14 May 2009

More Messiaen Discoveries!

In December 2008 the University Chamber Choir gave the modern premiere of two choruses for “Joan of Arc” by Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992). These were performed just once, in 1941, and were then completely lost until Summer 2008, when they were discovered and edited by Lucie Kayas (Paris Conservatoire), Nigel Simeone and Tom Owen (University of Sheffield).

Nigel Simeone has been invited to give a special presentation on these hitherto unknown pieces at the Festival Messiaen au Pays de la Meije (Hautes-Alpes) in July 2009, and will illustrate this lecture using a specially made recording of the two choruses by the University Chamber Choir. This is the fifth year in succession that Nigel has been invited to participate in the Festival Messiaen, and he will also give the Festival’s keynote speech on “La tentation de l’exotisme.”