Wednesday, May 24, 2006

British Musicologist, Educator and Composer Named Artistic Advisor Of The Renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra

"British musicologist, educator and composer Gerard McBurney has been named to the newly created position of artistic programming adviser at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, effective Sept. 1.

McBurney, the presence behind the CSO's successful "Beyond the Score" concerts, will continue as creative director of that series, which will enter its second season in 2006-07. His new duties as a member of the orchestra's artistic team will include creating special programmatic themes and artistic initiatives, and leading educational activities, panel discussions, symposiums and other projects."

John von Rhein "Composer joins CSO artistic team" The Chicago Tribune May 24, 2006


The Noise of Time

Conceived & Directed by Simon McBurney

Creative Collaborator Gerard McBurney
Design Joanna Parker
Sound Christopher Shutt with Gareth Fry
Lighting Paul Anderson
Projections Jan Hartley
Costume Christina Cunningham
Based on an idea by Philip Setzer
The Emerson String Quartet Philip Setzer, violin, Eugene Drucker, violin, Lawrence Dutton, viola David Finckel, cello

Performers Liam Steel, Tam Ward

Originally commissioned by Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, Inc., the Abe Fortas Memorial Fund of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Berliner Festpiele, Barbican Centre (BITE), the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, MIFA / the Massachusetts International Festival of the Arts and UCLA Performing Arts.


Complicite is an international touring theatre based in London, led by Simon McBurney. The Company last performed in Moscow in 1993 with The Street of Crocodiles.

Complicite is funded by Arts Council England and supported by The British Council.

Britain’s Complicite teams up with America’s renowned Emerson String Quartet in this devastatingly beautiful work contemplating the haunted life of the great composer Shostakovich. Seamlessly finding theatrical equivalents for apparently non-theatrical material, The Noise of Time canters on the poignant sounds of the troubled composer’s final String Quartet No.15 in E flat minor

Noise of Time is a multi-facetted theatrical piece where darkness and light, visual and musical images alternate like in human memory. The director Simon McBurney speaks about his idea: “Noise of Time is an attempt to move the music of Shostakovich’s Quartet No.15 into the context of dramatic action. This action is not a play and not a concert, but it creates the sensation of the composer’s presence and enables us to hear his voice. It is a dramatic meditation which aspires to tune the ear and the eye so that they can hear the heart beat in this extremely intimate musical opus, in this exclusively personal work”.

It is not by chance that the creators of the production quote in one of the programmes Sofia Gubaidulina’s words about Dmitri Shostakovich’s music: “Pain personified, the epitome of the tragedy and terror or our times”.

Text credit:

Photo credit: With thanks.


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