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Elena Firsova's “Erwartung” to Be Premiered in Volgograd

At the beginning of this year, the Osnabrück Symphony Orchestra will be making a guest appearance in Volgograd, the former Stalingrad, the first German orchestra to do so since the Second World War. Together with the Volgograd Philharmonic Orchestra, the Osnabrück Symphony will perform the central memorial concert commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of the Battle of Stalingrad on 3 February 2013. On the programme are the Ninth Symphony of Ludwig van Beethoven as well as the world premiere of a work by Elena Firsova commissioned for this occasion entitled “Erwartung” for mixed choir and orchestra, Op. 126.

The German premiere of “Erwartung” will take place on 1 June 2013 in Osnabrück (once more with the Volgograd Philharmonic Orchestra) under the direction of Andreas Hotz.

Elena Firsova comments on her work as follows:
“I was very fascinated when in April 2012 I suddenly received an e-mail from Christian Heinecke of the Osnabrück Symphony Orchestra with the suggestion of writing a composition for a project dedicated to the Stalingrad Battle. Stalingrad was a crucial point in the Second World War, as the Russian victory led to the liberation of the World from Nazism. But for the Soviet Union it also meant the victory of Stalin's regime for another eight years at least.
My one-movement composition is called ‘Erwartung’, because it begins with the seemingly peaceful landscape of a waste land, but at the same time with the feeling of anticipation of a great battle with thousands of victims on both sides. The decisive battle is depicted from bar 101. At the end of the piece I included a choir (as a coda) setting a poem of the great Russian poet Alexander Blok. The words of the poem could be the words out of the grave of an unknown soldier. So it is a little Requiem for all the innocent victims of that battle and the Second World War in general. In the last 7 bars you still hear the pianissimo of a side drum reminding us of the many battles and victims that were still to come …
I am very grateful to Osnabrueck's symphony orchestra and Christian Heinecke for giving me such a fascinating and challenging commission!”

On the evening of 3 February 2013, Deutschlandradio Kultur (starting at 8:03 PM) will broadcast a live recording of the concert.

3 February 2013
Filarmonia, 7 PM
World premiere: Elena Firsova
”Erwartung“ for mixed choir and orchestra
Osnabrück Symphony Orchestra
Choir and Orchestra of the Volgograd Filarmonia
Andreas Hotz (direction)


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