Richard Bratby

Bingo with Birtwistle

Plus: Aurora Orchestra’s Beethoven Fifth, played entirely from memory, was a nerve-shredding experience

A pregnant silence, a peaty belch from the tuba, and the scrape of brass on brass as gears lock into position and judder forward. It’s almost worth making a bingo card for a Harrison Birtwistle première these days, and I’m not complaining. His last big orchestral work, Deep Time, showed worrying signs of him mellowing into some sort of late period.

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