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Janulytė, Justė

Born 1982 in Vilnius, she studied composition with Bronius Kutavičius and Osvaldas Balakauskas at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre, Alessandro Solbiati at Milan’s Giuseppe Verdi Conservatoire, as well as during various masterclasses with Luca Francesconi, Helena Tulve, and others.

Her music has been played in Europe, the United States, Canada, and Australia.

Justė Janulytė first came into public view in 2004 when her graduation work White Music for 15 strings was awarded as the best chamber piece at the competition organised by the Lithuanian Composers’ Union. She has been awarded at the same competition in 2010 for best orchestral work (Textile), best chamber work (Elongation of Nights), and 1st Prize for Sandglasses. In 2009 Aquarelle for choir won the 1st Prize (in the category of composers under 30) at the International Rostrum of Composers in Paris. Within the span of several years her experimental and highly visionary works have earned her international renown and official recognition at home in the form of the Young Artist Prize awarded by the Lithuanian Ministry of Culture in 2011. In 2013 her Sandglasses was performed at the Flagey Centre in Brussels at the closing event of the Lithuanian Presidency of the EU Council. Most of her works, written for “monochromatic” ensembles (such as 24 flutes, 21 strings, 16 voices, and so forth), represent slow and gradual “thermodynamic” metamorphoses of texture, timbre, register, articulation, and dynamics. While balancing between the aesthetics of minimalism, sonorism and spectral music, Justė Janulytė composes acoustic metaphors of optic ideas (Silence of the Falling Snow, 2006; Pendulums, 2011; Observation of Clouds 2012 etc.) and researches the visual nature of musical phenomena in the works where sound and image are fused together (Breathing Music, 2007; Eclipses, 2007; Sandglasses, 2010).

Since 2006 Justė Janulytė has been teaching contemporary music language at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre. In 2011 she was a jury member at the NUBERG composition competition, organised by the Berg Orchestra in Prague, and was guest lecturer at the Process 2013Nordplus Music Laboratory in Nida, Lithuania. In 2014 she held composition masterclasses at the Sassari Conservatoire in Italy. In 2014 her first portrait double album Sandglasses was released by the Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre, consisting of a DVD with Sandglasses and CD with her major acoustic works. She is also active as a writer on music. She lives and works in Vilnius and Milan.


Major works: Who has traced the abyss of July night...? for four flutes (2004), White Music for 15 strings (2004), Let’s Talk about Shadows for clarinet, violin and piano (2004), Endings for saxophone quartet (2005), Silence of the Falling Snow for two pianos (2006), Breathing Music for string quartet and kinetic sculptures (2007), Eclipses for violin, viola, cello, double bass, live electronics and soundproof glass installation (2007), Aquarelle for choir (2007), Textile for orchestra (2006–8), Psalms for cello and electronics (2008; version for eight bass flutes, 2014), Elongation of Nights for string orchestra (2009), Sandglasses for four cellos, live electronics and multimedia (2010; version for string quartet and live electronics, 2015), Labyrinths for alto flute, clarinet in Band string quartet (2010), Pendulums for string quartet and orchestra or five string quartets (2011), Observation of Clouds for choir and chamber orchestra (2012), Warum betrübst du dich, mein Herz? for organ (2012), Ihr Schatten schneller Zeit for 16 voices (2014), Plonge for cello and 12 voices (2015), Radiance, stage installation for 12 voices, live electronics and video (2015).