Join us at Senate House on 8 June for a music recital of relevant French repertoire by outstanding young pianist, Alexander Soares.

This event, part of the ‘Surrealism and music in France, 1924–52: interdisciplinary and international contexts’ conference organised by the Institute of Modern Languages Research, will include works by Boulez, Messiaen and Jolivet.

Praised by the Telegraph as a musician of ‘huge intensity’, Alexander Soares is developing a reputation as an artist of formidable technique and virtuosity, with performances of ‘diamond clarity and authority’ (‘In Tune’, BBC Radio 3).

His 2015 performance in the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s (BBCSO) ‘Boulez at 90’ celebrations received widespread critical acclaim in the media. According to the Sunday Times, the performance was a ‘brilliantly unbuttoned account’ and for the Financial Times, it was the ‘most memorable of all’.

Since a UK premiére of Tristan Murail’s work in the BBCSO Total Immersion series, contemporary French repertoire has formed a major part of Alexander’s programming. There was much evidenced of this in his debut recitals at the Royal Festival Hall, the Purcell Room and the Bridgewater Hall.

In 2014, he collaborated with Diego Masson in Messiaen’s Des Canyons aux Étoiles at Milton Court Concert Hall. The following year, he performed Boulez’s Dérive with David Corkhill at LSO St. Luke’s. His debut album, Notations and Sketches, featuring solo works by Boulez, Dutilleux and Messiaen, will be released later on this year.

The recital
When: 8 June, 5.30–6.45pm
Who: Institute of Modern Languages Research and the Open World Research Initiative Cross-language Dynamics translingual strand, with support from the Cassel Trust Fund
Where: Chancellor’s Hall, first floor, Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU

André Jolivet: Piano Sonata no. 1
Olivier Messiaen: Île de feu 1
Olivier Messiaen: Prélude (1964)
Pierre Boulez: Douze Notations
Pierre Boulez: Une page d’éphéméride

Tickets: £5.00  Book now

The links between surrealism and the emerging disciplines of ethnology and ethnomusicology redefined the concept of exoticism in France. Although the subject of a good deal of polemical debate, the connections between surrealism and music have been little explored. The conference, which culminates in what promises to be an exciting recital, initiates a transdisciplinary and international dialogue that will situate music at the heart of these debates. Find out more about the conference here.