Modern music: Nunes

Among the next generation of composers, one I've found intriguing is Emmanuel Nunes from Portugal. Nunes' music is difficult to describe, but generally post-serialist in style, meaning that it uses serial complexes but in a less straight-forward manner. Some extremely complicated compositional processes are involved at times, but the result does not sound forced or contrived. It's the psychological depth which makes the music interesting.

Although there are a few other recordings around (often difficult to obtain), the major ones are the series on Naïve Montaigne:

Emmanuel Nunes 1: Machina Mundi
Gulbenkian Choir & Orchestra, Lisbon
Naïve Montaigne 782020
Emmanuel Nunes 2: Quodlibet
Ensemble Modern / Orquestra Gulbenkian Lisboa
Naïve Montaigne 782055

Both of these major works continue to grow on me over time, and I find myself thoroughly enjoying them.

I also happened to find out that Nunes won the UNESCO prize for composer in 1999, following Xenakis who won it in 1998.

Back to Modern music page.

Todd M. McComb
11 November 1999