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Work of the Week – Christian Jost: The Woman in the Gardens of Suzhou

On 1 December, Christian Jost’s The Woman in the Gardens of Suzhou will receive its German premiere at the Congresshalle Saarbrücken with the Saarländische Staatsorchester conducted by Jonathon Heyward. The concert forms part of the orchestra’s “Artist in Focus” series which will feature Jost both as composer and conductor throughout the 2019/20 season.
Originally commissioned by the Suzhou Symphony Orchestra, The Woman in the Gardens of Suzhou received its world premiere on 27 November 2018 in China. Over the course of 15 minutes, Jost’s work explores the architecture and history associated with a series of nine classical gardens which together form an UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Christian Jost – The Woman in the Gardens of Suzhou: procurement of contents

Titles are very important to me because I want to create a specific space of association for the listeners. I’m less and less concerned with what sounds I want to compose. I am much more concerned with conveying content than constellations, which then have an abstract size. When listening to contemporary music, you can see a lot in a larger arc. A complex structure can be heard in a larger picture. This larger image needs a really strong and exciting content in the first place. – Christian Jost

The Woman in the Gardens of Suzhou will be performed by the orchestra again on 2 December, after which the orchestra’s next “Artist in Focus” concert will take place on 16 February 2020, where Jost conducts two of his own works Lovers – Sky Song and Dichterliebe.

Photo: Joe Quiao