Challenge Records Int. Logo
"Necessity is the mother of invention." - Frank Zappa

Maxim Shalygin

“Creativity is an unconscious act of insanity, in a burst of which the truth is born. No matter how beautiful or disgusting it may seem to people far from madness, its value is beyond doubt, both for the author and for those able to sense its invisible beauty.  After all, gratitude for endless trials and suffering brings joy and blissful emptiness... Being shocked by music is about pain turning into beauty and getting under your skin, taking away your breath;  about everything stopping to move. I want to be scratched inside by sound and experience the fleeting, invisible beauty.”   Maxim Shalygin was born in Ukraine on January 30th, 1985. He began studying composition seriously at the age of sixteen, with Irina Ivashenko. In 2004, he trained for one year with Boris Tishchenko at the N. Rimsky-Korsakov St. Petersburg State Conservatory in Russia. He received his first Master’s Degree in 2010 at the National Music Academy in Kiev, Ukraine. One year later, in 2011, Shalygin received his second Master’s Degree at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, The Netherlands, where he studied with Cornelis de Bondt and Diderik Wagenaar. He currently resides and works in The Netherlands.
  For over ten years, Maxim Shalygin has been occupied with the project of a lifetime: music for solo instruments. “The most concealed, intimate, and deep things can only be expressed by a single instrument,” he says. In each of his solo works, Shalygin reaches an exalted state, giving the instrument a special voice. The 9 Preludes for Piano Solo, Letters to Anna, a symphony for violin solo, Musique de Ferfor one percussionist, and Trembling Musicfor accordion solo are the results of close collaboration with unique performers such as Antony Baryshevsky, Emmy Storms, Konstantyn Napolov, and Vincent van Amsterdam, respectively. On the other hand, Shalygin explores writing for symphony and chamber orchestras. His works Passacaglia Es-moll, Triple Concerto Des-dur, and Lullabyfor strings have been performed in many concert halls.
  Another important thread throughout the composer’s work is music for ballet. His collaboration with choreographer Lonneke van Leth resulted in scores for several ballets: Suite - Homage to Alfred Schnittke, Nachtnet, and Odysseus, that were performed during the Holland Dance Festival, and have enjoyed successes in many Dutch theaters.
Maxim Shalygin is also the author of a wealth of electro-acoustic compositions. He considers some of these as a kind of musical cinema. Two Hours in Reservoir(using Joseph Brodsky’s recitation voice) and When Everything Ends, We Start to Sing Our Songs, are musical works of over 50 minutes in length, with plots that engage the listener in ever-changing streams of sound shapes.
  Shalygin’s vocal music constitutes the most characteristic and intimate part of his work, its very heart. It is not concert music in the usual sense — it is poetry recited by a voice and an instrument (the piano) combined. It is music written for its own sake, which becomes a heritage of others.
  Maxim Shalygin has participated in many international competitions. For his Letters to Annasymphony for violin solo, he obtained an honorable mention at the 2012 Gaudeamus Competition. In the same year, his music was selected for Lars von Trier’s Gesamtproject. Shalygin was a composer-in-residence at IZOLYAT-SIA, Platform for Cultural Initiatives in Donetsk, Ukraine, and the Storioni Festival in The Netherlands. His works have been performed at many music festivals worldwide, including Gaudeamus Muziekweek (The Netherlands), Musical Contrasts of the 20th Century (Russia), Musical Youth Tributne, and GOGOLFEST (Ukraine), GAIDA Festival (Lithuania), and CIME/ICEM (United States). Leading contemporary music ensembles who have performed his works include Asko|Schönberg, Amsterdam Sinfonietta, DoelenKwartet, Insomnio, Nieuw Ensemble, Slagwerk Den Haag, and Keuris Kwartet.

Featured on

Sergei Rachmaninov, Maxim Shalygin
Sonata for Cello and Piano Op. 19 | Trio Élégiaque No. 1
Ella van Poucke | Caspar Vos | Niek Baar