October 09, 2006

The Long Beach Symphony has come up with a novel way to premiere a new work.

For their new six-concert season, they've commissioned a six-movement Concerto for Winds from film composer David Newman. The concerto will be premiered one movement at a time during the season.

Each of the first five movements features one of the soloists -- flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, and bassoon -- and as his/her movement is premiered, that soloist will also perform a complete concerto as part of that evening's concert. The five movements will be repeated on the sixth and final concert of the season as part of the first performance of the complete work, including the debut of the final movement, which will feature all five soloists.

Very clever. It should (assuming the piece is any good) build word of mouth during the season, and those who hear the early movements are likely to be curious about the rest of the piece, increasing repeat business. It's also a creative way to showcase the orchestra's own musicians, as the LBSO principals will be the five soloists.

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