Five American orchestras co-commission multimedia score from Mason Bates

Posted on: June 7, 2019

“The Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Pittsburgh, and National symphonies have co-commissioned a ‘multimedia work that integrates film and pre-recorded sound with live orchestra performance’ titled World’s Greatest Synth: The Making of the Orchestra,” writes Nicholas Beard in Thursday’s (subscription required). “The commission recipient is Mason Bates, among the very few composers who successfully mixes electronics with (and usually in a) symphony orchestra. The premiere is set for March of 2020 by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in Symphony Hall at one of its school concerts. Edwin Outwater conducts. For Chicago, the commission honors the 100th anniversary of its concerts for children … Bates, Musical America’s 2018 Composer of the Year, was the CSO’s composer in residence from 2000-2015 and now occupies that position at the Kennedy Center. The orchestra describes the work as a kind of updated version of Britten’s Young Persons Guide to the Orchestra, calling it a ‘concerto for orchestra and animation.’… Collaborators in the project include writer and director Gary Rydstrom, who has won Academy Awards for sound … [and] is also a noted animation director. Also contributing is story artist and animator Jim Capobianco, whose credits range from Lion King to Ratatouille to the art film Leonardo.”

Posted June 7, 2019