NATIONAL YOUTH ORCHESTRA OF GREAT BRITAIN (NYO) ANNOUNCES SPRING RESIDENCY

SHEKU KANNEH-MASON GIVES FIRST UK PERFORMANCE OF SHOSTAKOVICH CELLO CONCERTO NO 1 SINCE WINNING BBC YOUNG MUSICIAN OF THE YEAR CARLOS MIGUEL PRIETO MAKES NYO DEBUT

CONCERTS IN LEEDS AND LONDON

This Spring NYO welcomes cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason and Mexican conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto to their residency, which will culminate in concert performances in Leeds (8 April) and London (9 April). Repertoire includes rare performance of The Night of the Mayas by Silvestre Revueltas. The London performance at the Barbican will be broadcast online by Boiler Room.

Described as ‘just what classical music needs’ by The Guardian, Sheku Kanneh-Mason won a standing ovation for his performance of the Shostakovich Cello Concerto No 1 when he won the final of the 2016 BBC Young Musician of the Year. Sheku, who is seventeen and attends a state school in Nottingham, will perform this powerful piece with his peers, NYO musicians with an average age of sixteen.

“Studying classical music is a fantastic way to develop skills like concentration, focus, selfdiscipline, and learning the huge benefits of hard work. It is also great fun and it allows you to meet and collaborate with a lot of interesting people. Young people should - and do - care about this music because it holds such a depth of emotional meaning and it's intellectually challenging. I can't wait to join NYO this Spring for such a colourful and dramatic programme of music: it will be a very special and inspiring event.” Sheku Kanneh-Mason – Winner of BBC Young Musician 2016

“We will play two of Shostakovich’s most epic works, both forged from the emotional instability and real physical uncertainties of Stalin’s rule. In the symphony we will be utterly absorbed by the brave defiance, parody, bitter humour and deeply sad melodies of the music. We will commit to communicate every note that Shostakovich wrote through fresh and open minds, putting ourselves in his shoes and living the experience imaginatively and emotionally.” Leora Cohen, Leader NYO

“Sheku is a game-changer for classical music. Not only does he represent teenage brilliance, he has the ability to capture the imagination of all audiences, to communicate with his peers, and to show the world just how much young people can achieve. When NYO comes together this Spring we will be challenging our young musicians to engage with the music from a different political era, but that resonates down the generations by challenging the status quo. We’re also delighted to welcome Carlos Miguel Prieto to make his debut with us.” Sarah Alexander, Chief Executive and Artistic Director, NYO

Known for championing Latin American music, Carlos Miguel Prieto will conduct the suite by Silvestre Revueltas from the film soundtrack Night of the Mayas alongside the two works by Shostakovich. In the 1939 film, a tribe of Mayans clash with western modern life through their interactions with an adventurer-scientist), and it ends in tragedy. Prieto is Music Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de México, and works extensively with orchestras in North America, including Cleveland, Detroit and Chicago Symphonies. As Music Director of the Louisiana Philharmonic he has led the cultural renewal of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina and overseen the triumphant return of the orchestra to its home, the Orpheum Theater. Since 2002, alongside Gustavo Dudamel, he has conducted the Youth Orchestra of the Americas, becoming its Music Director in 2011.

Venezuelan percussionist Francisco Piñero, Simon Bolivar Conservatory graduate and Youth Orchestra of the Americas alumni, will join the NYO team as a specialist tutor to work with an enlarged NYO percussion section for The Night of the Mayas. This extraordinary piece calls for an array of instruments including bongos, tom-toms, rattles, guiros, conch shells and log drums.

 

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