Here is what they have to say: Of all contemporary music, opera is perhaps the genre that epitomises NMC’s unique role in promoting British composition at its most innovative. The financial and artistic risks inherent in new opera, the paucity of repeat runs and the unwillingness of many mainstream record labels to take up this repertoire require NMC to step into the breach and make these works permanently available to a global audience. NMC has recorded over a dozen contemporary British operas to date, and Gawain is perhaps the work that we are most frequently asked to release!
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In the latest instalment of his Guide to Contemporary Classical Music in The Guardian, Tom Service presents the music of Luciano Berio.
“Wherever you start with Berio, you won't want to end, only keep listening, listening on …”
The composer describes the six movements of Or Voit Tout En Aventure as “settings of three texts written in medieval French and Italian, which are linked in some way by the theme of music. They all exist as songs written in the latter part of the 14th century, which I have shamelessly torn from their original musical context and treated purely as texts.” For By the Screen in the Sun at the Hill on the Gold, Bedford tried to capture “the ‘essence’ of Johannesburg”.
By the Screen in the Sun at the Hill on the Gold
for 18 players | 18’
1 1 2 1 - 1 2 1 0 - perc(2), pno, vln(2), vla, vc(2), cb
Or Voit Tout En Aventure
for soprano and 16 players | 14'
1 1 1 1 - 1 1 1 0 - perc(2), hp, acc, vln(2), vla, vc, cb
6.12.2012, London; Yunkyung Lee, s; Philharmonia Orchestra, cond. Peter Hirsch
In January 2013, the Southbank Centre will launch a year-long festival based on Alex Ross' book The Rest is Noise, with the aim to tell the story of 20th century music. In anticipation of the festival, The Guardian has asked various artists about their favourite classical works. It’s good to see pieces by Stockhausen, Reich, Berg, Schönberg, and Webern among the influences mentioned.
I’ve just returned from the rehearsals of the new production of my music theatre Cantio. The rehearsals are going great, the team is very professional and will be working on a daily basis in the following month. The new Berlin production of Cantio is not a simple repetition of the initial piece. The main text and the musical score are fixed, but there is an additional open layer, which can be interpreted in many different ways for instance by an actor or in combination with other media such as dance, film, sounds, etc. In this way each new production is given enough space for creativity and experiments. Sharon Joyce’s original text was translated by Erika Ria Otto, which is why the narrator will now be speaking in German, thus giving the work a new perspective. As you can imagine, I’m really looking forward to the premiere.
Find out more about Cantio on the composer's homepage.
Texts on Cantio.
for narrator, soprano, tenor, bassbaritone, ensemble and electronics
world première of the new version, 17|19|20/1/2013, Berlin
Margret Giglinger, s; Florian Feth, t; Tobias Hagge, b; Lithuanian Ensemble Network
The London Sinfonietta has asked David Fennessy 5 questions – in their blog, the Irish composer talks about sources of inspiration, his favourite projects and his musical background. Find the full interview on the London Sinfonietta’s Blog.
Fennessy's latest piece Caruso (Gold is the sweat of the sun) for 4 samplers and electric guitar premieres on 12 December at the Muziekgebouw Amsterdam.