Wednesday 21 September 2022

Looking West: celebrating RVW's 150th birthday with a new work taking key themes from his life and work

Looking West

Looking West
, a dramatic cantata for singers, actors and instrumental ensemble with music by Julian Philips and words by Rebecca Hurst, was commissioned to mark the 150th anniversary of RVW's birth. Having been premiered this Summer at the Ryedale Festival and performed at the opening of the 40th anniversary Presteigne Festival) the work is being performed in London on 12 October 2022 (RVW's birthday) at Milton Court Concert Hall. George Vass conducts the Nova Music Ensemble with soprano Rebecca Bottone, mezzo-soprano Rebecca Afonwy-Jones and actors Alexander Knox and Maddie Purefoy.

Looking West interweaves three voices the Celtic Saint Bega (a saint of the Early Middle Ages; an Irish princess who became an anchoress), Cumbrian artist Winifred Nicholson (1893-1981) and a contemporary Pilgrim, who makes his way cross-country, struggling with familiar everyday issues. The work seeks to take key themes from the life and work of Vaughan Williams, especially the spiritual enrichment we can find in the natural world and the transformative power of music and art, and to ask what they mean today.  

Full details from the Barbican website.

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