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The UK premiere of Roxanna Panufnik's Faithful Journey

  • Written By: John Hodgson
  • Published: Wed, 21 Nov 2018 10:57 GMT

In the second of a series of short films, created in partnership with the CBSO, John Hodgson, joins Stephen Maddock OBE, CEO of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) to discuss the UK premiere of Roxanna Panufnik's Faithful Journey - A mass for Poland.

Co-commissioned by the CBSO and the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Faithful Journey received its world premiere in Katowice, Poland on November 9, performed by the PNRSO. Its UK premiere takes place in Birmingham's Symphony Hall on November 21, when soprano Mary Bevan will repeat her solo contribution, this time joined by the CBSO, CBSO Chorus and CBSO Children's Chorus conducted by Mirga Grazinyte-Tyla, returning for the first time after maternity leave, in a programme which also includes highlights from Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker.

The piece celebrates both the the centenary of Poland's becoming an Independent State and also pays tribute to Roxanna's Anglo-Polish roots. Her father, Andrzej Panufnik, bravely defected from Poland in the mid 1950s before settling in the UK to become principal conductor of the CBSO in Birmingham, Roxanna is particularly moved at this linking-up between Poland and Birmingham. "When my father was struggling through his early years of political asylum in the UK, Birmingham was especially good to him," she explains, giving this performance particular poignancy next week.

John Hodgson tells Stephen Maddock OBE, why Smith & Williamson chose to support this concert as part of their sponsorship and why this performance particularly stood out. Watch the short video below.

Smith & Williamson are proud to sponsor the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra which includes exclusive sponsorship of November’s UK premiere of Roxanna Panufnik’s choral work ‘Faithful Journey – A Mass for Poland’, written to mark the 100th anniversary of Poland regaining its independence.

Quote taken from an article featured in the Birmingham Post.

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