Krzysztof Penderecki

A new work by Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki was given its world premiere Sunday night during the Flanders Festival at the National Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Brussels. Entitled ‘Dies Illa’ and scored for three soloists, three mixed choirs and orchestra, the work was commissioned by the Flanders Festival and is dedicated to the victims of the First World War. The performance was conducted by Estonian conductor Andres Mustonen. Nikolay Didenko, Johanna Rusanen and Poland’s Angieszka Rehlis were the soloists. The commemoration of World War I is the theme of the Flanders Festival.

The work brought together 22 choirs from Belgium and 17 from other countries, with a total of 1,300 singers joining the Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra at the Koekelberg Basilica. The program also included music by the Belgian pianist and composer André Devaere, who was killed in action in November 1914, aged 24.

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