'THE ANNUNCIATION' BALLET IN MONNCHEN GLADBACH & KREFELD, The second part of a ballet evening 'Farben der Welt' choreographed and directed by Robert North. Musical direction: Andreas Fellner ,choreography assistant: Sheri Cook , stage and costumes: Andrew Storer.
The music of 'The Annunciation' was adapted by its composer Howard Blake from a score he had originally composed for a BBC Play for Today,'Stronger than the Sun' with a script by Stephen Poliakoff and starring Francesca Annis and Tom Bell. It was an unusually 'dark' score for 6 violas, 6 violoncelli, contrabass, piano and percussion and it was played and recorded at that time by a section of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by the composer. The film told the harrowing story of a young woman who sacrificed her own life in a supreme protest at the use of nuclear arms. The film raised a considerable stir and the parallels with The Crucifixion were evident. Robert North was deeply affected by it and created this ballet to its music., Opera houses of Monnchen Gladbach and Krefeld, Lower Rheinland
FOUR ONE-ACT BALLETS DIRECTED AND CHOREOGRAPHED BY ROBERT NORTH
From paintings of the Renaissance and the classical modernity Robert North draws the ideas for this opulent ballet evening, to which the Niederrheinische Sinfoniker give musical splendor.
Henri Matisse caused a sensation in the 1940s with a series of paper cutouts, including many circus motifs. He was no stranger to the circles of the European avant-garde when this cycle appeared under the title Jazz - an allusion to the principle of improvisation. Robert North approaches Matisse with the eye and the imagination of the choreographer and gains exciting impulses for the dance from the colorfulness, ornamentation and clarity of the images in combination with music by Stravinsky.
A popular subject in Florentine painting of the 15th century, which also Sandro Botticelli took up, is the Annunciation to Mary. Botticelli made this biblical scene so theatrically expressive that Robert North felt inspired by the painting and, in collaboration with the composer Howard Blake, freely interpreted The Annunciation as a ballet, 'Verkundigung' (Sandro Botticelli)
SINFONIETTA FOR 10 BRASS IN STOCKHOLM, Sinfonietta Brass Ensemble, Stockholm, directed by Eirik Bernhard Steins, St. Goran's, Stockholm, Sweden
'AGATHA' FILM SUITE - HARROGATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, Harrogate Symphony Orchestra ('Agatha Suite' to be conducted by Howard Blake), Harrogate Proms, Royal Hall Harrogate, Yorkshire
A Very British Proms
Royal Hall June 22nd 2019
English Folk Song Suite (11) Vaughan-Williams
Elizabethan Serenade (3.40) and Binge
The Watermill (3.50) (oboe soloist)
Jupiter (from The Planets) (7.30) Holst
The Lark Ascending (15) Vaughan-Williams
By the Sleepy Lagoon (4) Coates
March from the Little Suite (4) Trevor Duncan
4 Scottish Dances (10) Malcolm Arnold
Crown Imperial (7) Walton
Chanson de Matin (4) Elgar
Agatha (12) Howard Blake
Nimrod (Enigma Variations) (3) Elgar
Pomp and Circumstance March no. 1 or 4 (5) Elgar
Fantasia on British Sea Songs (18) Wood/Sergeant
and Rule Britannia
Jerusalem (3) Parry
1st half: 62
2nd half: 52 mins
CONCERT OF CHORAL-ORCHESTRAL WORKS IN SAINT ALBANS CATHEDRAL, Dong ill-Shin, Peter Auty, Julian Trevelyan, St.Albans Bach Choir directed by Andrew Sinclair with The Orchestra of St. Martin in the Fields, conducted by the composer
30TH ORGAN FESTIVAL OPENING ST. ALBANS CATHEDRAL 13th JULY 2019
A concert of the music of Howard Blake obe fram, firstly celebrating his 80th year, secondly celebrating the opening of the 30th St Albans organ festival directed by David Titterington and thirdly recalling that Howard’s acclaimed oratorio 'Benedictus' was given its world premiere in St Albans Cathedral when conducted by Sir David Willcocks, sung by tenor Robert Tear, played by violist Frederick Riddle, withThe St Albans Bach and Cathedral Choirs and The English Chamber Orchestra with speaker, the very rev. the Dean of Saint Albans, (January 25th 1986). The programme planned for July 13th 2019 recalls this memorable concert but substantially adds to it:
1. THE RISE OF THE HOUSE OF USHER (2003) for solo organ (Dong ill-Shin,top prize-winning S.Korean organist) – A concert work originally commissioned by the Usher Hall Edinburgh to celebrate the restoration of their historic Father Willis organ and first performed there by Dame Gillian Weir on June 10th. 2003.
2.WALKING IN THE AIR (1982) sung by the internationally-acclaimed operatic tenor Peter Auty, who as a St. Paul’s chorister was selected by composer Howard Blake to record the definitive version of ‘Walking in the Air’ for his Oscar-nominated animation film and album of ‘The Snowman’. This concert astonishingly brings them back together for the very first time since that very memorable recording of 1982, .
3. 'SPEECH AFTER LONG SILENCE' (2009) a virtuoso piano work commissioned by Vladimir Ashkenazy for the world piano contest in Hong Kong 2009, here played by the brilliant young St. Albans piano prizewinner, Julian Trevelyan
4. SONGS OF TRUTH AND GLORY (2005) - Five poems of George Herbert, (opus 546) for chamber choir and ensemble, originally commissioned as The Elgar Commission for the Three Choirs Festival 2005, Here performed by a section of the St. Albans Bach Choir conducted by Andrew Lucas.
5. BENEDICTUS – A DRAMATIC ORATORIO (1986), was originally commissioned by Victor Farwell, Abbot of the Benedictine abbey of Worth in mid-Sussex, in order to celebrate the 1,500th birthday of St. Benedict in 1980, when it was performed by Richard Lewis (tenor), The Ditchling Choral Society and The National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Janet Canetty-Clarke, with Frederick Riddle solo viola. It was extensively revised by the composer over the following five years to be given its first complete performance and world premiere at St Albans Cathedral on January 25th 1986 when it was conducted by Sir David Willcocks with Robert Tear (tenor) , Frederick Riddle (solo viola), The English Chamber Orchestra and The Saint Albans Bach Choir.
In this performance, which opens the 30th St Albans Organ Festival on July 13th 2019. The St. Albans Bach Choir (chorus-master Andrew Lucas) and The Orchestra of The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields will be conducted by the composer, with Peter Auty, solo tenor, Rosalind Ventris, solo viola and the role of Saint Benedict spoken by the Very Rev. Dr. Jeffrey John, Dean of St. Alban's.
MANCHESTER OPERA HOUSE THE SNOWMAN STAGE SHOW
THE SNOWMAN STAGE SHOW AT GLASGOW THEATRE ROYAL
22ND SEASON OF THE SNOWMAN STAGE SHOW AT LONDON'S PEACOCK THEATRE, Robert North full ballet company directed by Julian Moss, orchestra directed by Costas Fotopoulos, Sadler's Wells Peacock Theatre, Kingsway London
Birmingham Repertory Theatre’s production of The Snowman returns to the Peacock Theatre, the definitive marker of the Christmas season! Combining dance, live music and storytelling, this enchanting spectacle is one for the whole family. See it from 21 November 2019.
The beloved show is now in its 22nd year, testament to its enduring charm. Based on the children’s book by Raymond Briggs, it also includes songs and music from Channel 4’s 1982 film of the same name, including “Walking in the Air”. The story is wordless, told instead through movement. Special effects ensure the sense of magic and spectacle capture the imaginations of the little ones in the audience.
One Christmas – so the story goes – a young boy rushes excitedly outside at the sight of freshly fallen snow. He takes great pride in building a tall snowman, complete with hat and scarf. All of a sudden, a festive miracle occurs: the icy figure comes to life and takes the boy’s hand. Together they embark on a heart-soaring adventure.
The production is directed by Bill Alexander, who is Artistic Director of Birmingham Repertory Theatre. He counts a Binkie Beaumont Award for Best New Director and a Laurence Olivier Award for Best Director to his name.
The Snowman is produced by John Coates. Original music and lyrics are by Howard Blake. Choreography is courtesy of Robert North, with design by Ruari Murchison’s and lighting by Tim Mitchell.
Families can’t fail to leave this show in top festive spirits. Come and find how fly you can high with the gorgeous, heart-warming The Snowman at Peacock Theatre from 21 November 2019.
Recommended for Anybody who knows Christmas isn't complete without hearing "Walking in the Air", or who grew up reading Raymond Briggs' precious book, should be sure to get The Snowman tickets. This festive treat is perfect for children and grown-ups alike.
Age Recommendations: Suitable for all ages
THE SNOWMAN STAGE SHOW AT THE LYRIC THEATRE HONG-KONG, Peacock theatre touring company
EALING SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA-PIANO CONCERTO-JULIAN TREVELYAN-JOHN GIBBONS OM, Julian Trevelyan. Ealing Symphony Orchestra conducted by John Gibbons, Ealing Green Church
Julian will give his first performance of the Howard Blake Piano Concerto in a programme of symphonic music including Mahler's 10th
BRIGHTON LUNCHTIME CONCERT-BLAKE, PARMENTER AND GREGORY PLAY BLAKE, Paul Gregory (solo guitar), Alan Parmenter (violin) with Howard Blake (piano), Chapel Royal, North Street,Brighton Tuesday 3rd December 1.00pm
'ALL GOD'S CREATURES' - MID-SUSSEX SINFONIA, Jonathan Willcocks,conductor,The Mid-Sussex Sinfonia and Sussex Children's Choir, The Dolphin Hall, Haywards Heath,3.00pm
This is a programme of music by Howard Blake, OBE.FRAM, who will be attending the concert to talk about 'All God's Creatures', 'The Snowman', 'Sussex Prelude' and other works he wrote at the time when he lived and worked in Highbridge Mill, Cuckfield, Sussex.
THE SNOWMAN STAGE SHOW-ESPLANADE THEATRE SINGAPORE, Peacock theatre touring company
WORTHING SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA - PIANO CONCERTO, JULIAN TREVELYAN, JOHN GIBBONS OM, Julian Trevelyan piano, John Gibbons conductor, Worthing Symphony Orchestra, Assembly Hall, Worthing, Sussex
See worthing theatres website: www.worthingtheatres.co.uk phone 01903 206 206
Julian will give his second performance of the Howard Blake Piano Concerto in a popular seasonal concert which will also feature the concert version of 'The Snowman', Tchaikovsky Swan Lake Waltz, Delius Sleigh Ride, Sibelius Karelia Suite, Rimsky Kosakov Dance of the tumblers, Leroy Anderson 'Sleigh Ride' and Waldteufel Skaters Waltz.
'THE SNOWMAN SYMPHONY' WITH HARROGATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, Harrogate Symphony Orchestra, musical director Bryan Western, Royal Hall Harrogate, Yorkshire
The Snowman Symphony was commissioned by HRH The Sultan of Selangor, Malaysia in 2010 when Howard was visiting Kuala Lumpur at his invitation. Its first performance had been reserved from that time until in 2019 His Royal Highness gracefully gave permission for this first performance to take place in the Royal Hall Harrogate on 20th December 2020, it will be performed by The Harrogate Symphony Orchestra,which Howard recently conducted in a performance of his 'Suite from Agatha' (22nd. June 2019.)
'The Snowman' began as an animated film with music in 1982, was enlarged into a 55' ballet in 1993 in which year it was also further extended into a 90' stage show. This was further revised and extended in 2000 in which form it continues to run in theatres in UK and around the world. The symphony draws on materials from all these different versions of the film and the show.