Transfigured Night pairs masterworks of the First and Second Viennese Schools – Haydn’s first and second cello concertos, along with Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht, from which the album takes its title.
The album marks the first collaboration of Weilerstein’s new multi-season role as Artistic Partner of Norway’s celebrated string orchestra, the Trondheim Soloists, led by Artistic Director and concertmaster Geir Inge Lotsberg.
On her upcoming album, Alisa states:
“Schoenberg fled Vienna in 1934, four years before my grandparents escaped. So, as a young artist, nowhere in my imagination was the possibility of duality and contradiction made more manifest than in the history of that city. A culture that gave birth to some of the greatest achievements in the art form that I had chosen to pursue could, in the same breath, harbor sentiments and sanction behavior antithetical to music’s transcendent promise.
It might be fitting then, in the spirit of grappling with these odd realities, that this album was conceived in the most ‘un-Viennese’ location: the sweeping white landscapes and rugged fjords of northern Norway. In late April, patches of frozen snow surrounded an 11th century church where I spent twenty-one hours rehearsing and recording these three pieces with the Trondheim Soloists. Although all three had long occupied the back of my mind as potential recording projects, it wasn’t until last September, when I first had the opportunity to collaborate with these artists, that I knew I had found the ideal partners for an album of this scope and intensity.
I always considered the chamber music setting as my native environment, and the small orchestra intimacy of the Haydn concerti along with the dynamic range of the Schoenberg allowed the session to feel both big and small. This, coupled with the personal relationship I developed with my artistic partners, made for a uniquely intimate experience. I believe this comes through in the performances that I am thrilled to be sharing with you here.”
Since the ensemble was founded 30 years ago, the Trondheim Soloists have become one of Norway’s leading chamber orchestras, winning international renown with a sound so distinctive in its Nordic clarity and openness that Classic FM has dubbed it “the Trondheim sound.”
After launching their partnership with Transfigured Night, Weilerstein and the ensemble look forward to a Scandinavian tour in early September, with tours of Europe and the U.S. planned for seasons to come.