Newsletter:  Dunedin Symphony Orchestra Notes

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Performance partners

The Dunedin Symphony Orchestra regularly accompanies productions by resident and touring opera, ballet, musical and choral companies. The following are our engagements for the 2017 season:

The Armed Man, Saturday 1 April 2017, 7:30 pm, Dunedin Town Hall

2017-04armedman-eventfindaHenryk Górecki: Totus tuus
Karl Jenkins: The Armed Man – A Mass For Peace

In The Armed Man Karl Jenkins has fashioned a work that uses the ancient mass structure to communicate a powerful message for world peace. To this end, the composition uses texts from classic poets, biblical verses and the traditional mass, as well as from Muslim, Hindu, and Japanese sources. The music is powerful in its melodic simplicity and is cosmopolitan in its inspiration.

The work conjures images of war and the threat of The Armed Man, but ends with a simple chorale based upon an excerpt from the Book of Revelations, promising that “… God shall wipe away all tears… and there shall be no more death.” This must be the heart-felt prayer of us all: Dona Nobis Pacem (Give Us Peace).

The performance will be enhanced by the simultaneous showing of The Armed Man Film which was created to complement the music through historic and contemporary images of many aspects of war and its impact on the world.

The concert will begin with an a capella performance of Henryk Górecki’s Totus tuus. This work, subsequently acclaimed a contemporary classic, was written for mixed choir in 1987 to celebrate Pope John Paul II’s third pilgrimage to Poland. The music repeats a simple chant form to slowly build a musical affirmation of faith.

Handel’s Messiah, Tuesday 12 December 2017, 7:30 pm, Dunedin Town Hall

2015-12messiah-eventfindaMessiah is heard around the world during the Christmas season, being greatly appreciated, admired and enjoyed. Handel began composing Messiah on August 22, 1741, and completed it twenty-four days later. The scholar Clifford Bartlett writes, “such speed was not unusual, nor was the time of year. Not much happened in London during the summer, so it was a good time to get ahead with the preparation for the next season…  Bach could produce a cantata, organizing the copying of parts, and rehearse and perform it every week: Three weeks to compose an oratorio without the immediate responsibility for organizing the performance was, therefore, ample. But, however hasty the composition, the power of the musical imagination, the wealth of ideas, the depth of inspiration, and the sheer variety of invention continue to astonish.”

The Dunedin Symphony Orchestra is pleased to provide orchestral accompaniment for City Choir Dunedin’s concerts in the Dunedin Town Hall.