Sibelius’s rarely heard cantata The Captive Queen (Vapautettu kuningatar) will be performed in Bedford on Saturday 8 February 2020.
The concert also includes music by Beethoven, Strauss, Desyatnikov, Ešenvalds, Bruckner and Verdi. It is performed by the Bedford Great Ouse Orchestra and Choir conducted by Christopher Ridley (timpanist of the Royal Opera House Covent Garden). This is a charity concert in aid of the Bedford Homeless Partnership.
Sibelius’s single-movement cantata was written for a patriotic event in 1906, celebrating the centenary of the birth of the statesman and philosopher Johan Vilhelm Snellman (1806–81), an influential champion of the Finnish language who played a major role in the establishment of a Finnish cultural identity. It has a text by Paavo Cajander (1846–1913), telling of a queen, imprisoned in a castle, who is liberated by a young hero. Sibelius himself conducted its first performance in Helsinki on 12th May 1906.
Venue: St Andrew’s Church, Bedford
7.30 pm, Saturday 8 February 2020
Tickets: £10 from eventbrite.co.uk or 07970 751270
Facebook: Great Ouse Orchestra
Of the four Sibelius manuscripts auctioned at Sotheby’s on 24 May 2016, two found buyers.
Pohjola’s Daughter (Lot 149) was sold for £221,000 (including buyer’s premium).
Pages from The Captive Queen (Lot 152) were sold for £32,500 (including buyer’s premium).
The piano transcription of Pelléas et Mélisande (Lot 151) and pages from the Violin Concerto (Lot 150) remained unsold.
Several major Sibelius manuscripts are being sold at auction by Sotheby’s, London, on 24 May 2016.
It is rare for major Sibelius manuscripts to be sold, and even rarer for a number of important manuscripts to be offered at the same time. All of the works in question are among the pieces that were published by Robert Lienau in the first decade of the twentieth century.
Foremost among these is the autograph manuscript of Pohjola’s Daughter; Sotheby’s remark that ‘no manuscript of this importance and calibre has appeared on the market for over ten years’. Also on sale are the primary sources for the final version of the Violin Concerto (although most of the autograph score is lost) and the complete piano transcription of the incidental music to Pelléas et Mélisande. Finally there is a set of eight autograph fragments, plus a score containing other revisions, pertaining to the male choir version of the patriotic cantata The Captive Queen.
The Pelléas manuscript is of particular interest because it contains two previously unknown piano transcriptions of movements that were omitted from the published piano version of the suite.
The estimated price range for these items ranges from £30,000–50,000 (The Captive Queen) to £200,000–300,000 (Pohjola’s Daughter).
Links to Sotheby’s auction pages:
Pohjola’s Daughter (Lot 149) — — Violin Concerto (Lot 150)
Pelléas et Mélisande (Lot 151) — — The Captive Queen (Lot 152)