Conductor Gemma New Returns To U.K. To Lead Immersive Premiere By Huang Ruo and BBCSSO at the Proms

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By: May. 21, 2024
Conductor Gemma New Returns To U.K. To Lead Immersive Premiere By Huang Ruo and BBCSSO at the Proms
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Internationally renowned conductor Gemma New will return to the United Kingdom this summer for two significant musical events: the world premiere performances of Huang Ruo's City of Floating Sounds with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in Manchester on June 6, 7 and 8, 2024, and a return to The BBC Proms with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra on Friday, August 16, 2024 at 7:30pm.

Returning to The BBC Proms for the second year in a row with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra at London's Royal Albert Hall, New leads the orchestra in "Prom 36: Gemma New conducts Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream." Along with the title work by Mendelssohn, incorporating a performance by the National Youth Choir of Scotland (NYCOS), the program includes French Romantic composer Mel Bonis' work Salomé and Mozart's Clarinet Concerto featuring soloist Anthony McGill. The concert will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 and televised on BBC Four.

In her earlier UK visit of the summer - June 6, 7 and 8, 2024 - New leads the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra in the world premiere performances of Huang Ruo's City of Floating Sounds, an immersive symphonic experience inviting audience members to connect with their surroundings and one another, co-commissioned by Factory International and Lincoln Center.

Pushing the boundaries of classical music performance, City of Floating Sounds uses cutting-edge creative technology to take music out into the city where it's being performed. Guided by a bespoke mobile app, audience members will make their way through the streets of Manchester listening to fragments of Huang Ruo's meditative new work, recorded by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra.

About leading the world premiere of this new work, New says, "We are embarking on a brand new sensory and social offering of music performance, using cutting edge technology that provides more kinetic interaction. I look forward to seeing how audiences will relate to this unique kind of immersive sonic experience."

As an artist and composer, Huang Ruo is known for his distinctive sound blending Chinese folk with Western avant-garde music. No stranger to composing for urban landscapes, he created a site-specific audio work in Manchester Town Hall for Music for a Busy City at Factory International's MIF17 festival, working alongside Creative Technologist Josh Kope?ek from Echoes - a company that specializes in creating unique sound experiences through app technology.

In City of Floating Sounds, the audience experiences a fusion of music and technology, beginning with a mobile app-enabled soundscape linked to several locations across the city, incorporating evolving musical fragments that illuminate the surrounding environment. Participants are free to choose their own routes as they make their way to the performance venue - and their experience of the work will differ depending on the path they choose and those they interact with on the way. There are four suggested routes, ranging from 1 to 1.3 miles, beginning at Manchester's Cathedral Gardens, Peel Park, Ordsall Park and Sackville Gardens. The strands of this symphony grow and intertwine as audience members approach Aviva Studios, where their experience culminates in a live performance by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra led by New.

City of Floating Sounds later makes its North American premiere in a performance by the Festival Orchestra of Lincoln Center, conducted by Music Director Jonathon Heyward, at New York's David Geffen Hall on Tuesday, July 23 and Wednesday, July 24, 2024 at 7:30pm. Guided by the dedicated app, audience members will again weave their way through city streets toward the live performance inside the hall.

Program Details

City of Floating Sounds
Thursday, June 6, 2024 at 6:30pm
Friday, June 7, 2024 at 6:30pm
Saturday, June 8, 2024 at 6:30pm
Various Venues -> Aviva Studios | Manchester, UK
Ticket: £7-15

Huang Ruo - City of Floating Sounds [World Premiere]

BBC Proms Presents Prom 36:
Gemma New conducts Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream
Friday, August 16, 2024 at 7:30pm
Royal Albert Hall | London, UK
Tickets: £11-54

Bonis - Salomé
Mozart - Clarinet Concerto in A Major
Mendelssohn - A Midsummer Night's Dream

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Gemma New, conductor
Anthony McGill, clarinet
NYCOS Chamber Choir

About Gemma New

New Zealand-born Gemma New, celebrated for her insightful interpretations and dynamic presence, serves as the Artistic Advisor and Principal Conductor of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of Canada's Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra. As she enters her second season with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, the 2023/24 season also marks her ninth and final season leading the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra.

During her 2023/24 season, New made subscription debuts with the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Vancouver Symphony and Orchestre National de France. North American returns include Atlanta Symphony, Seattle Symphony, and Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. Continually in demand in Europe, New also made her debut with the Bamberger Symphoniker as well as conducting the Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica de Barcelona y Nacional de Cataluña, Orquesta Nacional de España, Orchestre de l'Opéra de Rouen-Normandie, Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine and Staatsorchester Hannover.

In Summer 2023, New made her debut at Lincoln Center and returned to the Hollywood Bowl with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. She additionally made festival appearances including Chicago's Grant Park Music Festival, Festival de la Chaise-Dieu with Orchestre National de Lyon and Opera Theatre of St. Louis.

New regularly appears with top orchestras in North America and Europe, having conducted the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, WDR Sinfonieorchester, BBC Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, Helsingborgs Symfoniorkester, Ulster Orchestra, Orchestre National d'Ile de France and Sydney Symphony Orchestra.

In her work as Music Director of the Hamilton Philharmonic, New has been committed to deepening the artistic level of the orchestra and expanding its reach into the community. New launched the HPO's first "Intimate and Immersive" concert series, which celebrates music by Canadian composers in a visually vibrant setting. From Handel's Messiah, to Mahler's Symphony No. 5, to Iman Habibi's Jeder Baum spricht, the HPO under New's leadership has embraced a programming style that builds a trust and excitement with audiences. Highlights include collaborations with Canada's leading soloists, such as James Ehnes, Timothy Chooi, Janina Fialkowska and Stewart Goodyear. New has also encouraged growth of the HPO Family and Education programs, as well as actively contributing to the strong relationship between the HPO and the HPYO.

New previously served as Principal Guest Conductor of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, as well as Resident Conductor of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and Associate Conductor of the New Jersey Symphony. A former Dudamel Conducting Fellow with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Conducting Fellow at Tanglewood Music Center, she was awarded Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Awards in 2017, 2019 and 2020, before receiving the 2021 Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award.

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Photo Credit: Roy Cox Photography



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