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Professor Arlene Sierra symphony premieres receive audience and critical acclaim

27 June 2022

Dr Arlene Sierra

Premieres of Professor Arlene Sierra’s Nature and Bird Symphonies, performed by Thierry Fischer and the Utah Symphony, have received rave reviews.

Arlene Sierra is professor at the School of Music, and Composer-In-Association with the Utah Symphony.

Esteemed Swiss conductor Thierry Fischer led the U.S. premiere of “Nature Symphony” (a BBC Philharmonic / Radio Three commission) and the world premiere of “’Bird Symphony”, a new Utah Symphony commission.

Of the world premiere of Bird Symphony, the Utah Arts Review commented: “After hearing [Sierra’s] Nature Symphony last week and her tone poem Aquilo earlier in the season, it was thrilling to hear her apply her distinctive voice to a powerful new piece that provided a triumphant capstone to her season-long collaboration with the orchestra.

“…Sierra’s Bird Symphony shares many similarities with her Nature Symphony, including its motivic development and use of layered ostinati to imitate natural processes. In the new work, most of the motivic material came from actual bird calls, but Sierra developed them into something new, ecstatic, and far from its avian inspiration.”

Professor Arlene Sierra said: "Hearing these fabulous performances of my two symphonies by the Utah Symphony and Maestro Fischer was an unforgettable experience. I am grateful to them for their artistry and commitment, and to the Leverhulme Foundation for the research fellowship that has made this and related projects possible."

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