All posts tagged: LPOGardner

Prom 36 A Space Odyssey: LPO/Gardner review – unsettling and awesome | Proms 2023

Like many, I first heard György Ligeti’s music on the soundtrack of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey when I was a teenager, and for some years after was unable to dissociate its unearthliness from Kubrick’s ambitious vision of human evolution as a product of alien intervention. Edward Gardner’s London Philharmonic Prom marked this year’s Ligeti centenary by acknowledging 2001’s grip on our imaginations, placing his Requiem and Lux Aeterna alongside Strauss’s Also Sprach Zarathustra. It’s hard to dissociate the Strauss from some of the film’s most iconic moments, either. Bleak and sparse despite the awesome volume of sound it can generate, the Requiem, completed in 1965, offers no comfort for the fear and violence it evokes, and hearing it complete (Kubrick only uses the Kyrie) can be unsettling. Gardner’s interpretation was a thing of extremes. The quiet, penumbral opening Introit seemed to hover on the verges of sound and silence. Later, the roaring brass of the Dies Irae pinned you to your seat. The combined forces of the London Philharmonic Choir, Royal Northern College …