United Strings of Europe: Renewal | BIS BIS2549

United Strings of Europe: Renewal


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Label: BIS

Cat No: BIS2549

Barcode: 7318599925493

Format: Hybrid SACD

Number of Discs: 1

Release Date: 14th January 2022



Having released their debut album In motion in 2020, the musicians that make up United Strings of Europe (USE) return with another innovative programme: Renewal. The title refers in part to the fact that the majority of the works included are heard in arrangements and adaptations tailor-made for the ensemble by Julian Azkoul, who also directs it from the violin. In Winterís House by Joanna Marsh and Caroline Shawís and the swallow are both originally choral works while a second work by Shaw, Entríacte, was conceived for string quartet, but is here heard in the composerís own version for string orchestra.

A similar treatment has been given Mendelssohnís F minor String Quartet, one of the composerís final works, written in reaction to the unexpected death of his beloved sister Fanny. For the centrepiece of the disc, Osvaldo Golijovís Three Songs, USE is joined by soprano Ruby Hughes. The three songs were written for different occasions, but were rearranged by the composer to form a single work, capturing various strands of his immigrant identity as well as specific moments of inspiration, both felicitous and tragic. This is the first time all three songs appear with string orchestra on disc.

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