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“The Infant Minstrel and His Peculiar Menagerie” by Lera Auerbach in London

The BBC Symphony Orchestra together with the violinist Vadim Gluzman and the Crouch End Festival Chorus conducted by Edward Gardner will present the British premiere of Lera Auerbach’s Symphony No. 3 for violin, choir and orchestra “The Infant Minstrel and His Peculiar Menagerie” on 31 July 2016 at the Royal Albert Hall in London. The concert is part of the annual traditional summer series “BBC Proms” (15 July to 10 September 2016).

Lera Auerbach composed the work in response to a commission from the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and the BBC Proms. The world premiere took place on 7 April 2016 in Bergen, performed at the Grieg Hall by Vadim Gluzman, the Bergen Philharmonic Choir, the Edvard Grieg Choir and the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Edward Gardner. On 9 November 2016 Edward Gardner will conduct the Swiss premiere of the work with the Geneva Music Academy Chamber Orchestra and the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, with the solo part played again by Vadim Gluzman. Additional performances will be given on 10 November in Lausanne and on 11 November again in Geneva.

Lera Auerbach has provided the following commentary on her work:
“‘The Infant Minstrel and His Peculiar Menagerie’ is a symphonic fantasy for solo violin, choir, and orchestra. Violinist Vadim Gluzman performs the lead role of a traveling musical storyteller who introduces a collection of wondrous tales by the mysterious author Erroneous Anonymous. The Infant Minstrel guides listeners in a voyage of imagination.
Auerbach’s new composition speaks to the young and the young at heart with child-like, yet enigmatic and humorous poems in the tradition of ‘nonsense’ authors such as Edward Lear, Lewis Carol, Hilaire Belloc, and Mother Goose, as well as Edith Sitwell, Shel Silverstein, Edward Gorey, and Tim Burton. The text is relevant, yet timeless; absurd, yet profound; simple, yet multi-layered.
We meet characters such as the Common Corporant, the Moon Rider, and the Flying Pig that enjoys sitting on a cloud watching the crowd. The work embraces with humor the traditions of the British and Gaelic bard and the troubadour, whose songs told embellished and exotic tales. It also finds inspiration in the menagerie – a diverse collection of creatures and curiosities – and the sideshow presentation of oddities and the bizarre.”

31 July 2016
Royal Albert Hall, 7:30 PM
British premiere: Lera Auerbach
“The Infant Minstrel and His Peculiar Menagerie”. Symphony No. 3 for violin, choir and orchestra
Vadim Gluzman (violin)
Crouch End Festival Chorus
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Edward Gardner (direction)


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