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No Return to Normality

No Borders Orchestra

Conductor: Premil Petrović

Soloist: Vladimir Kostov, violin

Union Hall, Maribor

John Adams: Shaker Loops
Max Richter: Vivaldi Recomposed
Ivan Božičević: Rethink! (Trailer) Symphony of Exigent Transformation
Richard Strauss: Metamorphosen for 23 solo strings

By European standards, the No Borders Orchestra (NBO) is a unique group of musicians. It brings together excellent professional instrumentalists from the different religious and ethnic groups of the nations comprising the Western Balkans. Rising above political differences, the orchestra demonstrates that the most important humanistic goals can unite people of great differences, even those in active conflict. This is the foundation of their dual mission: to make music at the highest artistic level while raising awareness of burning social issues.

The No Borders Orchestra also shows that music is not just something performed for a select audience in dark concert halls, but can and must overcome individual differences between people and contribute to the common good. There is probably no greater challenge that requires a more humanistic approach than that which the world faces following a global pandemic. Now is the time  for humanity to come together, forget about differences and commit to a common goal more important than individual interests. The musicians of the NBO believe that their experience bringing  together people from the Balkans through music can serve as a model for today’s post-coronavirus world. 

For this year’s project, the No Borders Orchestra has joined a number of high-profile artists and scientists in an open letter to European political elites urging it to avoid a “return to normality” following the pandemic, saying, “Pollution, climate change and the destruction of our remaining natural zones, has brought the world to a breaking point. For these reasons, along with  increasing social inequalities, we believe it is unthinkable to ‘go back to normal’. We need transformation, a profound overhaul of our goals, values, and economies. We must act now.”

The theme of the program is transformation: both in and through music, and presents the minimalist piece Shaker Loops, one of the most frequently performed works by the prominent American  composer John Adams, transformations of Antonio Vivaldi’s concertos for solo violin The Four Seasons as reimagined with modern ears by composer Max Richter, and as the crown jewel, the  magnificent Metamorphosen (“Metamorphoses”) for strings by Richard Strauss, a reflection of the composer’s emotional state at the painful destruction he witnessed at the end of World War II. The program also presents a small taste (a “trailer”) of a major work being written by the renowned Croatian composer Ivan Božičević, a commission by the No Borders Orchestra, titled Symphony of  Urgent Transformation and which summarizes the message of the closing evening of this year’s festival. 

Tickets: 25 € / Senior 20 € / Students, Disability 12,50 €
Discounted tickets can be purchased at the Information office of Narodni dom Maribor or at the concert venue up to an hour before the concert.

Concert is part of the Orchestra Series 2021/2022, for season ticket holders and the general public.

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