John Woolrich series at Kings Place

John Woolrich series at Kings Place
Over three consecutive nights (30 June – 2 July), John Woolrich and friends will take over London’s newest concert hall, Kings Place. Woolrich is lucky enough to count three of the UK’s most exciting groups – the Scottish Ensemble, London Sinfonietta and Britten Sinfonia – as his ‘friends’ for the series, and for two of these, the ‘Scottish’ and the ‘Britten’, this will be there first time on the King’s Place stage.

Woolrich – the new Artistic Director at the Dartington International Summer School and previously associate Artistic Director at the Aldeburgh Festival – is no stranger to the art of programming. In Desert Island Discs-style, each concert showcases the extraordinarily varied musical landscape, past and present, in which Woolrich’s music sits: Mozart, Wolf and Monteverdi, alongside Schoenberg, Messiaen and Adès. These are concerts not to be missed!

Thursday, 30 June 2011 - 7:30pm / Hall One

Adagio and Fugue 
John Woolrich Ulysses Awakes
Wolf (arr. John Woolrich) Italian Songs
John Woolrich Capriccio
Schubert (arr. Mahler)
Death and the Maiden

Jonathan Morton

Ulysses Awakes is a beautiful and moving reworking of an aria from Monteverdi's 1640 opera The Return of Ulysses. A wonderfully lyrical and evocative work, it describes Ulysses' feelings as he awakes from being washed up on the shores of his homeland. It is a chamber work, scored for viola and ten solo strings (or string orchestra), premiered at Dartington Summer School in 1989.

'Moodily evocative ... stunning effects.'
The Citizen

Friday, 1 July 2011 - 7:30pm / Hall One
John Woolrich A Farewell 
Tansy Davies New work (World Premiere)
John Woolrich A Presence of Departed Acts
Thomas Adès Court Studies from The Tempest
Quatuor pour la fin du temps

A Presence of Departed Acts was commissioned to celebrate the 65th birthday of the economist and Nobel laureate James Mirrlees. It was expressly written for the same instruments (clarinet, cello, violin, piano) used by Messiaen in his Quartet for the End of Time, a work premiered in a German prisoner-of-war camp in 1941.

'An emotionally rewarding piece encompassing the gamut of grieving, from the tranquility of private lamentation to raw uncomprehending rage.' The Independent

Saturday, 2 July 2011 - 7:30pm / Hall One
Strauss Prelude to Capriccio 
Mozart Oboe Quartet
John Woolrich Quiddities
Verklaerte Nacht

An alternative title to Quiddities might have been Lake Greifen, after the Robert Walser story. The narrator swims in a small hidden lake. What will such a swim be like when the lake is dark and the sky full of stars? William Gass wrote 'The story says no more (the story is over), but we can guess the rest.' Commissioned by the Britten Sinfonia, and played by them in this concert.

Full listings of these concerts are on the Kings Place website
To read a full interview with John Woolrich on the King’s Place series please click here.