Anna Meredith: “Five Telegrams”
The BBC Proms is often a hotbed for intriguing programming, where the newest voices in classical music are programmed alongside the canonic “warhorses.” This year was no exception—the opening concert of the 2018 season saw the world premiere of Five Telegrams by the British composer Anna Meredith. Inspired by communications sent by soldiers during World War I, the piece is scored for full orchestra (with an extra complement of brass), chorus, and visual projections. Below is the result, which is a mesmerizing spectacle for both the eyes and ears.
(While the piece deserves a listen in its entirety, for those short on time, skip to 23:40 in the video below for a lead-in to some of the most insanely powerful, mind-blowing chords in the entirety of music.)
As a bonus, here is a piece Meredith composed for the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain in 2012—a fantastic showcase for body percussion, rather than instruments. The coordination and energy of these young instrumentalists has to be seen to be believed…