2022 marks the 60th anniversary of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem, which was commissioned to mark the consecration of the rebuilt Coventry Cathedral, destroyed during a bombing raid in World War II. Britten’s piece takes a firm pacifist stance, setting World War I-era poetry by Wilfred Owen—sung by the two male soloists—interleaved with his setting of the traditional Latin mass for the dead. The Boston Symphony Orchestra gave the American premiere of this great work at Tanglewood in 1963 under Erich Leinsdorf. As was conceived for the work’s first performances, the soloists in this performance represent the warring powers of Russia, England, and Germany. British-Italian conductor Antonio Pappano conducts this concert also featuring the Tanglewood Festival Chorus.
In the spirit of peace and justice in our world, the Boston Symphony Orchestra dedicates this week's performances of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem to the people of Ukraine and all those resisting the invasion of their sovereign country. A performance of the Ukrainian National Anthem by the BSO and Tanglewood Festival Chorus, led by Sir Antonio Pappano, will open Thursday's concert.
On the advice of her physician following news of her pregnancy, soprano Albina Shagimuratova has made the difficult decision to withdraw from the BSO’s upcoming performances of Britten’s War Requiem.
We are pleased to announce that Amanda Majeski, making her BSO debut, will replace Ms. Shagimuratova as soprano soloist for these concerts.