Valentin Silvestrov is probably the most prominent composer of Ukraine. His work has received much attention, especially in recent decades, and not only in Europe. No small part of his fame has been due to numerous recordings released on the Munich-based label ECM.

Silvestrov was born in Kiev in 1937; he celebrates his 85th birthday on September 30. He did not want to leave his hometown of Kiev even with the start of the Ukraine war, but was persuaded by concerned friends to emigrate. Since then he has lived in Berlin.

As a young man, Silvestrov oriented himself toward the Western avant-garde, which got him into trouble in the Soviet Union. The music he has written in recent decades has also been described by himself as “metamusic” – music about music that meditates on something long past, always or at least mostly on a tonal basis. Nevertheless, Silvestrov’s current compositional style has nothing to do with “New Age.”

In 2022 Silvestrov was awarded the “OPUS Klassik 2022” for his lifetime achievements.