Greenwood/Penderecki project released on Nonesuch, and in London's Barbican Hall

Greenwood/Penderecki project released on Nonesuch, and in London's Barbican Hall
Out now on Nonesuch Records, the much-awaited disc of works for string orchestra by Jonny Greenwood and his long-time hero, Krzysztof Penderecki.  In performances by the AUKSO Chamber Orchestra conducted by Penderecki and Marek Mos, it features Greenwood’s Popcorn Superhet Receiver (inspired by Penderecki’s Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima) along with the first recording of his homage to the Polish composer, 48 Responses to Polymorphia:
 
‘Greenwood doesn't need any false modesty when it comes to his classical pieces. His 48 Responses isn't just a good piece for a composer who is more used to the studio, it is a dazzlingly imaginative, gripping and novel work, full stop.  Don't just take my word for it: Penderecki thinks so too: “None of what Jonny does is a copy of what I have done.  Even his notation is different from mine.  He does things that I haven't done, and has gone in a different direction using some elements of my music.  He is very gifted. I like his music very much.”’
The Guardian (Tom Service), 23 February 2012
 
‘Greenwood's Popcorn Superhet Receiver (2005) is already a modern classic.  His 48 Responses is as surprising as it is original, taking the one brief moment of tonality in Penderecki's Polymorphia and developing it into a Bach-like chorale that morphs and splinters into a series of brief, hallucinatory movements.’
The Observer (Stephen Pritchard), 18 March 2012

… and performed in London’s Barbican Hall
On 22 March, Greenwood and Penderecki were joined in London’s Barbican Hall by the AUKSO Chamber Orchestra to recreate the joint concert of their works first curated at the European Culture Congress in Wroclaw last September, and which included the world premiere of Greenwood’s 48 Responses to Polymorphia.  The packed London venue gave them a standing ovation:
 
‘… far more gripping than I had expected.  Yes, there’s an element of Penderecki-lite about the clusters and curious ways of attacking the strings (including bowing them with a percussion shaker).  But Greenwood’s own personality – odd, sensuous, romantic and nostalgic (as his nods to Bach and Vivaldi showed) – ultimately overshadowed his debts.’
The Times (Richard Morrison), 26 March 2012
'The C major chord that brings Penderecki's piece to a close forms the starting point of the Bach-like Chorale that Greenwood then subjects to a process of variation and fragmentation, sometimes plunging into Stravinskyan polyrhythmic territory far removed from Penderecki's inherent fluidity.'