Celebrating composer Sofia Gubaidulina at 90

Posted on: October 25, 2021

“The composer Sofia Gubaidulina … turns 90 on Sunday,” writes J.S. Marcus in Wednesday’s (10/20) New York Times. “Andris Nelsons … will lead Gubaidulina’s 2003 work ‘The Light of the End’ with the Boston Symphony Orchestra this week.… Her birthday is being celebrated with a sustained burst of high-profile events. On Friday Nelsons and the Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig, Germany, will release a Deutsche Grammophon recording of ‘The Light of the End’ and … her third violin concerto, the angst-filled ‘Dialogue: I and You,’ … and ‘The Wrath of God,’ which begins with a blast of Wagner tubas and, 17 minutes later, abruptly ends…. In the coming months, her music … will be played in cities including Moscow, where she lived for decades; Munich; Berlin; Cleveland; Tallinn, Estonia; Katowice, Poland; and Utrecht, the Netherlands…. In her 1996 Viola Concerto, written for Yuri Bashmet and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, she introduced the rumbling power of Wagner tubas…. ‘The Canticle of the Sun’ [composed for cellist Mstislav] Rostropovich … a small choir and percussion … has become one of her most performed works…. Her birthday celebrations will culminate … next season [with] a new piece commissioned by the Gewandhaus and Boston Symphony.”