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John Harbison

Publisher: AMP

Koussevitzky Said (2012)
Associated Music Publishers Inc
Chorus and Orchestra/Ensemble
Year Composed
7 Minutes
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Programme Note
John Harbison Koussevitzky Said (2012)
First performance:
August 26, 2012
Tanglewood Festival of Music
Boston Symphony Orchestra
Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos, conductor
Lenox, MA

  • 20 NOV 2014
    Boston, MA
    Boston Symphony Orchestra
    Tanglewood Festival Chorus; Andris Nelsons, conductor

    Other Dates:
    21,22 November - Boston, MA
  • 26 AUG 2012
    Koussevitzky Said World Premiere
    Tanglewood, Lenox, MA
    Boston Symphony; 75th Anniversary Commission
    TWD Festival Chorus; Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, conductor

So as texts for his brief choral scherzo Harbison instead chose from the informal literature of Koussevitzky-isms, casual phrases attributed to him, often quoted by BSO musicians with the original creative syntax passed down through the years. The piece for instance opens with a richly contrapuntal setting of Koussevitzky’s famous pronouncement: “The next Beethoven will from Colorado come.” Later the chorus sings “I will keep playing this music — until you hear it”; “I am an American, but I still love Russia”; and finally, “Let's do it together for our own satisfaction.”
Jeremy Eichler, Boston Globe,28/08/2012
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