Andrew Litton returns to Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra to conduct a concert inspired by the ‘Great American Songbook’ at Lighthouse, Poole (23 Oct) and Exeter University’s Great Hall (24 Oct). The programme features Copland’s Four Dance Episodes from Rodeo, Barber’s Violin Concerto and Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition.
Andrew Litton – Conductor Laureate
Andrew Litton was Principal Conductor of Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra from 1988 to 1994. Litton took the Orchestra on its first American tour in 1994 and has appeared on 14 of its recordings, including the Grammy winning Belshazzar’s Feast. Litton continues to perform regularly with the BSO, as its Conductor Laureate.
Award-winning Philippe Quint
The Orchestra will also be joined by Philippe Quint, a multi Grammy award-winning musician who has established himself as one of the leading violinists of his generation, who will perform Barber’s Violin Concerto.
Philippe told ArtsCulture: ‘I am so looking forward to my return with Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra with my good friend Andrew Litton to perform one of my favorite Violin Concertos by Samuel Barber. We have a long history with BSO, it’s an orchestra that has a very special place in my heart.’
Barber’s hauntingly exquisite Violin Concerto is one of the very finest of the last century. Of all instruments, the violin may be closest to the human voice, and this is how Barber employs it, maximizing the instrument’s warmth and intimacy. It sings passionate lines in the opening two movements – the andante is one of the great lyrical outpourings in American music, demonstrating Barber’s command of the long, lush melodic line – before delivering a whirlwind of triplet rhythms in the fast-paced finale.
Nostalgia and sense of place
Rodeo, originally called The Courting at Burnt Ranch, is unique in the extent to which Copland used many traditional American folk tunes practically intact – incorporated for their nostalgia and sense of place, not to mention that they are wonderful songs.
A musical wander
Mussorgsky’s musical wander through a fictitious gallery of works by his friend Victor Hartmann is a beautifully curated series of miniatures – some intimate, others grotesque. The piano originals are vivid in the way rhythms and harmonies are used to evoke the visual images, but in Ravel’s masterful orchestration, they are made even more so.
To book tickets, please visit bsolive.com
Philip R Buttall
Top image: Andrew Litton (left), Philippe Quint (right)