Tuesday 14 June 2016

1816 – The Year Without a Summer

Mount Tambora, Indonesia
In 1816 the volcanic eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia had remarkable climactic consequences around the world, leading to one of the coldest years on record. A pair of concerts and a study day, 1816 - The Year Without a Summer, curated by Ian Ritchie at Kings Place (on 17 & 18 June 2016)  look at the effects of this unusual weather and darkness, and examine how it might have led to a period of passionate romanticism for many artists. Nothing was understood about the phenomenon at the time, but at Kings Place leading thinkers in the fields of neuroscience, meteorology, culture and social history will talk about the effects of the eruption, alongside performances of music from the period.

James Gilchrist and Anna Tilbrook present a programme of songs by Schubert and Beethoven, showing how the darkness and the cold weather may have influenced their moods and therefore their music. The second concert, Byron in Switzerland, combines imagery by Alberto Venzago with a narrative, all woven around music by Lizst, Beethoven and Schubert performed by Louis Schwizgebel (piano), who is joined by narrators Di Sherlock and Ian Ritchie.

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