For this performance, travelling musicians came from all over Europe to the Amsterdam Concertgebouw to make music with their classically-trained fellows from the Netherlands Wind Ensemble. The wind players from Fanfare Ciocarlia trudged through the snow surrounding their Romanian home of Zece Prăjini in order to reach the station and catch the train to Amsterdam.
François Castiello from folk group Bratsch grabbed his accordion, and looked at the arrangements he was to play with the Netherlands Wind Ensemble on the way to the Netherlands. Superstar Esma Redzepova bid farewell to her family in Skopje to come and ‘sing the house down’ in Amsterdam. Composer Stevan Kovacz telephoned in the last few changes, and the night before their big Concertgebouw début, there were four young composers who didn’t get a wink of sleep. Rooted in centuries-old traditions, gypsy folk music is here juxtaposed against tender, rough, grating, dream-like and rousing twentieth-century works by Chick Corea, Michael Daugherty, Ornette Coleman, Alexander Raskatov and Simon Burgers. The final New Year’s concert of the previous century is a celebration of music from the present and future, alongside heart-wrenching sounds from the Balkans.
Soloists Esma Redzepova (voice), François Castiello (accordion), Fanfare Ciocarlia
Young composers Claudia Rumondor, Fanny de Ruiter, Tomas Hendriks, Kara van der Laan