Jul 21, 2023
SAN FRANCISCO, CA—Esa-Pekka Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony announce the release of two new spatial audio recordings—Elizabeth Ogonek’s Sleep & Unremembrance and Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring—available today exclusively via the Apple Music Classical app. Both releases were recorded live in concert with Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony on March 10–12, 2022.
Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony will release three additional spatial audio recordings exclusive to Apple Music Classical in September: Anders Hillborg’s Kongsgaard Variations, recorded October 2021; Ottorino Respighi’s Pines of Rome, recorded June 2022; and Jean Sibelius’s Symphony No. 5, recorded June 2022.
In March 2023, the San Francisco Symphony announced its partnership with Apple Music Classical—a new standalone music streaming app designed to deliver an unrivaled listening experience for classical music lovers—with the release of new spatial audio recordings of György Ligeti’s Clocks and Clouds, Lux Aeterna, and Ramifications.
With Apple Music Classical, Apple Music subscribers can easily find any recording in the world’s largest classical music catalog with fully optimized search; enjoy the highest audio quality available and experience many classical favorites in a whole new way with immersive Spatial Audio; browse expertly curated playlists, insightful composer biographies, and descriptions of thousands of works; and more. Apple Music Classical is available on the App Store and is included at no extra cost with nearly all Apple Music subscriptions. The combination of Apple Music Classical and Apple Music provides a complete music experience for everyone, from longtime classical fans to first-time listeners, and everyone in between.
About Elizabeth Ogonek’s Sleep & Unremembrance and Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring
Elizabeth Ogonek often finds inspiration for her compositions in poetry. One of her favorite poets is the late Polish writer Wisława Szymborska, who received the 1996 Nobel Prize in Literature. Szymborska’s poem “While Sleeping,” a contemplation of memory and forgetting written not long before her death in 2012, provided the impetus for Sleep & Unremembrance (2016). Much as the poem involves a collage of remembered images, Ogonek’s single-movement work came together not in chronological order but rather as a collection of fragmentary ideas that she finally molded into a unified whole. She sees her piece as “a reminder that behind every corner lurks mystery, surprise and change. Thus, the music twists and turns in search of its own memories and its true identity.” The San Francisco Chronicle wrote, “Among the splendors of Sleep & Unremembrance ... is Ogonek’s light-footed mastery of the orchestra. Woodwinds and strings balance one another in a variety of colorful combinations that are never overtly showy but always piquant. Under Salonen’s deft leadership, the orchestra delivered these instrumental watercolors with perfect care, creating a world that was both solid and evanescent.”
Set in pagan Russia with roots in the region’s folk music, Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring is an exhilarating and revolutionary work that has had a profound impact on modern music since its premiere in 1913. Stravinsky insisted that the work “is unified by a single idea: the mystery and great surge of creative power of spring.” There are many connections to folk music, including a Lithuanian tune that is the basis of the incredibly famous, astonishingly difficult high-pitched bassoon solo that opens the piece.
These recordings of Elizabeth Ogonek’s Sleep & Unremembrance and Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring were produced by Jason O'Connell. Recording engineers were Jon Johannsen and Jason O'Connell, and the mastering engineer and mixing engineer was Mark Willsher.
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