Portfolio > Composers > Maxim Shalygin

Maxim Shalygin

Maxim Shalygin began studying composition seriously at the age of sixteen with Irina Ivashenko in his native city Kamianske, formerly Dniprodzerzhynsk, in Ukraine. In 2004 he trained for one year with Boris Tishchenko at the N. Rimsky-Korsakov Saint Petersburg State Conservatory. Disappointed in educational and social aspects, he returns to Ukraine. He received his first master’s degree in 2010 at the National Music Academy in Kyiv where he studied with Igor Shcherbakov and developed under the great influence of the creativity and personality of composer Svyatoslav Lunyov. One year later, in 2011, Shalygin received his second master’s degree at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague where he studied with Cornelis de Bondt and Diderik Wagenaar. He currently lives and works in the Netherlands.

Shalygin’s compositions include chamber, vocal, symphonic, and electro-acoustic music, as well as music for theater, ballet, and film. Composer extends the traditional array of playing techniques, not so much by resorting to ‘extended techniques’ but rather by unfolding the sounds of the instruments in all their congenial sonority. Shalygin’s compositions combine a wide range of techniques with psychological insight and spirituality. Hence no academic formulas nor avant-garde radicalisms, but rather a self-conceived scale of playing techniques in its own right that never severs the ties with sonority, and thus allows for maintaining a thoroughly tonal language.

His works have been performed at many famous venues and music festivals worldwide, including Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ, Concertgebouw, TivoliVredenburg, Zuiderstrandtheater, Gaudeamus Muziekweek, Cello Biënnale Amsterdam, November Music, Holland Dance Festival, Soundsofmusic, Wonderfeel, Dag in de Branding (NL), Klarafestival (BE), hcmf (UK), New Music Edmonton (CA), GAIDA Festival (LT), Gogolfest, Kyiv Contemporary Music Days (UA), and CIME/ICEM (US), Music on Main (CA) and many more. Leading contemporary music ensembles who have performed his works include the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, Amsterdam Cello Octet, Netherlands Radio Choir, Netherlands Chamber Choir, Asko|Schönberg, Amsterdam Sinfonietta, DoelenKwartet, Insomnio, Nieuw Ensemble, Slagwerk Den Haag, Amstel Quartet, and Keuris Quartet.

Selected works

Drop after drop available in different arrangements (2022)

Performed by Cello Biënnale Quintet

October 2022, Cello Biënnale Amsterdam

Commissioned by and specially composed for Festivals for Compassion, an initiative by Wonderfeel Festival


Lullaby for string orchestra (2008)

Performed by members of the Royal Concertgebouw orchestra

6 March 2022, Concertgebouw Amsterdam


Angel audiovisual work for violin and cello (music available in different arrangements) (2020)

Performed by Merel Vercammen & Maya Fridman

Commissioner: with the financial support of Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds & Cultuurmakersfonds


Todos los fuegos el fuego for 8 saxophone players | 2nd chapter from the S I M I L A R (2019)

Performed by Amstel Quartet & Keuris Quartet, conductor: Maxim Shalygin

29 June 2019, Dag in de Branding festival, Zuiderstrandtheater, Den Haag, NL

Commissioner: Dag in de Branding and November music festivals with financial support from the Fonds Podiumkunsten


Severade for 9 cello players | 3rd chapter from the S I M I L A R (2021)

Performed by Maya Fridman & Cello Octet Amsterdam

11 April 2021, Main Hall, TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht, NL

Commissioner: Cello Octet Amsterdam with the financial support of Fonds Podiumkunsten



For his Letters to Anna symphony for violin solo, Maxim Shalygin obtained an honorable mention at the 2012 Gaudeamus competition. In the same year, his music was selected for Lars von Trier’s GESAMT project. 

Shalygin was a composer-in-residence at Izolyatsia (UA), Storioni Festival, Soundsofmusic Festival (NL), and at the moment he is in residence at the Tomoko Mukaiyama Foundation (NL). 

Funded by the Stabilisation Fund for Culture and Education of the German Federal Foreign Office and the Goethe-Institut. goethe.de

Project team: Les Vynogradov, Albert Saprykin, Mariia Tytova, Polina Horodyska, Daria Vdovina, Dmytro Babenko, Olha Sauh