Ryan Wigglesworth conducts Schnittke, Siem, and Mozart — With Roman Simovic and Carmine Lauri

London Symphony Orchestra

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Roman Simović — Violinist

Carmine Lauri — Violinist

London Symphony Orchestra

Ryan Wigglesworth — Conductor

Program notes

The celebrated Ryan Wigglesworth leads the London Symphony Orchestra, alongside top-notch soloists Roman Simovic and Carmine Lauri, in a vibrant, varied program featuring Schnittke’s Concerto Grosso No. 1, Ojos del Cielo by contemporary British-Norwegian composer Sasha Siem, and Mozart’s “Jupiter” Symphony No. 41.  

Composed in 1976–1977, Schnittke’s polystylistic Concerto Grosso No. 1 weaves together atonal and quasi-Baroque elements with motifs from his celebrated cartoon film music. Dissonant tone clusters contrast with hauntingly beautiful passages of withheld sound, as the soloists (two violins, harpsichord, and prepared piano) engage in an intensive dialogue with the chamber orchestra. The first of Schnittke's six Concerti Grossi, this eclectic composition is thought to have marked the composer’s breakthrough in the West. 

Sasha Siem’s (1984-present) orchestral composition Ojos del Cielo was first workshopped in 2008, when she was a participant in the LSO Panufnik Composers Scheme. Exhibiting an innovative style and natural resonance, the piece centers on the suppression of emotional expression—with its title translating as “Sky Eyes”, an idiom denoting “the eyes of a person who is absent or no longer here”. The concert concludes with Mozart’s last and longest symphony, often regarded as one of the best in history—the sensational Symphony No. 41, nicknamed “Jupiter”!

A closer look: composers and works

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