In September, cellist Yo-Yo Ma and composer-clarinetist Paquito D’Rivera join the National Symphony Orchestra and conductor José Luis Gomez for the world premiere of D’Rivera’s The Journey.
Acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma and composer-clarinetist Paquito D’Rivera team up to give the world premiere of D’Rivera’s new double concerto The Journey on September 8 with the National Symphony Orchestra and conductor José Luis Gomez. The Journey will be presented at Wolf Trap in Virginia alongside D’Rivera’s The Elephant and the Clown for orchestra, plus other works by Gershwin, Márquez, and Bernstein.
> Sep 8: The Journey (WORLD PREMIERE), Yo-Yo Ma, cello / Paquito D’Rivera, clarinet / National Symphony Orchestra / José Luis Gomez
The Journey, a piece in three movements for clarinet, cello, and orchestra, celebrates D'Rivera's artistic and personal relationship with Yo-Yo Ma, while also embracing his memories of growing up in culturally diverse Cuba. The work features a small “combo” comprising the solo cellist and clarinet, piano, erhu, and percussionist, surrounded by the symphony.
D’Rivera describes his childhood memories that inspired the music:
“As a kid, my parents used to take us to a picturesque restaurant in Havana’s Chinatown called “El Pacífico,” on the top floor of a building where a few different Chinese cultural societies used to gather. So I remember that while ascending on that tiny, cage-like elevator, mixed with the aroma of orchids, Jasmine rice with black beans and the laundry parlor downstairs, we could hear different groups of Chinese musicians rehearsing together, performing on traditional instruments. The nostalgic sound of the Erhu always attracted my attention and forever stayed in my mind. Many years later, when I wrote this concerto, I took the opportunity to use—on the second and third movements—the mystical sounds of this Chinese string instrument to blend with Jazz elements as well as with melodies, harmonies and rhythmic cells from Brasil and the Afro-Cuban traditions.”
> Listen to “Rice,” the second movement of The Journey
Thursday, September 8 at 8pm ET
Wolf Trap, Filene Center
National Symphony Orchestra
José Luis Gomez, conductor
Yo-Yo Ma, Cello
Paquito D’Rivera, Clarinet
D’RIVERA The Elephant and the Clown
D’RIVERA The Journey (WORLD PREMIERE)
GERSHWIN Cuban Overture
MARQUEZ Danzon No. 2
BERNSTEIN Symphonic Dances from West Side Story
> Further information on Work: The Journey
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