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World Premiere of Jörg Widmann's Au cœur de Paris with the Orchestre de Paris

Nov. 01, 2017

World Premiere of Jörg Widmann's <em>Au cœur de Paris</em> with the Orchestre de Paris

Jörg Widmann’s latest orchestral work, Au cœur de Paris (“In the heart of Paris”), received its world premiere performance on November 1 with the Orchestre de Paris, led by Daniel Harding. Widmann, who is the orchestra’s Artist-in-Residence, joined the program for a performance of his Fantasie for solo clarinet.

Au cœur de Paris was written on commission from the Orchestre de Paris in celebration of its 50th anniversary. For the work, Widmann took inspiration from two of Edith Piaf’s most recognizable chansons about love: La vie en rose and La ciel de Paris. In La vie en rose, a woman sings about her immortal love to a man, while La ciel de Paris is a declaration of love to the city.

Piaf’s melodies linger in the mind long after the song has finished playing. Widmann teases the audience by quoting these melodies, orchestrating them to pair the deep emotion with a musical lightness. He writes:

There are always sounds at the beginning. These sounds gradually solidify over weeks, they compress. During this time I do not write. Then suddenly…I cannot stand it so I write, I write furiously until the piece is finished.

For more information on Jörg Widmann, visit

Jörg Widmann
Au cœur de Paris (2017)
little chanson fantasy for orchestra
4(2, 3.pic).4.4(3.bcl), 4.cbcl)3.cbsn-4.4.4(4.btbn).1-timp.4perc-2hp.cel.acc-str

Fantasie (1993)
for solo clarinet