Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Eminent international composer conducts own works for NZSO

Eminent international composer conducts own works for NZSO Hear & Far concert tour

Eminent Scottish composer and conductor James MacMillan will conduct the NZSO in Hear & Far, an annual concert tour that features the best of international contemporary classical music alongside the best of New Zealand contemporary classical music.

Dr MacMillan will conduct two of his own works, his landmark The Confession of Isobel Gowdie and the more recent Woman of the Apocalypse, as well as the world premiere of The Clock Stops, a brand new commission by New Zealand composer Lyell Cresswell. It is the second new work by a Kiwi composer to receive its world premiere in the NZSO 2014 Season.

NZSO Chief Executive Christopher Blake highlights the significance of this tour:

“When you think about the opportunity to hear a composer conduct their own works, it is unusual and special. I think many musicians will get a real delight in seeing a conductor who is realising their own music. And this is quite rare.”

Famous composers who have previously conducted definitive performances of their works with the NZSO include Igor Stravinsky (1961) and William Walton (1964).

MacMillan is internationally acclaimed, and a foremost composer of his generation. He is also active as a conductor. His compositional style combines a multitude of influences but remains accessible. The Guardian has described him as “a composer so confident of his own musical language that he makes it instantly communicative to his listeners.” MacMillan was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2004.

The premiere of The Confession of Isobel Gowdie at the 1990 Proms with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra attracted great attention. The work is inspired by the story of Isobel Gowdie, a victim of the witch hunt that gripped Reformation Scotland. In 1662, under extreme torture, she confessed to a number of acts of witchcraft and was subsequently burnt at the stake. MacMillan says: “the work craves absolution and offers Isobel Gowdie the mercy and humanity that was denied her in the last days of her life.”

MacMillan’s 2012 concerto for orchestra, Woman of the Apocalypse, references the mysterious character in the Biblical book of Revelation. MacMillan drew ideas from images of this woman:

“Looking through the different artworks over the centuries I was inspired and given visual stimulus by a whole range of different artists. I’m always interested in how either visual images or even just ideas from literature or scripture… can in fact transform into sound.”

New Zealand music is represented in this concert tour by a new work by Lyell Cresswell, one of our great contemporary composers. The NZSO commissioned Cresswell to write a work to commemorate the Canterbury earthquakes. Although the work began as a response to the Canterbury earthquake events, it then took on a wider perspective.

Entitled The Clock Stops, Cresswell’s work is a song-cycle, incorporating poems by well-known Kiwi author Fiona Farrell written for this purpose. The poems are about the history of cities, ancient and modern. Cresswell and Farrell have collaborated twice before, and this reprise of their successful partnership promises a significant addition to New Zealand contemporary music.

“All the music in this song-cycle springs, in one way or another, from the words – from the poems that Fiona Farrell has written for it,” says Cresswell.

NZSO Chief Executive Christopher Blake says of the commission:

“The Clock Stops is connected to the devastation that Christchurch has suffered. Lyell conveys the emotions that we all feel about Christchurch and Canterbury through these compelling settings of poems about cities and their histories.”

The poems will be performed by New Zealander and prominent international opera singer, bass baritone Jonathan Lemalu. Frequently performing on the world’s most important operatic, orchestral and recital stages, Lemalu is one of the leading singers of his generation.

In Hear & Far the NZSO will again bring audiences the finest compositional voices of today from home and overseas.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Eddie Izzard: UK Comedy Legend Returns

Hailed as one of the foremost stand up comedians of his generation. Star of stage and screen. Tireless supporter of charity. Runner. Political campaigner. Fashion Icon... February 2015, Eddie Izzard will bring his massive FORCE MAJEURE world tour to New Zealand with tickets going on sale at 10am on Tuesday 28th October. More>>

Festival Starts 28 Oct: Improv Fest Makes Up New Show

For any other festival, finding out less than two weeks from showtime that half the cast of a programmed show can’t make it to New Zealand would be a nightmare. Instead, the New Zealand Improv Festival Director Jennifer O’Sullivan saw an opportunity ... More>>

NZ Music Awards Finalists: Lorde, Sol3 Mio Top 2014 Tuis Charge

Lorde has taken the music world by storm during the past year and she co-leads the 2014 Tui charge with five finalist spots. Joining her is newcomer family opera trio, Sol3 Mio. They are followed closely by Ladi6 and David Dallas, both up for four awards each. More>>

From 'Luther' Creator: Major New Zealand Crime Series For BBC

Libertine Pictures and writer Neil Cross have teamed up with leading international TV producer Carnival Films to develop a major new crime series set in Rotorua. Libertine will develop the contemporary drama series with Carnival, producer of internationally-acclaimed British period drama Downton Abbey, for the BBC. More>>

ALSO:

Family Statement: Death Of Ewen Gilmour

“Ewen was a much loved and cherished member of our family, he was a larger than life character and by his very nature was kind, generous and always giving of his time to those who asked for his help." More>>

ALSO:

Auckland: St. Jerome's Laneway Festival - Line-Up Announced

Traversing seven cities and three countries, the festival has well and truly settled into its home in each state. From the grassy knolls and towering silos at home in Auckland, to the sparkling backdrop of the Maribyrnong... More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: No Longer An Island

Simon Nathan reviews 'Zealandia: Our Continent Revealed': The idea that New Zealand is part of a large submerged continent is not new... There was renewed interest in the extent of offshore New Zealand from the 1970s onwards with the start of offshore drilling for oil and gas, and this was given impetus by a UN agreement which allowed countries to claim an Extended Continental Shelf (ECS). More>>

Art: Simon Denny Recreates Kim Dotcom’s Personal Effects

Who owns what? How has the internet changed our relation to the world? These are two of the many questions Simon Denny raises in the latest exhibition at the Adam Art Gallery, opening on Saturday 4 October. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news