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BBC SO - Robert Crumb

From the Barbican Hall, London. Petroc Trelawny presents the BBC Symphony Orchestra and friends, under Martyn Brabbins, exploring music by maverick American composer George Crumb.

Presented by Petroc Trelawny.

In a concert given at the Barbican Hall, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and friends explore the music of one of the most original and unpredictable composers of our time - the American maverick George Crumb. Born in 1929 in Charleston, West Virginia, Crumb is hard to categorise, and is seen as a sonic inventor and a musical pioneer. There's a haunting sense of the mystical and spiritual about his work but it is also delicate and theatrical, rich in references to non-western music and composers such as Bach and Chopin.

The BBC SO perform his 1968 Pulitzer Prize-winning piece Echoes of Time and the River, which explores the nature of the passing of time, with the performers processing around the stage in four lines each at different speeds.

Pianist Joanna MacGregor joins the celebration playing his Little Suite for Christmas, AD 1979, described as a 'holy tone-poem' for piano, inspired by Giotto's frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapel.

The orchestra is then joined by soloists, soprano Claudia Barainsky, the Trinity Boys Choir and the New London Chamber Choir for a performance of Crumb's largest work in terms of performing forces, Star-Child, which traces a blazing, inspired vision from apocalyptic darkness to redeeming light.

Joanna MacGregor (piano)
Claudia Barainsky (soprano)
Trinity Boys Choir
New London Chamber Choir
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Martyn Brabbins (conductor)

Crumb: Echoes of Time and the River; Little suite for Christmas AD 1979 for piano; Star Child

Followed by a focus on Christmas music from around the world.

2 hours, 15 minutes

Last on

Fri 18 Dec 2009 19:00

Broadcast

  • Fri 18 Dec 2009 19:00