Kremerata Baltica is in Birmingham, UK for a Weinberg Weekend!

We are going to perform three exciting concerts focused on and around of music of Mieczysław Weinberg.

Called by Shostakovitch “one of the most outstanding composers of today”, Weinberg is still relatively little known to the audience. Gidon Kremer and Kremerata Baltica are among the foremost pioneers of this great composer. We are coming to Birmingham, UK where we are going to join forces with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and their Music Director, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla to give the UK premiere of Weinberg’s Symphony No. 21 “Kaddish”, dedicated “To the victims of the Warsaw ghetto”.

Two other concerts would feature a performance of the “Preludes to a Lost Time (Imaginary Dialogues)” and the concert of Kremerata Baltica with the soloists Gidon Kremer and Georgijs Osokins.

“Preludes to a Lost Time” is a multimedia project that combines two different forms of art – music and photography. Weinberg’s “24 Preludes for Solo Cello” transcribed by Gidon Kremer for solo violin are performed along with the projections of the works by a Lithuanian photographer Antanas Sutkus. Both artists explore the realities of their time. “The juxtaposition of a visual and an auditory art form allows new insights in a bygone era, whose legacy has faded but not entirely disappeared. Simultaneously, it is a work of the present. It is thus a testimony to the longevity of higher thought and, indeed, of art itself” says Gidon Kremer in his comments to this project.

The program for our concert in the Town Hall would propose another UK premiere – the “Chaconne” by J. S. Bach, arranged for piano by Ferruccio Busoni, in transcription for string orchestra by Gidon Kremer. To play a piece that was written for one person with the orchestra of 24 musicians can be challenging but it also gives an opportunity for every voice of this music to come through and be heard in its full glory.

The Weinberg’s “Concertino for violin and string orchestra”, op. 42 is going to be followed by a project created by Gidon Kremer “Schubert meets Silvestrov”.

It was the idea of the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov to play his pieces for violin and piano, dedicated to Gidon Kremer in alteration with the music of Franz Schubert (during this concert we are going to perform “Five Minuets and Six Trios”, D89). The symbioses between the two cycles forms the third, separate, piece. “There are many different voices here:” says our soloist Georgijs Osokins, “the voice of the piano; violin; orchestra; silence and voice of the world that response to it. The result is very interesting – the two composers meet here in an interesting conversation. Gidon, who plays all the pieces, becomes a key chain that connects the story lines. The project is wonderful, and I am very happy to be a part of it”.