Andris Nelsons conducts Gubaidulina and Shostakovich
Boston Symphony Orchestra
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The Russian-born Sofia Gubaidulina, acclaimed as one of the most significant composers in the world today, was encouraged in her career early on by Dmitri Shostakovich. She wrote her Triple Concerto (a BSO co-commission receiving its world premiere at these concerts) for the unusual combination of violin, cello, and bayan, a type of accordion often employed by Gubaidulina and a mainstay of Russian folk music. Joining Latvian violinist Baiba Skride are Dutch cellist Harriet Krijgh and Swiss bayanist Elsbeth Moser, both making their BSO debuts. Shostakovich wrote his Seventh Symphony, Leningrad, as a tribute to the peoples' fortitude in the face of the German Army's long and destructive siege of that city during World War II. Serge Koussevitzky led the first U.S. concert performances of the piece with the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra in August 1942, following the NBC Symphony's radio broadcast premiere under Toscanini the previous month. The present performances continue Andris Nelsons' and the BSO's survey of the complete Shostakovich symphonies, which are being recorded for Deutsche Grammophon.