‘Boulez enthrals South Bank audience in London’

‘He is the most influential composer of the second half of the 20th Century and at 86 Pierre Boulez is still writing new works.’

Last weekend we celebrated the miraculous beauty of Pierre Boulez’s music with Resident Orchestra London Sinfonietta, Artistic Advisor pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Royal Academy of Music and the man himself with his Ensemble intercontemporain.

The BBC’s correspondent Alexander Kan was there to watch / Watch exclusive interviews and clips from the festival >>

Come down to Southbank Centre this weekend and try some Boulez

This weekend we celebrate the music of Pierre Boulez. Boulez’s music fuses scientific precision with gorgeous, fluid sound. Boulez himself comments that ‘creation must express a certain transcendence’. He explains that ‘For me a musical idea is like a seed which you plant in compost, and suddenly it begins to proliferate like a weed.’

 

The festival kicks off tonight with the Royal Academy of Music performing two versions of the same work, which illustrate how Boulez’s music has evolved across the years.

 

 

London Sinfonietta presents a concert of electronic music with Sound Intermedia on Saturday night in Queen Elizabeth Hall. Hear almost all of Boulez’s piano works performed by Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Tamara Stefanovich on Sunday.

The weekend draws to a close when Boulez in person where he conducts his masterpiece Pli selon pli with soprano Barbara Hannigan, Ensemble intercontemporain and the Lucerne Festival Academy Ensemble. 

 

Pierre-Laurent Aimard plays Ravel

Pierre-Laurent Aimard

Pierre-Laurent Aimard is a pianist who refuses to be pigeon-holed. He can be playing Beethoven one night and a world premiere the next and yet he brings the same clarity of vision to both performances.

In his International Piano Series recital tonight he will be demonstrating this remarkable versatility in a programme including music by Beethoven, Chopin, Ravel and George Benjamin. Aimard and Benjamin have been friends for many years, since the time of Benjamin’s studies with Messiaen and later with Boulez’s Ensemble InterContemporain.  Tonight’s performance of Benjamin’s Fantasy on Iambic Rhythm comes by way of a 50th birthday tribute to the composer.

Aimard reunites with Boulez once again in his latest disc for Deutsche Grammophon. Alongside the Ravel piano concertos the recording includes Ravel’s Miroirs which he will play in his recital and which has just been given a four star review by Audiophile magazine. 

If you enjoy the performance then you will be able to buy the CD after the recital and get it signed by the artist!

Tracy Lees