Music full of joy, but also deep sadness: Elena Firsova’s “Ornaments of Joy”

As part of Elena Firsova's residency with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin (The Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra), numerous orchestral and chamber music works by the composer will be presented at the Konzerthaus Berlin and the Berliner Philharmonie, as well as three world premieres of orchestral works. Firsova’s works are to be juxtaposed with compositions by her husband Dmitri Smirnov and other Russian authors. The final symphony concert will also feature a reunion with Marko Nikodijevic, the composer in residence for the 2019/20 season. On 30/31 December 2021, the RSB commissioned the composition “Ornaments of Joy” for mixed choir and orchestra, based on a poem by Dmitri Smirnov, will be premiered at the Konzerthaus Berlin.  

The composer explains:

“This composition for choir and orchestra was written in the summer of 2020 shortly after the death of my beloved husband, the composer Dmitri Smirnov. I wanted to write music about a poem by Dmitri, for whom writing poetry was a kind of favourite hobby. I was told that the premiere would be together with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. So I tried to find something that had to do with joy. My husband’s little poem is really joyful at the end, but in my composition the joy falls into an abyss because our happy and joyful life is over.”

World premiere Elena Firsova
“Ornaments of Joy” for choir and orchestra after a poem by Dmitri Smirnov
Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra; Berlin Radio Choir
Conductor: Karina Canellakis
Work commissioned by the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra

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