In the run-up to Independence Day, we celebrate the founding father of American classical music with two glorious, melody-filled works by Aaron Copland.
David Brophy returns to the podium for Appalachian Spring, with Matthew Billing, the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra’s Principal Clarinet, taking centre-stage for the jazz-accented Clarinet Concerto.
Composed for the choreographer Martha Graham in 1944, Appalachian Spring won Copland a Pulitzer Prize. Despite slender resources of just 13 instruments, it evokes an emotional world as vast and vital as the landscape stretching through 13 American States that gives the work its title.
A mythic and magnificent portrait of life being forged on the frontier, it also feels homespun and heartfelt. Memorably woven through the infectious twang of country fiddles and vibrant square dances is the traditional Shaker melody Simple Gift. The result is a piece that is by turns playful, proud, passionate and powerful.
Commissioned by the jazz icon Benny Goodman, the Concerto is a dazzling jazz-classical showcase for orchestra and clarinet with Copland at his most picturesque and poetic. Its haunting, quiet beauty is matched by a thrilling vitality bursting with love and life.
National Concert Hall
National Concert Hall, Earlsfort Terrace, IrelandOpen Larger Map