Sunday 20 Nov 2022, 5pm

The Bradshaw Hall, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

Pre-concert talk, 4pm, The Lab Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

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On 20 November we present 3 great American Composers, and one of our favourite locals, with music discussing the American dream, the media built around it, and in turn a failed utopia.

The American dream, coined in the 1930’s, was the belief that anyone, regardless of background, can be a limitless success. In reality, this idea fast became a way for companies to sell products to hopefuls who were desperate for the unattainable lifestyle promised to them.

Hear the new piece Breaking by George Lewis, likened to long exposure photography through music, next to Elliott Carter’s The American Sublime. 

"We’re in a position where if we are at ease we’re a little crazy, you know? We’re just whistling in the dark, as they say, and so Breaking has that sensibility about it. Things are kind of breaking. What does it sound like in the music? I went back to a methodology I haven’t visited since 2013, the idea of having integral repetition in the pieces. The idea is that the flow of things is broken, but also sustained. There’s a sense of instability I’m trying to maintain, a subliminal psychological sense where people shouldn’t feel complacent listening to this music, they should feel a little bit like where are things going? Where am I?"  

Art inspires art, and at BCMG we believe in combining our senses for new experiences, expect to see a very special merchandise drop around this wonderful event.

We’re grateful for the support of The Amphion Foundation which has given us the opportunity to feature works by Elliott Carter and George Lewis in this series of concerts.


Anna Dennis Soprano

Paul Carey Jones Baritone

Stephan Meier Conductor


 Katherine Balch, b. 1991, New Geometry (2015, 9’)

Julian Anderson, b. 1967,

Tombeau, Sound Investment commission (2018, 4’)

Nunca vi Granada, World Premiere, Sound Investment commission (2022, 5’)

Elliott Carter, 1908 – 2012,  What Are Years for soprano and chamber ensemble (2009, 12’) Five Poems of Marianne Moore




Elliott Carter, 1908 – 2012 The American Sublime (2011, 14’) 

for baritone and ensemble, texts by Wallace Stevens, supported by the Amphion Foundation

George Lewis, b. 1952, Breaking, Sound Investment co-commission, UK premiere (2022, 14') supported by Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.



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