Donderdagavondserie The spirit of Oliver Knussen
Secret Theatre |
Requiem - Songs for Sue, op. 33
Two Organa, op.27
O Hototogisu! Dutch première
Jan van de Putte
New work, world première *)
conductor Bas Wiegers
soprano Katrien Baerts
*) with the support of Performing Arts Fund NL
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The world of contemporary music lost one of its most brilliant champions with the passing of the composer, conductor and mentor Oliver Knussen in the summer of 2018. Knussen’s small œuvre of what are often succinct works is a kaleidoscope of refinement, colour and ideas.
Asko|Schoenberg shares a long history with Knussen. In this tribute, the ensemble will be playing leading works by Knussen himself – including the Dutch premiere of his swan song, O Hototogisu! – as well as music by several of his friends. Knussen wrote Requiem – Songs for Sue in 2006 to commemorate the death of his wife. This is a vigorous, spirited work which sets poetry by Emily Dickinson, Auden, Rilke and others. A double concerto for soprano and flute, O Hototogisu! (2017) takes its name from the cuckoo. Julian Anderson dedicated his early composition Khorovod to Knussen, who was a great advocate of his work. Also on the programme is Secret Theatre (1984) by Harrison Birtwistle, eminent and idiosyncratic in equal measure. With Jan van de Putte, Knussen shared a fascination with Japanese culture.