T R E E concert explores connections between nature and humankind,
with premiere of The Singing Tree by Christian Mason [pictured]
The highlight of the BCMG in Bloom season, the T R E E concert takes place
Friday 12 May at Birmingham Town Hall
World premiere of Christian Mason’s The Singing Tree, with text by Paul
Griffiths, plus the seminal Concertini for ensemble by Helmut Lachenmann
Exciting new learning resources for children to explore nature and sounds
BCMG present their long-awaited T R E E concert on Friday 12 May at Town Hall,
Birmingham. Originally due to take place in spring 2021 but delayed due to Covid,
T R E E now takes its place as the highlight of the 2023 BCMG in Bloom season. The
concert is a celebration of nature, with a programme that explores the connections
between nature and humankind.
Christian Mason’s new Sound Investment commission The Singing Tree receives its
world premiere, with text by Paul Griffiths. A piece six years in the making, the piece
focuses on the ‘natural’ series of overtones, with a libretto that takes the form of a tree.
The piece features the Finchley Children’s Music Group, whose conductor Grace
Rossiter has worked with Christian on developing the score for young voices.
Christian Mason, composer, comments: “This new piece for BCMG explores musical
metaphors for arborescence, organic growth, transformation and reaching for light as a
way of contemplating both the relation between humans and nature, and nature
(including humans) and the divine.”
The Singing Tree is performed alongside Helmut Lachenmann’s Concertini (2005), a
seminal work that BCMG have hoped to perform for many years. Ticket holders can also
enjoy a free pre-show performance by the BCMG NEXT ensemble, featuring works by
Mason and Lachenmann.
Stephan Meier, Artistic Director of BCMG, comments: “As the winter departs and is
replaced by the blossoming of spring, the changing of seasons continues to be an
unfathomable inspiration to creatives. Trees have been honoured since the beginning of
time, and today composers continue to refer to them as roots in their life and music.
BCMG in Bloom 2023, and in particular the T R E E concert, is a celebration of nature
and music, connectivity with other cultures, and a reminder to us all to appreciate the
natural world around us.”
T R E E has grown from a simple idea for a new musical work, to a multi-faceted project
with workshops for young musicians, extensive digital resources and real-life tree
planting around Birmingham. Working in partnership with Birmingham Trees for Life,
BCMG staff have planted saplings around the city.
Geoff Cole, Chairman of Birmingham Trees for Life, comments: “Trees are so
important, especially in a large industrial city like Birmingham, and if we want less
pollution, less flooding and cleaner air we simply have to plant more trees. Our
partnerships across the city with artists, poets, musicians and educators help spread the
message about how important it is to nurture nature, from planting trees and celebrating
trees through digging holes and bedding down our saplings to art, singing, writing,
drawing and composing.”
This commission was generously funded by Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, PRS
Foundation, and The Radcliffe Trust.
BCMG present T R E E
Fri 12 May, 7pm, Birmingham Town Hall
Tickets £15 – £28.50, from https://bmusic.co.uk/events/bcmg-t-r-e-e-concert
Neue Vocalsolisten Stuttgart
Finchley Children’s Music Group
Michael Wendeberg Conductor
Christian Mason b. 1984, The Singing Tree (2020, 30’) World Premiere
Helmut Lachenmann b. 1935, Concertini (2005) 33’
Free pre-show performance to ticket holders by BCMG NEXT at 6pm, with works by
Helmut Lachenmann and Christian Mason.