Skip to main content

Bryce Dessner - Artist in Residence

Bryce Dessner - Artist in Residence


Bryce Dessner - Artist in Residence

National Symphony Orchestra
André de Ridder conductor 
Bryce Dessner guitar
David Chalmin guitar 
Katia Labèque piano
Marielle Labèque piano
Bryce Dessner St. Carolyn by the Sea 
Bryce Dessner Concerto for Two Pianos [Irish Premiere]
Stravinsky Petrushka (1947 version)

An exciting opportunity to hear the Irish premiere of Artist-in-Residence Bryce Dessner’s athletic and animated Concerto for Two Pianos played by its dedicatees, the remarkable piano duo of sisters Katia and Marielle Labèque.

Beat Generation guru Jack Kerouac is the inspiration for St. Carolyn by the Sea featuring the composer himself on guitar.

Stravinsky’s ballet Petrushka is a nightmarish tale of puppets coming murderously to life in music of burlesque brilliance.

Did you know?

Dessner’s first piece for the Labèque sisters was a piano duo arrangement of his 2016 piano quartet, El Chan.

Dessner’s favourite composer is Bartók. He regards his Divertimento as ‘the pinnacle of string writing’.

Stravinsky’s Petrushka was composed in 1911 but revised for smaller orchestral forces in 1947.

Listen out for…

The contribution of the guitars in Dessner’s St. Carolyn by the Sea that translates Kerouac’s surreal hallucinations into an evocative soundscape.

The simple, four-note motif beginning his Concerto that provides the germ for the intricate detailing and complexity that follows.  

Echoes of Steve Reich, jazz musician Dave Brubeck and, in a grandstanding moment by snare drum, Dessner’s own rock music alter ego.

The borrowings of folk music in Petrushka, from the Easter Song at its beginning to the Gypsy dance in its final scene.

The first (and repeated) use of the famous ‘Petrushka chord’ in the second scene. A collision of two dissonant keys, it is introduced by twinned clarinets heralding the first appearance of the titular puppet.

A combination of two highly dissonant keys, we hear it first played by pairs of clarinets sounding like a cacophonous car horn.

Presented by NCH

Book Now
Friday 11 Apr 2025
Main Stage
€15, €27.50, €35, €42.50, €49

Discount Multi-Buy Packages Available Here

Post-concert talk: Bryce Dessner, André de Ridder & Katia & Marielle Labèque piano in conversation with John Kelly - starts 15 minutes after Main Stage performance ends

Share this event
Facebook twitter