LA Phil’s concerts for Valentine’s weekend featuring a younger, more romantic Berg
‘Romance at the Phil’ reunites the orchestra with former Resident Conductor Lionel Bringuier to celebrate the season of love in three lush concerts, with works by Beethoven, Brahms… and Alban Berg‘s Seven Early Songs, an undeniable lure for art song aficionados.
Berg’s songs, written between 1905 and 1908, are a harmonic and stylistic cross-section of their time, embracing the new ideals of the 20th yet still fully infused with a Romantic sensibility. The young composer was studying with 12-tone titan Arnold Schoenberg when he wrote the cycle, but still steeped in the music of Strauss, Debussy, Wolf, and of course, Mahler and Wagner, who cast long shadows then as well as now.
The songs show signs of all of this, and offer a moving glimpse of the developing creative process of one of the greatest composers of the last century. In the hands of Swedish soprano Camilla Tilling, known for her roles in Mozart operas and seasoned on the stage and in concert halls around the world. Tilling’s warm, ethereal tone is a good match for the work, and we’re likely in for a treat.