Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal College of Music, Sunday 13 March, Zvonimir Hačko, Conductor

London Sinfonietta, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Wednesday 27 April,
Jessica Cottis, Conductor

Philharmonia Orchestra, Cadogan Hall, Sunday 22 May,
Zvonimir Hačko, Conductor

Launched in September, the International Centre for Contemporary Music is a multi-faceted organisation devoted to the performance, production, and promotion of contemporary music and to encouraging audiences to experience works that are either entirely new or date from the recent past.

Programmed by ICCM’s Artistic Director & Music Director, Zvonimir Hačko, Leaning East, Music of Eastern Europe includes two world premieres of ICCM commissions and three UK premieres. The series’ aim is to combine performances of masterworks by Lutosławski and Gubaidulina with more recent compositions.

Music of Eastern Europe

Sunday 13 March

Amaryllis Fleming Concert Hall, Royal College of Music, 19.00

Thierry Escaich, organ; Zvonimir Hačko, conductor; Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

 Pēteris Vasks: Vēstijums (Message) (1982) for strings, two pianos and percussion [UK premiere]

Thierry Escaich: Organ Concerto No 1 (1995) for organ and orchestra [UK premiere]

Witold Lutosławski: Symphony No 3 (1983)

New Polish Music

Wednesday 27 April

Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, 19.00

Wojciech Błażejczyk, electric guitar; Jessica Cottis, conductor; London Sinfonietta

 Krzysztof Penderecki: Sinfonietta per archi (1992)

Wojciech Błażejczyk: Concerto for Electric Guitar & Orchestra (2020) [World premiere/ICCM commission]

Paweł Mykietyn: Prank for chamber orchestra (2021) [World premiere/ICCM commission]

 Two new pieces of Polish music are heard in tonight’s concert: the re-orchestrated version of Wojciech Błażejczyk’s Concerto for Electric Guitar and String Orchestra [originally written in 2016] and now scored with the addition of percussion and live electronics; and Paweł Mykietyn’s playful concerto for chamber orchestra “Prank”. Both are ICCM commissions receiving their world premiere.

Celebrating Sofia Gubaidulina

Sunday 22 May

Cadogan Hall, 19.00

Geir Draugsvoll, bayan; Zvonimir Hačko, conductor; Philharmonia Orchestra

Isidora Žebeljan: The Horses of St. Mark’s (2004) [UK premiere]

Sofia Gubaidulina: Fachwerk for bayan, percussion and strings (2009)

Witold Lutosławski: Concerto for Orchestra (1954)

The International Centre for Contemporary Music (ICCM) presents a celebration of Sofia Gubaidulina’s 90th birthday. Performed by the Philharmonia Orchestra, this is the third concert in the ICCM’s inaugural mini-series and features music by three luminary composers from Eastern Europe and their most original, trailblazing work, ending with Lutosławski’s monumental Concerto for Orchestra.

Zvonimir Hačko, ICCM’s Artistic Director & Music Director, said:

 “While we never seem to tire of the great standards by Beethoven, Schubert, Mahler, and the like, what about the greats of our own time? Leaning East presents works that may well become a part of the 20th– and 21st-century cannon. Here you will hear them in their native garb: fiery, emotive, digging deep, and un-ironed. Great, monumental, works by Witold Lutosławski and Sofia Gubaidulina are contrasted with the new Polish school — and a French interloper, Thierry Escaich, to clear the palate! Enjoy!”

Tickets are now on sale for these concerts which exemplify ICCM’s commitment to reviving a performance culture in which a wealth of new music is presented as a matter of course.

This month Mo. Hačko recorded a programme of Clarice Assad’s Symphony No. 1, Sofia Gubaidulina’s Fachwerk and Anna Clyne’s Rewind with the Philharmonia Orchestra for release on Signum in 2022.

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