Featuring the final, mystical piano sonata of Alexander Scriabin in an unusual pairing with Arnold Schönberg’s haunting melodrama Pierrot Lunaire.
The opening event of Expressionism: Emotions Unchained features the iconic final piano sonata of the mystical composer Alexander Scriabin, paired with Arnold Schönberg’s haunting melodrama Pierrot Lunaire for mezzo soprano and instrumental ensemble.
In their highly individualistic ways, each of these works is daring and highly expressive. Scriabin used his ‘mystic’ chord to create harmonies and textures that weave a fabric of uncanny intensity, inviting us into chromatic worlds never previously imagined in music.
With Pierrot Lunaire, Schönberg created a piece ripe with paradox: the character Pierrot is both a hero and a fool, his is a male role sung by a woman who shifts between first and third person narration, performing high art as cabaret and vice versa, within an ensemble that is both comprised of soloists but also acts as an orchestra.
That these works were composed within a year of one another – 1912 for the Schönberg, 1913 for the Scriabin – reflects the intense, even feverish beginnings of Expressionism as an artistic intellectual movement in which we can revel, even – or particularly – today.
This concert is part of The Arts Institute festival, Expressionism: Emotions Unchained.
Our festival offers a unique integration of pivotal music, visual art, and film of this energetic and vibrant artistic era of unbounded influence. Join us for four extraordinary evenings with world-leading artists.
In addition to this concert, for the fullest experience of the festival, please consider also the screening of Metropolis on Monday 14 March, the talk on Wednesday 16 March featuring the close relationship between Expressionist visual art and music, and the concert on Saturday 19 March featuring three extraordinary string quartets performed by world-class musicians.
Date: Saturday 12 March 2022
Time: 19:00–21:00 (pre-concert talk 19:00, performance 19:30)
Venue: Upper Theatre, Sherwell Centre, University of Plymouth
Ticket information: Special festival price: standard £6 / concessions £5 / free for all students / Young Arts Pass (YAP) Under 18