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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Classical

War and Peace - We Remember



As we commemorate the Centenary of ANZAC and the 70th anniversary of the end of the second world war, we reflect on the past and look with hope towards the future. Explore
the themes of war and peace through the following works, specially chosen for their
themes of war, sacrifice and remembrance. These themes are explored in various ways, including music written in response to personal loss, settings of war poetry and works juxtaposing the virtues of peace with the horrors of war.


Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Elegy
by Hebert Howells

For solo viola, string quartet, and string orchestra
An early piece, composed as a personal tribute to a fellow student at the Royal College of Music killed in the First World War, Elegy is a prescient early pointer towards Howells’s later memorial works.

Wound Dresser
by John Adams

For baritone and chamber orchestra
Adams sets Walt Whitman's seminal text, recounting the poet's own experiences as a nurse during the American Civil War. 

For the Fallen
by Karl Jenkins

For narrator, SATB chorus and orchestra
A setting of Laurence Binyon’s famous ode honouring the war dead, familiar from Remembrance Day services, including the lines “At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them”.


Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Farewell to Arms
by Gerald Finzi

For tenor and small orchestra
This pair of songs, composed in 1926/7 and 1945, provides a meditation on the brevity of life and the memory of earlier soldiering days: "His helmet now shall make a hive for bees".

Ballad of Heroes
by Benjamin Britten

For tenor (or soprano) solo, chorus, and orchestra
Another product of his working relationship with Auden and the left-wing author, Randall Swingler, Ballad of Heroes is one of Britten’s most powerful statements from the politicized 1930s, written for the Festival of Music for the People.

Small Town
by Peter Sculthorpe

For small orchestra
Small Town was the third movement of a larger work and Sculthorpe re-arranged it for a small orchestra. He retained the harmonic progression of that old evergreen song, Heart and Soul, a favourite of Drysdale’s, and dedicated the work to his painter friend. The central section of the work has two trumpets playing ‘The Last Post” in canon.


Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde

Lament
by Peter Scultorpe

For strings
In one movement, the Lament is in three clearly-defined sections: the first is desolate, with the melodic line shared between cello and first violin; the second is somewhat impassioned; and, following the climax, the last, dominated by the cello, is again desolate. The work does, however, end with some degree of hope

The Armed Man
by Karl Jenkins

For chorus and orchestra or ensemble or brass band
This 'Mass for Peace' not only describes the horrors of military conflict but offers the hope of peace as an end to warfare. With over 1200 performances since its premiere in 2000, it is the most frequently programmed new work for choir and orchestra of recent decades. 

War Requiem
by Benjamin Britten

For soloists, chorus, boys' choir, orchestra and chamber orchestra
Commissioned to celebrate the opening of the new cathedral at Coventry, built to replace the one destroyed by bombs, Britten used the opportunity to write a large-scale composition embodying his deeply held pacifist and humanitarian beliefs. 


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