Release Date: November 11, 2014
Catalog #: NV5980
Format: Digital & Physical
21st Century
String Orchestra
String Quartet

Letters To a Young Poet

Mark Zanter composer

Ankara University Soloists String Quartet | Ellen Jewett violin I; Prof. Dr. Orhan Ahiskal violin II; Prof. Cetin Aydarviola; Prof. Sinan Dizmen violoncello
Dr. Şõlen Dikener violoncello
Duo Alves | Kristen Alves violin; Dr. Júlio Ribeiro Alves guitar
Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra | Stanislav Vavřínek conductor

On his debut Navona Records release, LETTERS TO A YOUNG POET, composer Mark Zanter presents recently commissioned chamber works for strings.

The inspiration for the title track comes from Rainer Maria Rilke’s letters to Franz Xaver Kappus, a correspondence in which his encouragement to a young poet becomes a vehicle for expressing his thoughts on the creative process and the transcendent qualities of art.

Guitarist Júlio Alves comments: “In Letters to a Young Poet, Mark Zanter reveals through a complex mosaic of sonorities the correspondence between anguished apprentice Franz Kappus and disquiet Rainer Maria Rilke, a poet still wrestling to find his own artistic identity. The intricacies of the parts, individually and together, indicate that the role of each instrument in this correspondence was purposefully left undecided, allowing both the violin and the guitar to be either ‘the apprentice’ or ‘the poet.'”

Themes are continued and developed in both Lament and dream (2013) for string orchestra, piano, and percussion, and Three Movements for Cello Quintet (2007). In these works the interplay between initial ideas, their genesis, and resonance with individual feelings and experiences are the compositional process by which the “inexpressible mysterious existence of artworks,” which Rilke oft refers to in the Letters, emerges.

Last, String Quartet (2011) is a single movement work described by cellist Şõlen Dikener as “…a monumental work with deep emotions which carry the listener into Zanter’s adventurous world.”


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Artist Information

Mark Zanter


Mark Zanter has appeared on NPR’s Live at the Landmark, WILL, IPR, WVPN’s In Touch With The Arts, is published by Les Productions d’OZ, Schott European American and MJIC, and his works have been performed nationally and internationally at festivals including, MUSIC X, June in Buffalo, Soundscape, NYCEMF, Echofluxx, SEAMUS, the Atlantic Center for the Arts, Generative Art International, Seensound, MIUC, Melbourne, and SPLICE.

Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra


The Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra is one of the foremost and oldest symphony orchestras in the Czech Republic. It is based in the historical capital of Moravia, the city of Olomouc, and has been a leader of music activities in the region for the past 70 years. Its artistic development was directly influenced by distinguished figures from the Czech and international music scene.

Stanislav Vavřínek


Stanislav Vavřínek is one of the most prominent Czech conductors and has been Chief Conductor of the Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Pardubice since 2018. Having graduated from the Conservatory in Brno where he studied flute and conducting, he continued his education at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. Subsequently, he also took master classes with Roberto Benzi in Switzerland, culminating with a concert in which he conducted the Biel Philharmonic Orchestra.