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Rahvusooperi sümfooniakontsert

Th 28/04/2022 19:00
Estonia kontserdisaal, Tallinn
18.90 - 31.90

Conductor: Arvo Volmer

Estonian National Opera Boys’ Choir and Orchestra

 

Programme:
Lepo Sumera “Three Sonnets” to William Shakespeare’s texts
Igor Stravinsky “Symphony of Psalms”
Jean Sibelius Third Symphony in C major, Op. 52.
 

Lepo Sumera’s “Three Sonnets” to William Shakespeare’s texts (1996) is a poetic and sensual piece for a soprano, reciter, boys’ choir and orchestra. The composer’s most expressive quality is romantic contrastive metaphors – his music displays play and sorrow, show and drama, masquerade and immense emotional sincerity.

          Lepo Sumera: “The story of how Shakespeare’s sonnets came to be, like that of how much of my music was written, lies in the collusion of curious random events. The sonnets were commissioned by the Estonian Cancer Society for a charity concert in the Estonia Concert Hall. In searching for texts, I finally settled on Shakespeare’s sonnets, which had a clearly intimate undertone, but love lyrics of general power. As it is almost always difficult to understand the text to be sung, I was drawn to precisely the possibility of performing the sonnets in both the original language and in the actor’s translation. In this work, the boys’ choir performs the role of commenter in the theatre of ancient times, adding to the texts speaking of love from centuries ago, arcs of emotions connecting different eras and thus a dimension of universality as well”.

          The most important part of Sumera’s works are his six symphonies. He has also created three instrumental concerts for cello and piano and a Concerto Grosso, smaller pieces for orchestra, many chamber works, cantatas and ballets “Anselm’s Story”, “Enclosed in a Room” and “Lizard”. Lepo Sumera has written music for films, such as “The Master of Kõrboja”, “Well, Come On, Smile” and “Hell”.

Info source: emic.ee.

“Symphony of Psalms” (1930) is Stravinsky’s first large-scale sacred work. The work was commissioned by Serge Koussevitzky to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, but the first performance was given by the Société Philharmonique de Bruxelles on December 13, 1930. Six days later it was performed by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Koussevitzky. Stravinsky had no intention of imitating the conventional nineteenth century symphony, consisting of four distinct movements. His intention was to create a dynamic three-movement work in which the orchestra and chorus should be on an equal footing. “It is not a symphony in which I have included Psalms to be sung. On the contrary, it is the singing of the Psalms that I am symphonising. The psalms are poems of exaltation, but also of anger and judgment, and even of curses. Although I chose Psalm 150 as one of the most popular ones, I regarded it as a song to be danced, as David danced before the Ark… I was requested an orchestral piece without chorus, but I had had the psalm symphony idea in mind for some time, and that is what I insisted on composing. The chorus plays the role of a community of believers who begin separated from God, but end reunited with Him”, said Stravinsky.

          The first performance in Estonia took place on March 29, 1936 conducted by Eduard Tubin and performed by the mixed choir of the Estonia Music Department and the theatre’s symphony orchestra.

Sibelius’ Third Symphony was written in 1907. In contrast to its two national-patriotic predecessors, the Third can be considered an important step in the formation of the composer’s unique style. When the symphony was first performed, its restraint, often referred to as classical, was deeply out of tune with the overblown romanticism and expressionism of its time.

Sibelius found himself released from the shackles of the likes of Wagner and Tchaikovsky through using his native landscape, mythology and folk music as inspiration, giving it a clearly Nordic sound.

“The symphony meets all the requirements of a symphonic work of art in the modern sense, but at the same time it is internally new and revolutionary – thoroughly Sibelian.”
Karl Flodin, critic, 1907

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Event Date / Time Venue Price  
Rahvusooperi sümfooniakontsert Th 28/04/2022 19:00 Estonia kontserdisaal, Tallinn 18.90 - 31.90
Price information
For the admission rules please check our website www.opera.ee  
 
Venue
Promoter
Rahvusooper Estonia
Estonia pst. 4 Tallinn 10148 Harjumaa
6831210
estonia@opera.ee
Reg. no: 74000033
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