6th First Night subscription concert
Works by Schumann, Barry and Elgar
»If you want to know who I consider to be the most important living composer, then I will say without hesitation: Elgar«. Great words from Fritz Kreisler, the legendary violinist. He is of course referring to Edward William Elgar, who singlehandedly put Great Britain back on the international musical map after its interminably long absence. As a composer, Elgar was self-taught. His breakthrough came in London with his ›Enigma Variations‹ in 1899. »I have greatly enjoyed the Enigma Variations because I have subtitled them with the nicknames of a number of special friends«. A spontaneous work not written to a commission, the variations are composed as a sequence of musical miniatures. As a Brit and as a veritable all-rounder, Duncan Ward is the ideal choice. At the age of only 12 Ward had already composed his first schoolboy musical and later he became the first conductor in the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra Academy. Since his first appearance here in 2015, he has become a regular and welcome guest with The Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen.
As part of this project, Gerald Barry’s ›Organ Concerto‹ will be premiered at the Cologne concert. Here, the composer discusses his work.