Instrumentation

perc(2): 2 small drums/tpl.bl/wdbl/2 small drums/t.bells/11 tuned Thai gongs/2 guero/2 tgl/steel pans – harpsichord – strings (55442)

Availability

Full score on sale (HPOD1022)

Full score and parts for hire

Programme Notes

Songs of Li Po was commissioned by the Aldeburgh Festival. Three poems by Li Po are set for mezzo-soprano, twenty strings, two percussion and harpsichord. With a sideways glance at Mahler - who set very romanticised translations of the eighth century Li Po in Das Lied von der Erde - a mezzo is used and pentatonic harmonies too. David Hinton's translations bring out the curious elliptical style of the original, cutting out small connecting words in a chiselled style suggesting absolute presence in the Nature about which the poet writes. Li Po is a solitary wanderer who, with buddhist detachment and sometimes wry humour, glides through awesome landscapes caring nothing for health or safety. His rapture is one of identification: and the work progresses from the tumultuousness of mountain cascades to the silence of sitting before a mountain and ceasing to be - a transcendent diminuendo. Jonathan Harvey

Songs of Li Po

1pm

Barbican Hall, Barbican Centre (London, United Kingdom)

Guildhall School of Music Symphony Orchestra, Richard Baker

Songs of Li Po

No Venue (Vilnius, Lithuania)

Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra, Nora Petrocenk, Robertas Servenikas

Songs of Li Po

Northern Stage (Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom)

Royal Northern Sinfonia, Pierre-André Valade, Sarah Connolly

Songs of Li Po

BBC Radio 3 (United Kingdom)

Royal Northern Sinfonia, Pierre-André Valade, Sarah Connolly

Songs of Li Po

Snape Maltings Concert Hall (Snape, Suffolk, United Kingdom)

Royal Northern Sinfonia, Pierre-André Valade, Sarah Connolly