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Killius - Zehetmair - Royal Northern Sinfonia


Release Date: February 10, 2023

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1 John Casken: That Subtle Knot - Double Concerto for Violin, Viola and Orchestra - calm  
2 floating  
3 Bela Bartok: Concerto for Viola and Orchestra Sz. 120 - Moderato  
4 Adagio religioso - Allegretto  
5 Allegro vivace  
6 Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 5 c-minor op. 67 - Allegro con brio  
7 Andante con moto  
8 Allegro  
9 Allegro  
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This New Series album represents a summing up of Thomas Zehetmair’s work with Britain’s Royal Northern Sinfonia, described by the Austrian-born violinist and conductor, at the time of its recording, as “a résumé and a departure”.  In his 12 years as Music Director of the British chamber orchestra, Zehetmair was noted both for bringing compelling new music into the repertoire and for insightful performances of classical and modern composition.

The album includes the premiere recording of British composer John Casken’s That Subtle Knot, written in 2012-3 for Zehetmair, Ruth Killius and the Northern Sinfonia. Inspired by the poetry of John Donne, the composition establishes a broad arc between the English Renaissance and music of today, paints portraits of the dedicatees, and draws influence, too, from the rugged landscapes of the North of England.  The title of the piece comes from Donne’s poem The Ecstasy. The poem focuses upon two lovers sitting on a riverbank, hands entwined: “Our eye beams twisted and did thread / Our eyes upon one double string.” The image seemed to John Casken perfect for a double concerto for viola and violin.

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