Jessica Cottis Conductor
Lorina Gore Soprano, Artist in Focus
Courtenay Cleary Violin
Canberra Symphony Orchestra
The 2021 Llewellyn Series opens with Stravinsky’s Circus Polka, originally premiered with 50 elephants from the Barnum & Bailey Circus. The dancing continues in Holly Harrison’s Fizzin’ Fury, which features progressive rock and Dixieland jazz influences.
The centrepiece is Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins, a scathing commentary on the perils of capitalist ambitions. This fractured fairy tale follows Anna – voiced by Lorina Gore – as she traverses an imaginary parallel of the United States of America to earn money for her greedy family. Each time Anna’s alter ego tries to behave morally, she’s scolded for failing to commit one of the seven deadly sins: pride, greed, wrath, envy, lust, gluttony and sloth. Each has its own musical character; a skilful satirist, Weill borrows from popular and traditional music: the foxtrot, the church chorale, circus music – even barbershop quartet.
A contemporary of Weill, Erich Wolfgang Korngold was held in high regard among film directors for his romantic, lush and melodic style. Despite his Hollywood success, this virtuosic violin concerto remains his most well-known piece.