Saturday 9th November: Pioneers of Percussion and Orchestra / Oval Space, 32 The Oval, E2 9DT
Bartók’s masterpiece Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta broke new ground in the 1930s, placing the percussionist at thecentre of the classical orchestra. From its vibrant flashes of syncopation to its ominous, brooding atmospheres, and the unmistakable streak of traditional Hungarian melody, Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta is among the essential works of early Modernism in music. Among the piece's champions was Stanley Kubrick, who used Its haunting slow movement to chilling effect in The Shining
Following his Concerto for Turntables and Orchestra, which received its acclaimed Proms debut in 2011, G Prokofiev turned his attention to another unfamiliar solo instrument: the orchestral bass drum, for his Concerto for Bass Drum. His Concerto elicits an astonishing palette of sounds, from the delicate scraping of the drum skin to the booming resonance of the low end. This innovative sound world is woven into Prokofiev's trademark hybrid musical language, informed by both modern classical and urban electronic forms.
Xenakis' Psappha (1976) for solo percussion takes its influence from the ancient Greek poetry of Sappho - "the first to introduce changes or metabolae in the rhythmic formulas she used" (Xenakis). Scored for sixteen unpitched instruments, divided into 'wood' and 'metal', and paying particular importance to contrast of attack and silence, the piece focuses no the rhythmic side to percussion and the exciting variety of sounds and effects that this can produce.
Young composer Kate Whitley's Split, for solo clarinet, solo percussion and string orchestra brings us up to date with the emerging generation of young composers. With Rozenn Le Trionnaire (clarinet) and Jude Carlton (percussion) as soloists.
Tickets: £8 /10 HERE (Wegottickets)