Ravel, Saariaho, and Salonen with the Oslo Philharmonic

On May 16, Lionel Bringuier conducts the Oslo Philharmonic in a program including Ravel, Salonen, and Saariaho. French harpist Xavier de Maistre will perform Kaija Saariaho’s harp concerto, Trans, which was composed for him and premiered by him earlier this year with the LA Phil. Saariaho’s piece aims to “keep all instrumental colors of the orchestra available for this piece, but find musical situations to allow the harp to have its soloist space.”

Bringuier will conduct Ravel’s Daphnes et Chloe, a shepherd’s tale with magical hues, and his Valses Nobles et Sentimentales, a work in which the orchestra dances in a beautiful spring guise. Completing the program is Esa-Pekka Salonen’s Helix. Of the work, he says: “the process in Helix is, in essence, a nine-minute-long accelerando. The musical expression changes drastically in nine minutes. The idyllic, almost pastoral opening phrase written for piccolo and contrabassoon returns later through the horns and trumpets, fortissimo, and is surrounded by a busy tutti ensemble. The final part reveals the material in an almost manic light”.