“The call of the owl is like a cry of pain, of life and of death. It’s a call for humanity to return to its mission, to the reason we exist, and the question of what our purpose is.” With this carefully chosen programme, Stotijn invites us into a truly contemplative musical landscape.
Stotijn has crafted an album of dark-hued, mysterious beauty, its evocative title drawn from a poem by John Haines. Owls have a deeply personal significance for the singer. “I live in the woods,” she explains, “and there I have spent hours listening to the tawny owl, just hearing the call. I have even tried to imitate it – it has a high A and sometimes a G.
Christianne Stotijn makes her Lincoln Center debut with the New York Philharmonic this week. The Dutch mezzo-soprano sings the solo part written for her by Thomas Adès in his towering Totentanz, a tribute to Lutoslawski with orchestra, mezzo-soprano and baritone.
She gave the work’s world premiere with Simon Keenlyside as vocal partner at the 2013 Proms, where her ‘range of vocal colours and power created a constantly metamorphosing play of sound and character’ (The Arts Desk).