Ferneyhough: La terre est un homme BBC Symphony Orchestra, Martyn Brabbins, Exaudi, James Weeks & Ensemble Recherche
- Brian Ferneyhough (1943 - ):
- 1Liber Scintillarum19:02
- Missa brevis:
- 3I. Kyrie01:56
- 4II. Gloria03:34
- 5III. Sanctus02:27
- 6IV. Benedictus02:22
- 7V. Agnus Dei02:53
- La terre est un homme:
- 8La terre est un homme13:04
Info zu Ferneyhough: La terre est un homme
Brian Ferneyhough is widely recognized as one of today’s foremost living composers. Since the mid-1970s, when he first gained widespread international recognition, his music has earned him a reputation as one of the most influential creative personalities and significant musical thinkers on the contemporary scene.
The monolithic La Terre est un Homme, with its 4-foot-tall score and written for an orchestra of eighty-eight, each of whom at times becomes a soloist with their own individual stave, caused a scandal at its 1979 premiere and has scarcely been heard since. The title comes from a painting from 1942 by Roberto Matta, which reminded Ferneyhough of a dream he had experienced: ‘I dreamt of a strange and alien planet traversed by a pitilessly hot sun. It was basically a desert landscape. The remarkable thing was, I seemed to be seeing every single grain of sand separately, not only in its spatial dimensions but also – somehow – in its individual weight. All was in slow, ineluctable motion. Between sharply contoured rocks scuttled tiny, scorpion-like creatures. One senses the extreme complexity but inevitability of this strange combination of leaden, slowly-moving sand and sudden flashes of intensely coloured movement.’ The second giant orchestral work on this album is Plötzlichkeit which includes three female singers, whose vocalise blends with the orchestra like a modern-day Debussy’s Sirènes. The BBC Symphony Orchestra under conductor Martyn Brabbin's direction throw themselves fearlessly into this demanding and densely notated music.
Brian Ferneyhough was just 26 when he composed Missa Brevis. Written for 12 voices and divided into three four-part choirs, it is superbly performed on this album by EXAUDI. The most recent work is Liber Scintillarum, commissioned by ensemble recherche and premiered at Darmstadt in 2012.
"Four works spanning Ferneyhough’s dauntingly avant-garde career make a stimulating sequence...The title work, a 13-minute essay in barely relieved orchestral density, scandalised players at its 1979 premiere, but is beginning, thanks to performances such as this, to come clear." (Sunday Times)
"La Terre [is] one of the most remarkable orchestral achievements of the last half-century...The effect is massive and mesmerisingly overwhelming, punctuated by rare moments of piercing clarity, when the music thins to a single line, or a becalmed, beautifully chilly chord...an exceptionally rewarding collection." (The Guardian)
Olivia Robinson, soprano
Jennifer Adams-Barbaro, soprano
Cherith Millburn-Fryer, alto
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Martyn Brabbins, conductor
James Weeks, conductor
is Music Director of the English National Opera. An inspirational force in British music, Brabbins has had a busy opera career since his early days at the Kirov and more recently at La Scala, the Bayerische Staatsoper, and regularly in Lyon, Amsterdam, Frankfurt and Antwerp. He is a popular figure at the BBC Proms and with most of the leading British orchestras, and regularly visits top international orchestras such as the Royal Concertgebouw, DSO Berlin and Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony (all of whom he conducted last season). Known for his advocacy of British composers, he has also conducted hundreds of world premieres across the globe. He has recorded over 120 CDs to date, including prize-winning discs of operas by Korngold, Birtwistle and Harvey. He was Associate Principal Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra 1994-2005, Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal Flemish Philharmonic 2009-2015, Chief Conductor of the Nagoya Philharmonic 2012-2016, and Artistic Director of the Cheltenham International Festival of Music 2005-2007. He is currently Visiting Professor at the Royal College of Music and Music Director to the Huddersfield Choral Society alongside his duties at ENO, and has for many years supported professional, student and amateur music-making at the highest level in the UK.
In 2017/18 at English National Opera Brabbins conducts the world premiere of Nico Muhly’s Marnie and a revival of Marriage of Figaro – his first productions as Music Director. He launches a Vaughan Williams symphonic cycle with the BBC Symphony at the Barbican (and recorded for Hyperion) and tours Holland with the BBC Scottish Symphony, with whom he continues his Tippett symphony cycle at the Glasgow City Halls and also for Hyperion. He celebrates the London Sinfonietta’s 50th birthday at the Southbank, and conducts the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic at the Holland Festival 2018. In Summer 2017 he conducts Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius with the Philharmonia at Three Choirs and he also conducts the final concert of the Edinburgh International Festival with the BBC Scottish Symphony.
Brabbins’ extensive discography ranges from Romantic to contemporary repertoire. He won the Gramophone Award for Birtwistle’s Mask of Orpheus with the BBC Symphony (NMC), the Cannes Opera Award for Korngold's Die Kathrin with the BBC Concert Orchestra (CPO), and the Grand Prix du Disque in the 2013 opera category for his recording of Jonathan Harvey’s Wagner Dream.
He studied composition in London and conducting with Ilya Musin in Leningrad, subsequently winning first prize at the 1988 Leeds Conductors' Competition, launching his international career.
is a composer and conductor specialising in new music, based in the UK. His music is performed and broadcast worldwide and four portrait discs of his work have been released to date: Mala punica (Winter&Winter, 2017), Signs of Occupation (Métier 2016), mural (confront 2015) and TIDE (Métier 2013). His music can also be heard on the Wandelweiser, HCR and NMC labels. He has written for many leading ensembles and soloists including Plus-Minus, Quatuor Bozzini, London Sinfonietta, New London Chamber Choir, Phoenix Piano Trio, EXAUDI, Ekmeles, Mira Benjamin, Alison Balsom, Apartment House and Anton Lukoszevieze. His music is published by University of York Music Press.
His work is typically focused on music for soloists or small ensembles, exploring pared-down, ‘primary’ musical syntaxes and systems, with particular interests in modality, microtonality, modularity and indeterminacy, embodied/haptic dimensions of sound, and plain-speaking. Major works include Schilderkonst (mixed ensembles, 2003-4), TIDE (ensemble and electronics, 2007-10), the South London Harmonies series (for various ensembles, 2008-11), Mala punica/Walled Garden (eight voices and six instruments, 2008-9/2015), The Freedom of the Earth (chorus and instruments, 2011), Three Trios (piano trio and tapes, 2010-11), Radical Road (voices with stones, 2014) and Primo Libro (6 voices, 2012-16).
Current projects (January 2018) include a new string quartet for Quatuor Bozzini, a choral installation for experimental vocal collective Musarc, and an ongoing series of pieces for CoMA (Contemporary Music for All), with whom he has been closely associated since 2014. He has also recently edited the CoMA Partsong Book, a volume of new experimental music for small vocal groups, published in March 2018.
In 2002 he founded EXAUDI with soprano Juliet Fraser, now regarded as one of the world’s leading vocal ensembles for new music. As well as maintaining a busy international touring and recording schedule with EXAUDI, he is in great demand as a guest conductor, working regularly with instrumental ensembles and orchestras such as Royal Northern Sinfonia, BBCSSO, London Sinfonietta, musikFabrik, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and L’Instant Donné. He has also worked extensively with amateur musicians, both at CoMA and in early music fora and summer schools around the UK. He was Musical Director of New London Chamber Choir and Orlando Chamber Choir (London) from 2007-2011.
He is also active as a writer on new music, and occasionally appears as a pianist. In 2006 he co-founded the ensemble Kürbis with the composer Claudia Molitor, dedicated to the performance of contemporary and experimental chamber music.
He studied composition with Michael Finnissy, and was awarded a PhD in Composition from the University of Southampton in 2005. Previously Associate Head of Composition at the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London from 2012-17, he took up the post of Associate Professor of Composition at Durham University in October 2017.