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BCMG & Knussen

World premieres by Oliver Knussen and Harrison Birtwistle, and music by Stravinsky and Jo Kondo.

Friday 23 June, 7.30pm

From £6.00 to £24.00

Britten Studio

Part of the Aldeburgh Festival season

Programme to include:

Birtwistle Chorale 1 2′
Stravinsky Balmont & Japanese Lyrics c.8′
Kondo Three Songs 13′
Birtwistle Chorale 2 2′
Birtwistle Dear Dusty Moth 5′ (UK premiere)

Kondo Standing 8′
Birtwistle The Sadness of Komachi 6′
Birtwistle Chorale 3 2′
Knussen Hototogisu 18′


Birmingham Contemporary Music Group
Claire Booth soprano
Robert Murray tenor
Marie-Christine Zupancic flute
Oliver Knussen conductor

A world premiere by Oliver Knussen is always a major occasion, and this one – a setting of haiku chosen personally by Knussen – comes as a wonderful surprise.

The inspiration was personal: a tribute to Stephen and Jackie Newbould, the former directors and creative spirits behind Birmingham Contemporary Music Group. So it’s entirely fitting that Knussen conducts BCMG tonight, and that the programme is as beautifully assembled as we’ve come to expect from these regular and very welcome visitors to Snape. Stravinsky’s oriental songs complement Knussen’s Japanese texts; Jo Kondo’s graceful, elusive Three Songs Tennyson Sung were a BCMG commission. A sequence of miniatures by Harrison Birtwistle – including three premieres – brings two of the most original creative forces in British music thrillingly into alignment.