Guest appearance at the Grafenegg Festival
Lili Boulanger (1893 – 1918)
D’un matin de printemps
Richard Strauss (1864 – 1949)
Four Last Songs
Pjotr Iljitsch Tschaikowsky (1840 – 1893)
Symphony No.6 in B minor Op. 74 Pathétique
She was the first woman to win the coveted “Prix de Rome”. What other marvels might the French composer Lili Boulanger have given the world of music had she not died in 1918 at the age of only 24? Michael Sanderling commemorates this highly talented composer with the delicate tone poem “D’un matin de printemps”. He goes on to conduct two works of farewell, beginning with Richard Strauss’s “Four Last Songs”, the composer’s headily beautiful swan song to Romantic music. The weightless melismas and jubilant flights of fancy of the solo part are sung by Joyce El-Khoury. Born in Lebanon, she is also involved in humanitarian and educational work on behalf of her home country. After the interval, we hear Tchaikovsky’s famous “Pathétique”, which fades out at the end like a musical demise. It is macabre that the composer actually died of cholera, maybe even having deliberately infected himself, only a few days after the premiere. “Tchaikovsky was a torn personality who never really found his place in society,” Sanderling believes, and he celebrates the Sixth as a moving requiem.