John Adams at 70: Grand Pianola Music

25 February 2017 / 19:30

We are sorry to announce that Joana Carneiro is no longer able to conduct this concert. Happily, this is due to her having recently given birth, and we send her and her family all our best wishes.

We are delighted that Benjamin Shwartz is able to step in to conduct at such short notice.


Cartoon capers and nostalgia remade in this technicolor 70th birthday toast to John Adams.

Every note of John Adams’s music is an exploration of the sounds that changed America. European romanticism, Looney Tunes, plus a shiny new work from thirty-something maverick composer Timo Andres: a concert that’s simultaneously nostalgic and forward-looking, as Adams is himself.

So take nothing for granted. You might find yourself relaxing into the lush world of Adams’s Grand Pianola Music – but the cartoon-inspired mayhem of Chamber Symphony? Blink and you miss it. It’s all part of the composer's new world, a potent inspiration to young American voices like Timo Andres. Under the powerhouse direction of Joana Carneiro, this will glow like neon. 

Programme & Performers

John Adams Chamber Symphony
Timo Andres Steady Hand for two pianos and orchestra (world premiere)
Philip Glass Music in Similar Motion*
John Adams Grand Pianola Music

Timo Andres and David Kaplan pianos
Britten Sinfonia
*Britten Sinfonia Academy
Synergy Vocals
Benjamin Shwartz

Produced by the Barbican and Britten Sinfonia


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