This autumn Thomas Adès begins a two-season residency with the Hallé orchestra, which sees Adès conduct two orchestral concert and curate a chamber programme. It begins on 28 October Adès conducts a concert that includes the UK premiere of Tower, the first UK concert performance of Adès’ ballet Purgatorio, and Märchentänze (2021) for violin and orchestra with Anthony Marwood, which received its UK premiere in 2022 at the BBC Proms.
Tower was written for the opening of a new artistic hub building designed by Frank Gehry - The Tower of the title – on the site of Luma Arles, Le Parc des Ateliers. The 2021 premiere was conducted by Ilan Volkov. The 2½-minute fanfare is scored for 14 trumpets, the same number as in Janáček's Sinfonietta, which concludes the programme.
Purgatorio is the middle part of Adès’ acclaimed ballet score Dante (2019-2020), choreographed by Wayne McGregor and designed by Tacita Dean; the world premiere recording from Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Philharmonic was released on Nonesuch earlier this year. The 24-minute piece uses pre-recorded voices in the form of cantorial chanting from the Sephardi Adès synagogue in Jerusalem; this traditional Syrian hazzanut singing leads the ascent of mount Purgatory.
The four mercurial movements of Märchentänze – ‘Dances from Fairytale’ – evoke singing skylarks and traditional British folk music – including folk rock legends Steeleye Span; the 13-minute piece was recorded by Pekka Kuusisto, Nicholas Collon and the Finish Radio Symphony Orchestra in 2022. Marwood previously premiered Adès’ Violin Concerto in 2005 – a newly published edition of the score for violin and piano, with the solo part edited by Marwood, is now available to purchase.
On 6 April 2024 Adès returns to Manchester to conduct his one-movement symphony for large orchestra Tevot (2007); the title of the 25-minute work evokes the Hebrew word for musical measures, as well as Noah’s ark, and the cradle in which the baby Moses is carried on the river. In the same concert Adès also gives the world premiere of a work by Oliver Leith. On 3 April Adès also curates a lunchtime chamber music concert in the Hallé St Peter's series, with the programme to be announced.
The residency continues Adès return to the orchestra, with whom he worked extensively earlier in his career. Most recently on 25 June Delyana Lazarova conducted Adès’ Dawn (2020) at the Bridgewater Hall as part of the Mcr:classical weekend. In 1994 the Hallé premiered Adès’ The Origin of the Harp for a chamber ensemble of ten players; the 9-minute piece was inspired by a painting by Daniel Maclise (1806–1870) in the Manchester City Art Gallery depicting a Celtic myth of metamorphosis. In 1996 the orchestra and Kent Nagano commissioned These Premises Are Alarmed, a virtuosic 3-minute work celebrating the acoustics of the newly-opened Bridgewater Hall.
2023/24 also sees Adès in residence at the Leipzig Gewandhaus. The programme of orchestral and chamber concerts includes the German premiere of Air – homage to Sibelius with Anne-Sophie Mutter, conducted by Andris Nelsons (17 May), Kirill Gerstein performing In Seven Days (14 September, also conducted by Nelsons), Märchentänze with Pekka Kuusisto conducted by the composer, as well as Tower (28 September). Full details available here.