Blackford: Pietà

Album cover art for upc 0710357639623
Catalog: NI6396

Bournemouth Symphony Chorus; Johnston, Jennifer; Dickson, Amy; Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra; Carr, Gavin; Gadd, Stephen; Bournemouth Symphony Youth Chorus

Pietà is a setting of the Stabat Mater by Richard Blackford, with additional poems by the Russian poet Anna Akhmatova. Performed by mezzo and baritone soloists, SATB chorus, children’s chorus, string and solo saxophone. Pietà was commissioned by the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus and St. Albans Choral Society (conductor George Vass) with support from the Nimbus Foundation. It was first performed on June 22nd, 2019 at The Lighthouse, Poole with Nimbus recording this remarkable work directly after the premier. Canticle of Winter was written during the winter of 2019 and was inspired by the last stanza of Robert Frost’s poem Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening: The sense of restlessness, of something unresolved, despite the beauty of the winter landscape, permeates the music. The dynamic range of the entire piece is from ppp to barely more than mf, and it is the soft, plangent sound of the soprano saxophone that evokes the stillness of the winter night and the traveler’s journey through it. Canticle of Winter was first performed on October 19th, 2019 by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra at Cadogan Hall, London, conducted by Gavin Carr. The soloist was Amy Dickson, to whom the work is dedicated. 

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