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Sunday 10 May 2020, 4pm
Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, London, SE1 8XX

If Edgard Varèse’s mind-bending music sounded extraordinary in the 1920s, then it is just as stunning today. Dreaming of new sounds – of electronic music – a generation before it was technically possible, his coining of the term “organised sound” reflects his unique vision of “sound as living matter”, integrating a fluidity of electronics and instruments to emphasise the openness of musical space. With titles such as Intégrales, Ionisation, Hyperprism and Déserts speaking of an increasingly prevalent machine age, the reflexively ambitious composer’s use of new instruments and electronic resources led to his being known as the “Father of Electronic Music”, described by Henry Miller as “The stratospheric Colossus of Sound”.

NEXT Musicians Side-by-Side
Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla and Jaume Santonja Espinós Conductors

Varèse Density 21.5 for solo flute; Ionisation for 13 percussionists; Intégrales for wind & percussion
Rebecca Saunders a visible trace for ensemble
Debussy Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune; Syrinx for solo flute
Grisey Stèle for 2 percussionists
Varèse Déserts for wind, piano, percussion & tape