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Created to mark the twentieth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, this piece does not merely celebrate that momentous event; its larger purpose is to explore through music the entire story of the city’s division. Each of its six movements is inspired by historical events during the Wall’s rise and fall; in evoking the various moods associated with those events, the piece charts the changing social and political climate of Berlin during the post-war years.
The work’s concertante nature likewise changes as it proceeds: sometimes the members of the trio play as three soloists alongside the orchestra, at other times they join together as a whole. Its solo and ensemble passages ranging from the atmospherically nuanced to the propulsively rhythmic, Berliner Konzert lends powerful expression to a city’s troubled history even as it celebrates the collapse of a barrier that claimed so many lives.
For Piano trio (violin, cello, piano) and string orchestra.
This work was premiered on November 24, 2009 at the namesake concert presented by Soundstreams at the Jane Mallett Theatre in Toronto (Canada).