Jaime Martín, conductor
Anna Devin, soprano
Rafał Tomkiewicz, countertenor
Samuel Dale Johnson, baritone
National Symphony Chorus
Cór na nÓg
Lili Boulanger Psalm 129, Ils m’ont assez opprimé dès ma jeunesse
Ravel Ma mère L’Oye (Mother Goose)
Orff Carmina Burana
On Saturday 26 November, the National Symphony Orchestra makes a long awaited and quite spectacular return to Waterford and to the Symphony Club of Waterford season with a programme which ranges from the Middle Ages to the nursery to the secrets of the heart with the mesmerising medieval choral fantasy Carmina Burana, a delightful ballet on fairy tales, and a movingly intimate response to illness. With Chief Conductor Jaime Martín at the helm, this is one not to be missed.
The National Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Cór na nÓg, and Chief Conductor Jaime Martín come together for Carl Orff’s epic Carmina Burana with the ‘full, rounded and sumptuous’ (MusicOMH) soprano of Anna Devin, the ‘sparkle and verve’ (La Libre) of countertenor Rafał Tomkiewicz, and the ‘powerful, melodious baritone’ (Online Merker) of Samuel Dale Johnson.
With its ominous, elemental ‘O Fortuna’ – soundtrack to countless films and television advertisements – Orff’s setting of texts from the 11th to the 13th centuries in Latin and antique German and French is a cantata like no other. Fate lurks menacingly in the corners and shadows of its rousing portraits of Spring, the Tavern, and the Court of Love, the result a spectacular fusion of past and present.
A rising star of French music before her death, aged 24, the devoutly Catholic Lili Boulanger’s Psalm 129, Ils m’ont assez opprimé dès ma jeunesse (They have oppressed me since I was young), for chorus and orchestra is a heartfelt response to her long history of illness. Blending straightforward melodies with adventurous harmonic accompaniment, its stark anguish is lit up by moments of baleful beauty.
Drenched in fantastical atmospheres couched with Classical elegance, the colourful spontaneity of jazz, the warmth of Spanish music and the exotic musical accents of the Far East, Ravel’s charming and colourful ballet Ma mère L’Oye brings a roll-call of familiar fairy-tale characters to life in a score as vivacious as it is enchanting.