Saturday, 18 May 19:30, Sheldonian Theatre, Oxford

Krzysztof Penderecki | Adagio for String Orchestra from Symphony No. 3 | Viola Concerto | Serenade for String Orchestra | Concertino for Trumpet and Orchestra UK PREMIERE

On Saturday 18 May, the Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra celebrate Krzysztof Penderecki’s 85th Birthday in Oxford’s Sheldonian Theatre, performing works including his Viola Concerto with the Orchestra’s own concertmaster Yuri Zhislin, and the UK premiere of his Concertino for Trumpet and Orchestra, with soloist Gábor Boldoczki. The concert will be conducted by Maestro Penderecki’s Assistant Conductor, Maciej Tworek.

Multi-award winning Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki is one of the most distinguished musicians of his generation. Works including his Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima, St Luke Passion, Cello Concerto no. 2, Polish Requiem, Violin Concerto no. 2, and the Double Concerto are now considered masterworks of our time. Named ‘Poland’s greatest living composer’ by The Guardian, Penderecki has written for musicians including Anne-Sophie Mutter and Janine Jansen, and is a recipient of the Commander’s Cross, Prix Italia, and five Grammy Awards. Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra’s concertmaster Yuri Zhislin is the soloist in Penderecki’s Viola Concerto, which incorporates a broad range of musical techniques into a taut and compact time-span. Yuri Zhislin has a personal connection to the piece: his father Grigori Zhislin gave the premiere of the Viola Concerto in its chamber orchestration in 1985, with the composer at the podium. Penderecki remained lifelong friends with Grigori Zhislin.

In a stringed instrument you can always find something different. A new sound. It’s like the human voice, and every good player is different. There is really no limit. - Krzysztof Penderecki

Gábor Boldoczki gives the UK premiere of Penderecki’s Concertino for Trumpet and Orchestra, written for the trumpeter in 2015. The Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra also perform the Adagio for String Orchestra from Penderecki’s Symphony No. 3 and his Serenade for String Orchestra.

Krzysztof Penderecki’s 85th Birthday concert falls in a busy period for the Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra, which celebrates Leonardo da Vinci’s 500th anniversary by premiering a new commission – Codex – by Manuel Martínez Burgos alongside Respighi’s Three Botticelli Pictures on 11 May and unearths Schumann’s Violin Concerto with Alena Baeva on 1 June.


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