponding objects themselves (let's talk about shadows), etc. Certainly, the listener is not being bothered with this kind of information. All this stays between my music and me. As if the music were drifting somewhere, even though it is unlikely that there is a coast anywhere." (Justė Janulytė)

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