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On the Horizon: Tod Machover's City Symphonies

(June 2015)

Premieres by Tod Machover are coming up in Lucerne and Detroit.

With the upcoming premieres of works in Lucerne and Detroit, composer Tod Machover has a lot to look forward to. As the composer-in-residence for the 2015 Lucerne Festival, he’s busy composing the next installment in his series of works written specifically for cities across the globe, and this Symphony for Lucerne is proving to be one of his most ambitious yet. The piece will receive its world premiere 5 September by the Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra conducted by Matthias Pintscher.

A Symphony for Lucerne is a snapshot of the life and sounds of the historic Swiss city. By inviting the people of Lucerne to record sounds from everyday life, Machover will take inspiration from the submissions to compose a unique symphonic work. In the fashion of his previous city-symphony works, A Symphony for Lucerne is a collaborative effort between Machover and the people of Lucerne to produce a work of art that is both representative of and informed by the city’s life and culture.

To find out more about A Symphony for Lucerne and listen to audio submissions, click here.

Also at the Lucerne Festival, Machover’s Fensadense—a work for hyperinstruments and interactive electronics—will receive its world premiere 12 September by the Lucerne Festival Young Performance, directed by Shila Aanaraki. But before either of these works receive their premieres, Machover’s Re-Structures for two pianos and live electronics—an homage to Pierre Boulez in his 90th birthday year—will get its first performance 23 August.

After Lucerne gets its symphony, Detroit is next on the list. Machover’s Symphony in D will receive its world premiere performances 20–21 November by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin. Like his previous city-symphony projects, Symphony in D is a collaborative work that will make use of the sounds of Detroit to paint a picture of the city. A smartphone app is available for download, making it easier to submit sounds for the project.

To find out more about Symphony in D, click here.

Photo: Priska Ketterer

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