NATIONAL YOUTH ORCHESTRA OF GREAT BRITAIN (NYO) ANNOUNCES SUMMER RESIDENCY
- THOMAS ADÈS CONDUCTS PERFORMANCES OF POLARIS AND THE RITE OF SPRING IN SNAPE, BIRMINGHAM AND LONDON
- UK PREMIERE OF FRANCISCO COLL MURAL
- TOTALLY TEENAGE RECEPTIONS
- NYO PLAY THE SCHOOL PERFORMANCES OF THE RITE OF SPRING IN NOTTINGHAMSHIRE
- PERFORMANCES AT FESTIVAL BERLIOZ LA CÔTE ST-ANDRÉ
This Summer the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain will embark on a ‘Voyage for Orchestra’, which is how Thomas Adès describes his piece Polaris (2010). The programme also includes a UK premiere by Francisco Coll and Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. In addition to concerts at Snape Proms (3 August), Symphony Hall, Birmingham (4 August) and BBC Proms (5 August), there will be NYO Play the School performances of The Rite of Spring in Nottingham in September, along with a programme of NYO Inspire activities during the Summer. At NYO’s ‘Totally Teenage’ receptions in Birmingham and London, NYO’s Young Promoters from local schools – alongside NYO musicians - will introduce music from the concerts.
Thomas Adès, an acclaimed conductor and pianist as well as a composer, is one the most distinctive and inspirational figures in contemporary music, who has received countless accolades. The former NYO Musician (1988, percussion) is described by The Guardian as “Prodigious from early childhood, Adès has devoured, lived and breathed everything that caught his ear, letting all manner of music nourish his imagination.” Polaris takes the North Star as its inspiration, and conjures up a definite sense of vastness, with musicians placed offstage to enhance the sense of space.
Sarah Alexander, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of NYO, said: “For NYO musicians to work with Adès is to bring them into the presence of a remarkable imagination and talent. A previous generation of NYO Musicians who played The Rite of Spring under Boulez recall it as life-changing, and through working with the most brilliant composer, performer and conductor alive today, I believe these extraordinary teenage pioneers will be encouraged to become the most creative musicians they can be.”
Thomas Adès said: "I am very excited to return to NYO. I have the best memories of my year as a pianist and percussionist in the orchestra, and the thrill of working with the best players of their generation in the country is as great now as it was then. I am looking forward to working with them in my own music, exploring a spectacular new piece and joining with them to discover and unleash the power of the greatest orchestral work of the twentieth century.”
In this programme, combining richly evocative music derived from powerful natural forces, the world’s greatest orchestra of teenagers will also perform Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring - a rite of passage for young players - with its now familiar yet still astounding language, textures, rhythmic invention and unique place in the development of music.
The third piece in this extraordinary triptych of works will be a new 24-minute piece by Francisco Coll, Mural, commissioned by NYO with the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg & Philharmonie Luxembourg, and Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía (Valencia). Premiered in September 2016, this will be the first UK performance. “His ideas about music proceed from a strikingly individual and unusual musical mind” says his mentor Thomas Adès. Coll describes the piece as a synthesis of his musical language, as if across a mural, and the culmination of a period of his artistic development in a five-movement symphony.
Following the concerts in the UK, NYO will travel to the Festival Berlioz La Côte St-André/Isère on 27 August for a performance of The Rite of Spring and Polaris, along with Berlioz’s Rob-Roy Overture under NYO Associate Conductor Gerry Cornelius. NYO Musicians will also give community concerts of chamber music, and participate some of the festival’s informal events.
NYO will also travel to Nottinghamshire to perform Rite of Spring as part of NYO Play the School. On 18 September NYO musicians will give workshops with up to 80 musicians from the thriving music department at Trinity School, Nottingham, the state school which Sheku Kanneh-Mason and his siblings attended, and still attend. The initiative, in collaboration with Nottingham Royal Concert Hall and Nottinghamshire Music Hub, will see NYO musicians introducing the performance for pupils at Tuxford Academy, Nottinghamshire, a school in an area of rural deprivation where music is encouraged with free lessons made available to those on free school meals, and trips to see concerts at Nottingham Royal Concert Hall.