The BBC Philharmonic will give the premiere of Ailís Ní Ríain’s new work for symphony orchestra The Land Grows Weary of its Own at Manchester International Festival 2023.
New music inspired by the climate crisis. ‘The deepest past and the distant future are written in the rocks beneath our feet.’ Performed by the BBC Philharmonic and conducted by Vimbayi Kaziboni.
A world premiere from Grammy Award-winning composer John Luther Adams, Prophecies of Stone looks to Arctic landscapes and the sonic geography they conjure up. Journey through mountainous terrain in this atmospheric piece brought to life across four movements by solo pianist Ralph Van Raat and the BBC Philharmonic.
A Spell for Creation by Alissa Firsova explores the interconnectedness of the natural world, with a contralto soloist taking centre stage. Composer and writer Ailís Ní Ríain also considers environmental awareness through a new composition, The Land Grows Weary of its Own.
Conducted by Vimbayi Kaziboni and performed with the BBC Philharmonic at Manchester’s iconic The Bridgewater Hall, expect to soar through soundscapes that remind us of our place in nature.
The Land Grows Weary of its Own is co-commissioned by BBC Philharmonic, Factory International and National Symphony Orchestra, Ireland.
“Each piece engaged in some way with the natural environment. The standout work was by Irish composer Ailís Ní Ríain. The Land Grows Weary of its Own did much to capture the environmental unease present this summer (according to the UN, the week ending 7th July was the hottest on record). The piece is concerned with birdsong, but Ní Ríain is deaf/hard of hearing. With birdsong not within the composer’s audible range, the music imagines what birdsong is like – in an additional context of ever-increasing pressure from destruction of habitats and global heating.
After beginning with rich, dissonant glissandi in brass and strings, and almost naïve melodies in the flutes, the music eventually fragments. Repeated tolling from a bell plate leads to a culminating layered glissando across the whole orchestra, a kind of sonic decay unlike almost anything I have heard. Concluding with bird call whistles played by musicians throughout the orchestra, the piece was greatly emotionally affecting.”
Lawrence Dunn, Bachtrack