Jóhannsson: Last and First Men – LSO
Jóhann Jóhannsson sadly died in February, shortly after this concert was announced. After consultation with Jóhann’s family, it has been agreed this performance will go ahead in tribute to him.
We’ve made the decision not to replace Jóhann – instead, recordings that Jóhann made of his own parts will be played live alongside the London Symphony Orchestra in a performance of his breathtaking multimedia work, Last and First Men. Based on the cult science fiction novel by Olaf Stapledon, it uses music, film and Tilda Swinton’s narration to form a poetic meditation on memory and loss.
It sits somewhere between fiction and documentary, placing images of a decaying futuristic landscape – filmed in 16mm black and white in the former Yugoslav republics – against Jóhannsson’s haunting orchestral score. Jóhannsson spent seven years crafting the work before its premiere at the 2017 Manchester International Festival.