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A set of table top and standard lamps, illuminating the stage as a living room. The female musicians at the front of the stage performing on both period and modern instruments, playing and then reading text from the wartime diaries of Gertrude Stein. The score carefully mixing Matthew Locke's music of the 17th century with that of today. Other ensemble members set back in the half-light, providing a haunting musical commentary to the drama. All combined, composed and shaped expertly by composer-director Heiner Goebbels. 

Commissioned by the Southbank Centre for the London Sinfonietta and the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Songs of Wars I have Seen has helped re-invent the listening experience and provide a profoundly moving event for audiences around the world.

A new work by Heiner Goebbels is one of the most beguiling experiences contemporary music has to offer ….[this is an]…extraordinary musical experience. The Guardian

Production overview

Duration: 12/07/2007 Queen Elizabeth Hall, London Sinfonietta Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment
Genre: Orchestral work with theatrical presentation: A staged concert with texts by Gertrude Stein : 1/picc.1.1/bass.1  1 harp 1piano/harpsichord 1sampler 2perc 1theorbo (players double temple bowls, all instruments amplified) = 18 players + conductor + sound projection
Notes: Performed by players from both London Sinfonietta and Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (using period instruments)
Production Notes: Theatrical presentation consisting of space, staging and a lighting design (including lit stands, costumes and props) and to be realized in consultation with Heiner Goebbels. 
Text: From “Wars I Have Seen” by Gertrude Stein, spoken by selected female instrumentalists
Commissioned: Southbank Centre commission for London Sinfonietta and Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment

Find out more

Please contact London Sinfonietta CEO & Artistic Director Andrew Burke for more information.

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