Blog / Unpacking Murder & Redemption: III

Unpacking Murder & Redemption: III

Posted on 8 Feb 2017 by Cristina Maldonado

Aaron Copland as subject of a Young People's Concert, 1970

In July 1940, conductor/composer/double bassist Serge Koussevitzky invited Aaron Copland to be part of the faculty at the first summer school of the Berkshire Music Center at Tanglewood. Copland was to become a major part of Tanglewood’s illustrious history, teaching and mentoring a generation of American musicians.

During one of his trips to the Berkshires, Copland dropped in to visit a library near Lenox, Massachusetts. And it was here that he happened upon Edward Andrews’ seminal book on the Shakers, The Gift to be Simple: Songs, Dances and Rituals of the American Shakers. Within its pages, he found Hymn 72, Simple Gifts, which became the foundation of his Pulitzer prize-winning Appalachian Spring – a composition that “defines him and defines American music unlike anything else”.

Despite the relative complexity and intricacy of Appalachian Spring, Copland found within Simple Gifts the very core of the shaker religion – simplicity. And this simplicity is exquisitely articulated in his jubilant setting.

John Adams’ setting of Simple Gifts is heard in Shaker Loops, as part of our salvation set in Murder & Redemption.

2 - 14 February 2017
Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Newcastle and Sydney.

Pekka Kuusisto Director & Violin
Sam Amidon Voice, Guitar & Banjo
Australian Chamber Orchestra

TRAD. (arr. Muhly) Kedron
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: I. Adagio con moto
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) Way Go Lily
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: II. Con moto
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) Wild Bill Jones
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: III. Con moto – Vivace – Andante – Tempo I
TRAD. (arr. Muhly) How Come That Blood
JANÁČEK (arr. strings) String Quartet No.1 ‘Kreutzer Sonata’: IV. Con moto
TRAD. The Redemption Set
ADAMS, John Shaker Loops: I. Shaking and trembling
BRACKETT Traditional Shaker hymn: Simple Gifts
ADAMS, John Shaker Loops: II. Hymning slews, III. Loops and verses, IV. A final shaking