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The wonderful musical partnership between the celebrated maestro Pierre Boulez and the Wiener Philharmoniker began in 1962. In this concert at the 1992 Salzburg Festival, Boulez leads them in some of his favorite repertoire: Stravinsky, Debussy, Bartók paired with works of his own composition. True to his maxim that “a work should be renewed at every performance”, Boulez and the orchestra present daring musical interpretations that bring this brilliant 20th century program to life!
Stravinsky’s Tone Poem "The Song of the Nightingale", based on his opera of the same name, opens this eclectic concert. Its 1919 premiere was surrounded by controversy similar to his epochal Rite of Spring. Debussy’s Nocturnes Three Nocturnes “Nuages”, “Fêtes”, and “Sirènes” follow, works inspired by James Whistler’s eponymous paintings. Boulez’s Livre pour cordes derives from a work conceived for string quartet and composed over the course of two decades. The program closes with the ballet suite of Bartók’s The Miraculous Mandarin, Sz. 73, a strikingly vivid piece that tells a dark story with a few whimsical twists.