Fri, Mar 08 | Temppeliaukion Church

War and the Woman

Ernst Bloch: Concerto Grosso No. 1, Doreen Carwithen: Concerto for Piano and Strings, Arthur Honegger: Symphony No.2. Martin Malmgren, piano | James Kahane, conductor.
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Time & Place / Aika ja paikka

Mar 08, 2019, 7:00 PM
Temppeliaukion Church, Lutherinkatu 3, 00100 Helsinki, Finland

Details / Lisätietoja

80 years ago, the world exploded. Nazis swept East through Poland before briefly turning their attention West as the Soviets charged in to Finland and Poland. Soon, nearly every nation on the globe was at war, shattering the world order and changing the course of history forever.

Art has always reflected the world around it, and World War Two was no exception. Composers fled their homes, fought on the fronts, and died in concentration camps. Compositions were interrupted, and lives were altered. For this inaugural program, the Helsinki Chamber Orchestra selected three works that represent the so-called “neo-tonal” composers of the time, one from before the war, one interrupted by it, and one from a few years after its conclusion. The program begins with Ernest Bloch’s prewar Concerto Grosso no. 1, explosive but reflective of the fragile peace the world had landed in after the first world war. Then comes the Finnish premiere of Doreen Carwithen’s Concerto for Piano and Strings. Written a few years after the end of World War Two by a survivor of the London Blitz, the piece also serves as our offering to the celebration of International Women’s Day: a powerful piece by a brilliant and forgotten woman. After the intermission, Honegger’s Second Symphony. Interrupted by the war, the work was premiered in 1942 in neutral Switzerland, and ends with a chorale that offers just a whisper of hope for a bright future after a dramatic and oppressive three movements. Three pieces, different in character, but deeply reflective of their time.

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