George Benjamin: Dream of the Song
Magnus Lindberg: Era
Richard Rijnvos: Fuoco e Fumo
Tan Dun: Double Bass Concerto ‘The Wolf’
Dominic Seldis (double bass)
Recorded live at Concertgebouw Amsterdam on 17-18 January 2013 (Lindberg), 29-30 January 2015 (Tan Dun), 12 June 2015 (Rijnvos), 25-26 September 2015 (Benjamin)
Label: RCO live
The seventh release in RCO Live’s Horizon series features world premieres recorded during three concert seasons. Magnus Lindberg’s sumptuous ‘Era’ – a birthday present from the Concertgebouw Hall to the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra – dates from the 2012-2013 season. Both Tan Dun’s catchy double bass concerto ‘The Wolf’ and Richard Rijnvos’s ‘fuoco e fumo’ about the 1996 destruction by fire of the Venetian opera house La Fenice, are from 2015. The programme opens with a beguiling 20-minute work for countertenor, women’s voices and orchestra, ‘Dream of the Song’, Benjamin’s first work since his ground-breaking opera ‘Written on Skin’, was premiered in September at Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw by the countertenor Bejun Mehta, the ladies of the Netherlands Chamber Choir and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by its composer. The work sets verse by three major poets who spent formative years in Granada; two Hebrew poets of mid-11th century, Samuel HaNagid and Solomon Ibn Gabirol (sung by solo countertenor in English versions by Peter Cole), and Gabriel Garcia Lorca (sung by the female chorus in the original Spanish). Commissioned by the Royal Concertgebouw, BBC and Boston Symphony Orchestras and the Festival d’Automne, the work received its UK premiere on 18 March with Iestyn Davies, the BBC Singers and BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Oliver Knussen.