Work of the Week - Michael Tippett: Divertimento on "Sellinger´s Round"

The Divertimento on "Sellinger´s Round" for chamber orchestra is one of Sir Michael Tippett’s most popular concert works. Commissioned by Paul Sacher and written between 1953 and 1954, around the same time as Tippett’s celebrated Piano Concerto, Divertimento has been performed around the globe since its premiere in Zurich 56 years ago.

Currently, Britten Sinfonia directed by Pekka Kuusisto is touring the slow second movement, A Lament, throughout Europe. The final mainland Europe performance will take place in Innsbruck, Austria on 2nd February, before the tour continues around the UK with dates in Cambridge (5th March), Bradford on Avon (6th), Totnes (7th), London (8th) Cockermouth (9th), Southampton (11th), Norwich (12th).

The work itself is full of early music references and includes quotes by Purcell, Gibbons, Arne, Field, Sullivan as well as a variation on the traditional tune "Sellinger´s Round" which appears in each of the five movements.




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