The composer, conductor and flutist Petr Kotík (1942, Prague) was educated in Prague and Vienna. While at the Prague Conservatory, he founded the ensemble Musica viva pragensis (1961-64) and, after returning from Vienna, the QUaX Ensemble (1969-69).
In 1970, shortly after his arrival in the U.S., he founded the S.E.M. Ensemble, which expanded in 1992 into The Orchestra of the S.E.M. Ensemble. Since 1997 he works with the Janáček Philharmonic Ostrava, and since 2001 he splits his time between New York and Ostrava. In the early 1960s, Kotík was active mainly as a chamber musician and soloist. In 1992, Kotík began to work with orchestra, which marked the beginning of his conducting career. After the debut of the 86-piece Orchestra of the S.E.M. Ensemble at Carnegie Hall (with David Tudor at the piano), Kotík continued to conduct major events in New York, Berlin, Prague, Ostrava, Warsaw, and Tokyo, as well as opera productions in New York and Berlin. Kotík initiated, commissioned, and co-conducted large orchestra compositions (including 3-orchestra works) by Christian Wolff, Olga Neuwirth, Phill Niblock, Alvin Lucier, Somei Satoh, Roscoe Mitchell, Martin Smolka, Bernhard Lang, and others.
The year 2001 marks the first season of the biennial Ostrava Days under the direction of Petr Kotík. In 2005, specifically for the festival, Kotík founded Ostravská banda, an international chamber ensemble for contemporary music, with which he tours as creative director.
In 2012, along with Jiří Nekvasil, the director of the NDM, Kotík founded the New Opera Days Ostrava (NODO). Among the best known compositions by Kotík are Music for 3 in Memoriam Jan Rychlík (1964), There is Singularly Nothing on a text by Gertrude Stein (1971-73), Many Many Women on a text by Gertrude Stein (1975-78),Explorations in the Geometry of Thinking on a text by R. Buckminster Fuller (1978-80), Letters to Olga on a text by Vaclav Havel (1989-91), Music in Two Movements for orchestra (1998-2002), Variations for 3 Orchestras (2003-05), and String Quartet No. 1 “Erinnerungen an Jan” (2007-09). His percussion trio In Four Parts (2009) was performed numerous times in Europe and the U.S. Kotík’s Torso (String Quartet No. 2) was premiered in December, 2011, in New York at the Paula Cooper Gallery and in an expanded version on March 1 at ISSUE Project Room by the S.E.M. Ensemble. Its Czech premier was during the Prague Spring festival 2013. Kotík’s discography as a conductor includes John Cage’s Atlas Eclipticalis and Concert for Piano and Orchestra (with pianist Joseph Kubera) on Wergo; John Cage’s 103 and Atlas Eclipticalis (with pianist David Tudor, recorded live at the Konzerthaus Berlin) on a 4-CD set by Asphodel, Ltd, San Francisco; The Turfan Fragments and For Samuel Beckett by Morton Feldman on Dog W/A Bone, 2001, New York; Music of Somei Satoh with the Janáček Philharmonic and Thomas Buckner, baritone on Mode Records (New York) and orchestra compositions by Roscoe Mitchell and Muhal Richard Abrams on Mutablemusic, New York. Other important releases include: Many Many Women by Kotík on 3-CD set on Dog W/A Bone, 2000; In Four Parts on Mutablemusic; The Entire Musical Work of Marcel Duchamp (with John Cage reading Sculpture Musicale) on Dog W/A Bone, 1999; and Treatise by Cornelius Cardew — a 2-hour live performance by the QUaX Ensemble, recorded live in Prague in 1967 on a 2-CD set by Mode Records, 2009, New York.
In the Fall of 2012 in New York, Petr Kotík initiated and organized perhaps the largest festival commemorating John Cage’s 100th birthday. The festival featured Ostrava Janáček Philharmonic and Ostravská banda. In the January of 2013, Kotík performed with the Ostravská banda in a concert for WDR 3 in Cologne, where he premiered his workNine + 1.
Production team - Season:
|HIBIKI, HIBIKI, vzhmoť!||Conductor|
|A Woman Such as Myself||Conductor|
|Song Books||Musical preparation|
|Aventures and Nouvelles Aventures||Conductor|
|A TRIBUTE TO CUNNINGHAM||Conductor|
|NEW THEATRE DANCE – PERFORMANCE – OPERA||Conductor|
|NO NO MIYA||Conductor|
Cast - Season: