Commissioned by Second Movement Zátopek is a chamber opera with music by Emily Howard and libretto by Selma Dmitrijevic, inspired by the life and times of iconic Czech long distance runner Emil Zátopek (1922-2000). At the 1952 Helsinki Olympics Zátopek achieved a sensational hat-trick winning gold at 5000m, 10,000m and the marathon, with a winning time at 5000m of 14 minutes and 6 seconds. Zátopek! is a thrilling near real time musical recreation of this legendary race and celebration of its extraordinary winner.
New Music 20x12 is the brainchild of Jillian Barker and David Cohen who wanted to put new music at the heart of the Olympic celebrations in 2012. It is delivered by PRS for Music Foundation in partnership with BBC Radio 3, London 20x12 and NMC Recordings. For a full list of funding partners click here.
About Emily Howard
Emily Howard was born in Liverpool in 1979. She spent her formative years learning the cello, playing chess (she was British Junior Girls Chess Champion for 6 years) and composing for local orchestras including The Liverpool Mozart Orchestra. Following a Masters in Composition with Adam Gorb at the Royal Northern College of Music, gaining a double distinction as well as the Soroptimist International Award for Composers, Emily is currently completing a PhD in Composition with John Casken at The University of Manchester, supported by a Victor Sayer Scholarship.
Commissions and performances include Dualities (RLPO’s Ensemble 10/10, Clark Rundell), Lachrymose (Southbank Sinfonia, Nicholas Cleobury), Lachrimae Antiquae Novae for the LSO Discovery Panufnik Young Composers’ Scheme, and Magnetite, commissioned by Liverpool European Capital of Culture 2008 for the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra to open the RLPO’s Capital of Culture season under Vasily Petrenko. In July 2008, Liverpool – The World in One City, a concerto for solo basset clarinet, choir and orchestra united the Liverpool Youth Orchestra with local primary school choirs (300 children) and clarinettist Mark Simpson (BBC Young Musician 2006) in a concert to celebrate the Capital of Culture at the Anglican Cathedral in Liverpool.
Recent works include Wild Clematis in Winter for The NMC Songbook, Songs from Dickens (Loré Lixenberg / Gerald Davidson / The Fidelio Trio) and a UBS commission Solar for the London Symphony Orchestra and Nicholas Collon. Emily is a recipient of a Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award for Composers 2008. She teaches composition at the RNCM Junior School and the University of Leeds and works on Composition Outreach Projects with the Manchester Camerata.
Ensemble 10 / 10
10/10 was founded by two RLPO members, clarinettistNicholas Cox and cellist Hilary Browning. Since its first concert on 22 November 1997 at 10.10pm, it has become established as a regular feature of Liverpool concert life, under the baton of conductor Clark Rundell.
10/10’s concerts are an eclectic mixture of new commissions, world premieres and contemporary classics given in an informal atmosphere. The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic has commissioned a huge range of UK composers for the Ensemble, as well as many from abroad. 10/10 explores the best new music from around the world, but equally it actively supports local composers – concerts always include music from the North west.
Ensemble 10/10 is the winner of two awards at the 2009 RPS Music Awards, the Concert Series and Festivals category and, along with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, the Ensemble category.
Second Movement is a UK opera company which works with young artists on professional productions of new work and rarely performed and risk taking modern repertoire. Past productions include the UK stage premiere of Rothschild’s Violin by Fleishmann/Shostakovich, the world premiere of Second Movement commission Fade by young US composer Stefan Weisman and a 2006 production of Menotti’s The Medium (2011 revival tour to Northern Ireland). The company has strong links to the Czech Republic having presented the UK premiere of The Knife’s Tears by Bohuslav Martinů, revived in 2010 and toured to Brno and Prague (“stunning” The Independent on Sunday, “superb” Divadlní Noviny) and the UK Premiere in 2010 of scenes from Martinů rarity The Three Wishes or the Inconstancy of Life. Second Movement also hosts rough for opera, a quarterly performance platform at the Cockpit Theatre in Marylebone for young and opera makers to show new work in development.
Clark attended Northwestern University in Chicago, studying conducting with John P Paynter and trombone with Frank Crisafulli of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and was subsequently awarded a Junior Fellowship to study conducting with Timothy Reynish at the RNCM. He regularly conducts the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, with whom he made his debut in 1987, as well as others including the BBC Philharmonic, the Hallé and the Philharmonia Orchestra, with whom he recently performed at the Royal Albert Hall. As an arranger, he collaborated with Louis Andriessen on a suite from the composer’s recent opera Writing to Vermeer, with Mark-Anthony Turnage on an expanded version of Turnage’s Invention on Solitude and with Dutch Latin jazz group Zuco 103 on a joint concert with the Residentie Orchestra. He is also Artistic Director of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic’s new music group, Ensemble 10/10 and makes his debut with the Schoenberg/Asko Ensemble in Amsterdam in 2007 in a programme which includes a world premiere by Michel van der Aa.
The performance of Zatopek! was recorded by the BBC at the The Epstein Theatre, Liverpool, and was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 on 16 June 2012.
The work is now available on NMC Recordings in mp3 and FLAC download formats.
Special thanks to Jerwood Charitable Foundation for making this New Music 20x12 commission possible. New Music 20x12 is the brainchild of Jillian Barker and David Cohen who wanted to put new music at the heart of the Olympic celebrations in 2012. It is delivered by PRS for Music Foundation in partnership with BBC Radio 3, London 20x12 and NMC Recordings. For a full list of funding partners click here.