Deutsche Grammophon to Release World Premiere Recording of ‘Émigré’ in 2024

By David Salazar

Deutsche Grammophon is set to record the world premiere of Aaron Zigman and Mark Campbell’s “Émigré.”

The 90-minute oratorio will have its world premiere on Nov. 17, 2023 at the Jaguar Shanghai Symphony Hall before heading to the U.S. for a performance at David Geffen Hall in New York City on Feb. 29, 2024. The two performances will feature Ben Bliss, Arnold Livingston Geis, Shenyang, Zhang Meigui, Andrew Dwan, Zhu Huiling and Diana Newman. Long Yu conducts.

Per an official press release, Deutsche Grammophon will record both live and studio sessions with the aim of releasing the recording in February 2024.

The work explores the story of Jewish refugees in the late 1930s who sought out a new home in Shanghai; there were reportedly 30,000 Jews who fled to Shanghai from Europe.

“In the flood of history, we cannot avoid the changes in social circumstances and human destiny, but the light and goodness of humanity is a flat boat that never sinks. She can pierce the darkness and carry the destiny of humanity and the continuity of history, sailing towards a bright and hopeful future,” said Long Yu, Music Director of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, in the press release. “I am proud to be sharing this important work, brought to life by Aaron and Mark, and to be conducting the world premiere performance and the Deutsche Grammophon recording of the piece.”

There will be additional performances of “Émigré” at the 2024 Beijing International Music Festival, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchestra Berlin. Finally, the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra will showcase the oratorio in 2025 with other international performances set to be revealed at a later date.