Nielsen’s Fifth Symphony begins in an uncertain
world – and then has to fight for its very life. But
then, as Nielsen himself put it, “Music is life”; and
this tough, shattering, ultimately unconquerable
symphony might just be 20th century music’s
supreme tribute to the power of the human spirit.
Given Thomas Dausgaard’s special empathy
for Nielsen, it should make a compelling climax
to a concert that begins with Nielsen’s radiant
evocation of Greek myth, and traces his creative
roots back to the classical proportions and intense
emotional power of Mozart’s evergreen Clarinet
Concerto – played here by a clarinettist whose
every performance is an occasion, Martin Fröst.
Prelude: 6.45pm in the Recital Room
Nordic music expert Leah Broad of the University
of Oxford introduces Carl Nielsen’s music.