Marin Alsop, Conductor
Anna Clyne, Night Ferry
Shostakovich, Symphony No. 5
Renowned conductor Marin Alsop visits New Zealand for the first time. A ground-breaking role model for 21st-century conductors worldwide, Alsop is capable of inspiring an orchestra to give “a life-changing performance” and is praised by the New York Times as a “formidable musician and a powerful communicator.”
Alsop conducts Anna Clyne’s Night Ferry and Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony, which both represent extremes. Night Ferry was inspired by Schubert’s and poet Robert Lowell’s struggles with bipolar disorder, charting the stormy voyages between the highs and lows of this illness.
Shostakovich’s Fifth was received rapturously by both the Soviet government and the public. Officials saw it as Shostakovich finally toeing the party line after falling dangerously out of favour in 1936. For the public, however, it was a raw expression of misery forced upon them by Stalin. Whether Shostakovich meant it as a government-approved work of obedience or an anguished cry from the heart of the people, its emotional power is without question.