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Alexander Shelley and the NAC Orchestra © Rémi Thériault

Truth in Our Times

NAC Orchestra at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage

Alexander Shelley and the NAC Orchestra © Rémi Thériault
Special Events Music Classical music
  • Nicole Lizée Zeiss After Dark: SESQUIE for Canada’s 150th
  • Korngold Violin Concerto
  • Shostakovich Symphony No. 9
  • Philip Glass New Work (Title tba)

The April 28, 2021 concert program at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage will open with Canadian composer Nicole Lizée’s Zeiss after Dark which evokes the cinematographic effect of the Zeiss lens used to film intimate scenes lit only by candles. The piece will initiate the audience to the program’s theme through a contemplation of perspectives and filters.

It will be followed by two works that speak to the idea of freedom of speech, disruption and politics: Korngold’s Violin Concerto and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 9. Austrian-Jewish composer Erich Korngold fled to the United States during World War II where he stood staunchly against oppression and became an influential composer for Hollywood films. James Ehnes will perform his Violin Concerto, a victorious response to the fall of the Nazi regime that also marked the return of Korngold’s music to the concert hall.

In another act of defiance, Shostakovich’s Symphony No 9. was not the grand work celebrating Stalin’s regime that the dictatorship had expected. Instead, Shostakovich took a subversive, satirical approach, delivering a spirited work filled with humour rather than heroism. The undercurrent of disruption was noted and the work was banned for the rest of Stalin’s life.

The program will conclude with the U.S. premiere performance of a new orchestral work by internationally renowned composer Philip Glass. Commissioned by the NAC Orchestra on the theme of Truth in our Times, this work will be a tribute to renowned Canadian-born journalist and ABC news anchor Peter Jennings who was a trustee of Carnegie Hall during his years in NYC. Peter Jennings also championed Canadian artists and became the founding director of the American chapter of the Friends of the NAC Orchestra.

Alexander Shelley and the NAC Orchestra © Rémi Thériault
Philip Glass
James Ehnes © B. Ealovega
Nicole Lizée © Murray Lightburn