L’Auditori de Barcelona is the first music institution in Europe to commission a work to be written, performed and premiered during lockdown. Entitled Confiants, composer Bernat Vivancos wrote it during the initial days of lockdown for the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra musicians to be able to play at home.
The piece lasts just over three minutes and was designed so that the orchestra’s seventy member musicians could record themselves on their own devices and mobile phones. What we see is what they performed in their own homes without any sound doctoring or use of playback, and which was subsequently mixed to ensure their individual recordings fitted with the score. Bernat Vivancos explains it to us as follows:
“In the midst of lockdown, I received a commission from L’Auditori to compose, as quickly as possible, a work for a large orchestra to be made into a video with all the musicians playing their instruments at home. It was a challenging idea, on a sound level almost something akin to crafting filigree, with L’Auditori, once again, demonstrating its commitment to new creation, rejecting the customary easy and unimaginative methods of the virtual music world.
I immediately set about considering the orchestral body and the incorporation of the orchestral instruments that would gradually be grouped together as the work progressed, to enable me to appreciate how to move from the individual to the bigger picture. It only lasts three minutes and responds to the project requirements: effective, dynamic, and with a soloist piece, a chamber music piece and orchestral work, with many sound layers, and, obviously, without forsaking my own compositional style. It is a giant score for 70 musicians, with 51 independent voices and where the textural work multiplies up to a harmonised tutti: from inside homes to outside, on roof terraces and balconies; from the solo trumpet player to the extended family; here we see musicians who are confined but, above all, are Confident, who venture beyond those constraints to play for their city.”
Marc Cuscó, of Escafior Films, was charged with making the video, where the OBC musicians can be seen playing in multi-screen format along with images of the city of Barcelona. The video, which will be shared on social media using the hashtag #TrobatAmbLaMúsica, gives a glimpse of the image of L’Auditori’s upcoming 20-21 season to be presented on Friday 5 June.
With the première of Confiants, L’Auditori takes its commitment to new music and Catalan composers one step further. This work has been devised as a gift for the general public and seeks to convey the message that, despite everything, the music will continue to play and that soon performers and audiences will be together once again in our concert halls.
L’Auditori i l’OBC estrenen la primera obra orquestral escrita i interpretada durant el confinament
27-May-2020 – Aleix Palau