The Rite of Spring is a ballet and orchestral concert work by the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. When first released in 1913, the premiere incited a riot due to its avant-garde music and unconventional choreography. One of the particularly negative press reviews came from Henri Quittard, a critic for Le Figaro, who described the work as " a laborious and puerile barbarity".
Drawing inspiration from folk music encountered in Ustilug, Stravinsky sought to recreate a primal landscape where tribal people celebrated their connection to the earth. To achieve this, he adapted modern orchestral instruments in unconventional ways, pushing them to their extremes.
The Rite of Spring is powerful for its innovative approach to capturing the raw essence of ancient pagan rituals via use of rhythm and orchestration. While the piece shocked audiences at the time, it ultimately had a profound influence on later composers.
Text by: Deyun Lin/Licha Stelaus Productions
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