Symphony No. 12, Lodger, lyrics by David Bowie and Brian Eno (world premiere, LA Phil commission with generous support from Lenore S. and Bernard A. Greenberg)
Length: c. 40 minutes
Orchestration: Piccolo, 2 flutes (2 = piccolo), 3 oboes (3 = English horn), 3 clarinets (2 = E-flat clarinet, 3 = bass clarinet), 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, percussion (glockenspiel, marimba, xylophone), timpani, strings, solo organ, and solo vocalist
First Los Angeles Philharmonic performance: world premiere
About this Piece
The plan to turn Bowie’s Berlin Trilogy – Low, Heroes, and Lodger – into three symphonies had been in my mind for some time. David Bowie and his musical collaborator, Brian Eno, had accepted my proposal and I complied first with the Low Symphony (1992) and then Heroes Symphony (1996).
It would be more than 20 years later before I completed the trilogy with Lodger, now being premiered on January 10, 2019, by the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
I had stayed in touch with David over the years and he knew of my plans to complete the Trilogy. The main difference between this final work [and the others] is the prominence of the text. In this case, the Symphony is based on seven of the ten original lyrics from the original Lodger recording.
Angélique Kidjo is for me the first choice as singer and interpreter of the new work, and I am most pleased with the enthusiasm and accomplishment which she has brought to the performance.
- Philip Glass