On 6 October, Cassandra Miller’s recent orchestral work La Donna received its UK premiere at Symphony Hall in Birmingham. Finnegan Downie Dear conducted the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in the performance – the second outing for the work since its premiere earlier this year and the first in a newly revised version.

The 15-minute work takes its name from the Trallalero style of male singing in Genoa. An ensemble of nine is broken down into five basses, two guitar imitators, the melody line, and the highest, falsetto voice: la donna. Miller’s piece refers directly to a recording of La Partenza da Parigi made by Alan Lomax as its point of inspiration.

La Donna was commissioned by Orquesta Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya.

The first performance of La Donna was given by Orquesta Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya conducted by Ruth Reinhardt, on 30 April 2021, as part of Cassandra Miller's artist residency at L’Auditori, Barcelona.