BBC NOW: Becoming Ocean

Friday 22 May 2020, 7.30pm

BBC Hoddinott Hall, Wales Millennium Centre

Composer Piece Duration Listen
David Roche New work
World premiere
Huw Watkins Symphony 22'
John Luther Adams Become Ocean 42'

BBC National Orchestra of Wales

Conductor: Geoffrey Patterson

“The loveliest apocalypse in musical history.” New Yorker

What a way to end the Festival. As the climax of this year’s exploration of music and nature we present John Luther Adams’ epic, Pulitzer Prize-winning Become Ocean, performed by BBC National Orchestra of Wales.

The piece is inspired by the Alaskan wilderness, with Luther Adams saying “Life on this earth first emerged from the sea. As the polar ice melts and sea level rises, we humans find ourselves facing the prospect that once again we may quite literally become ocean”.

Sound swirls between three groups of musicians positioned separately on stage, so Become Ocean is a piece you can only fully experience live.

Our closing concert also features the Welsh premiere of Huw Watkins’ only Symphony, a dramatic, punchy work premiered in 2017, and a festival commission by young Welsh composer David Roche.




With thanks to The Fidelio Charitable Trust for supporting the world premiere of David Roche’s new work.