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Daniel Barenboim's 75th birthday concert in Berlin included the world premiere of Johannes Boris Borowski's Stretta, with the maestro as concerto soloist.

Daniel Barenboim celebrated his 75th birthday with a new piano concerto by Johannes Boris Borowski. The maestro was at the keyboard for the 20-minute score entitled Stretta, with the Berlin Staatskapelle conducted by Zubin Mehta. The new Borowski commission follows that of Encore, premiered under Barenboim’s baton in May within opening events at the Boulez Concert Hall of the Barenboim-Said Akademie in Berlin.

Reviewing Stretta, the Berliner Morgenpost observed that "there’s no doubting the composer has used all the shades of colour this orchestra is capable of, as well as each instrumental group’s potential for sonic and gestural attack."

"His compositional understanding is what distinguishes Stretta, as demonstrated by the rich percussion writing right up to a wind machine. Playfulness, tradition and the grotesque lead to a meditative soliloquy for the piano".
Der Tagesspiegel

"Borowski’s 20-minute piece sometimes sounds filigree, sometimes violent – it chuckles, sings, bubbles up, cries out and coalesces once again… The calm central point is the piano from which, with runs, trills and powerfully concentrated single notes, Barenboim intervenes in the action, sometimes jumping up like a jazz pianist from his stool."
Der Neue Merker

Borowski’s next premiere is a new 15-minute trio for clarinet, cello and piano, entitled As If and commissioned by SWR for the ECLAT festival of new music in Stuttgart. The world premiere by Trio Catch on 3 February is followed by further performances over the coming year in Zürich, Lübeck, Villach and St Gallen.

>  Further information on Work: Stretta

Photo: Priska Ketterer

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