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Flanders Symphony Orchestra with Simon Callow

Flanders Remembers

Repertoire

Debussy
Berceuse héroïque
Elgar
Carillon
Ibert
The Ballad of Reading Gaol
Richard Blackford
In Flanders Fields
Piet Swerts
The Harmonium of the Talbot House
Elgar
Sospiri
Elgar
Pomp and Circumstance Marches Nos. 3 & 4

Performers

Simon Callow
narrator
Jan Latham-Koenig
conductor

Flanders Symphony Orchestra, one of Belgium’s most distinguished orchestras, under its Music Director Jan Latham-Koenig, presents two unique programmes weaving music, poetry and human responses to the realities of war.

The first two pieces by Debussy and Elgar were written as contributions to King Albert’s Book published in Britain by The Telegraph, as Debussy put it ‘an homage to so much patient suffering’ after the German invasion of Belgium in World War 1.

Ibert’s three-movement symphony based on Oscar Wilde’s poem, narrated by Simon Callow, captures the brutal beauty of his meditations on life in gaol and his reflections on morality, the death penalty and the penal system.

Composers Richard Blackford and Piet Swerts have been commissioned by the Orchestra to write music inspired by war atrocities in Flanders – John McCrae’s In Flanders Field is the inspiration for Richard Blackford’s new work. Piet Swerts writes, ‘I knew that the power of music could evoke and transcend this drama’, and the concert ends with the positivity of Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance Marches.

Part of Zurich International Orchestra Series 2015-16

Part of Zurich International Orchestra Series 2015‑16

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