Jóhann Jóhannsson: Last and First Men

Film and live score

Sat 1 Dec 2018 8.00pm - 10.00pm
Barbican Hall, London

JÓHANN JÓHANNSSON Last and First Men

Daníel Bjarnason conductor
London Symphony Orchestra

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The London Symphony Orchestra performs Jóhann Jóhannsson’s breathtaking multimedia work; a requiem for the last of humankind.

Based on the cult Science Fiction novel by Olaf Stapledon, Last and First Men uses music, film and Tilda Swinton’s mournful 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.

Having passed away in February, we've made the decision not to replace Jóhann – instead, the performance will go ahead in tribute to him, and recordings that Jóhann made of his own parts will be played live alongside the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Daníel Bjarnason.


Produced by the Barbican

Commissioned by Manchester International Festival, the Barbican Centre and Sydney Opera House

Film co-produced by Flanders Festival Kortrijk with the support of Gone West, Province of West Flanders