Shepherd’s new work for solo cello, choirs, and orchestra—setting poetry by renowned German poet Ulla Hahn—premieres at Carnegie Hall in April.
On April 22, Sean Shepherd’s On a Clear Day (An einem klaren Tag) receives its world premiere at Carnegie Hall, with conductor Kent Nagano, cellist Jan Vogler, the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra, and a choir of young singers from around the world. Following the world premiere, On a Clear Day will travel to Hamburg for its European premiere on April 28-30 at the Elbphilharmonie, then onto the Dresden Music Festival on May 5.
> April 22: Sean Shepherd, On a Clear Day (world premiere)
The entire project—commissioned by the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra and the Dresden Music Festival—is international in scope, from the members of the creative team to the young singers (ages 11-27), comprising members of the Alsterspatzen Hamburg (the children’s choir of the Hamburg State Opera), the Audi Jugendchorakademie, soloists of the Dresden Kreuzchor, The Young ClassX Ensemble, and the Young New Yorkers’ Chorus. They will spend the week in New York rehearsing and making music together, culminating in the performance and world premiere.
For this monumental 40-minute work, Shepherd sets texts from a cycle of 11 poems by renowned German writer Ulla Hahn, in addition to one poem by Walt Whitman, exploring the idea of reaching across cultures, languages, country boundaries to unite in taking care of each other and the world we live in.
“To me, the message that Ulla Hahn's poetic words convey is simple and deeply resonant for this moment in our collective re-emergence. It's a plea for compassion toward our fellow human; it's a plea for awareness and action regarding our surroundings. And it's a reminder that while the challenges we face are sprawling, complex and ongoing, our strength lies not just in working together, but in being together. This project, with Ulla, Jan and Kent as full creative partners and collaborators, has been hugely fulfilling and joyful for me. Ulla's message brings me hope, and for that I'm grateful.”
Nagano and the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra will also be performing Brahms’s Schicksalslied and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8.
Saturday, April 22 at 7:30pm
Carnegie Hall | New York
Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra
Members of Hamburger Alsterspatzen
Soloists of Kreuzchor Dresden
Young ClassX Ensemble
Young New Yorkers' Chorus
Jan Vogler, Cello
Kent Nagano, Conductor
JOHANNES BRAHMS Schicksalslied
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 8
SEAN SHEPHERD On a Clear Day (World Premiere)
> Further information on Work: On a Clear Day
Photo: Jennifer Taylor
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