Symphony No 4 -
'... calm, simple and strong.'
Commissioned by the Los Angeles Symphony, the most recent of Arvo Pärt's major works takes on a form he has not explored for almost forty years, and playing for about as many minutes it is among the most substantial. The three earlier symphonies were all written within a period of eight years in the 1960s when he was embarking on his fourth decade and preoccupied with a search for a musical identity which took him way past Russian folklore and through serialism before discovering Gregorian chant and the clear mountain streams of old polyphony.
Although justifiably this fourth symphony takes on 'Los Angeles' as its identifying title, it is dedicated to the Russian businessman Mikhail Khodorkovsky, once the richest man in the country and said to be among the top twenty richest men in the world, though now his affluence has melted away. But the dedication is not the result of his wealth, but of injustice. Khodorkovsky's opposition to Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin, both of which he accused of gross corruption, resulted in an alleged conspiracy to arrest and detain him on fraud charges...
Copyright © 12 June 2011