On 10 December, 1998, when receiving the Nobel Prize in Literature, José Saramago addressed the Swedish Academy, making his speech in front of kings and queens, heads of state, fellow prize-winners and the remaining guests. At that moment, he reminded his audience that it was the fiftieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Two decades on from the speech that the Portuguese writer born in Azinhaga delivered in Stockholm, the Foundation that bears his name now recalls the seventieth anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Human Rights and insists on the need for an ethics of responsibility, sharing in the Universal Declaration of Human Duties in a necessary symmetry with the UN Charter of Human Rights.
At this celebratory concert, the Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa, conducted by Jonas Alber, will present the world premiere of António Pinho Vargas’ Memorial, based on the reading of three works by José Saramago. The programme will be completed with the performance of Shostakovich’s Chamber Symphony, Op. 110a, in an arrangement for string orchestra transcribed by Rudolph Barshai.