Vivier: Love Songs

Sat 7 May 2022, 8pm
Purcell Room at Queen Elizabeth Hall
Classical music
From £12
past event
past event
Vivier: Love Songs, performed by Soundstreams

‘Nobody who hears Claude Vivier is quite the same afterwards.’

The Globe and Mail

Written straight from the heart, Vivier’s songs give voice to his longing for love and reveal the unparalleled brilliance of his musical imagination.

The composer lived a colourful and often bizarre life before he was tragically murdered in Paris in 1983, a year after moving to the city from his native Montréal.

As a musician, Vivier knew few boundaries. He was a disciple of Stockhausen whose own works would make his avant-garde teacher’s sound dated.

They combine languages, traditions and schools, reflect his cosmopolitan travels and make strange, unusual demands of their performers.

Vivier is slowly being recognised in his native Canada and beyond as the maverick genius he was. His works were, according to his biographer Bob Gilmore, a way of ‘confronting loneliness, darkness, terror; of negotiating a relationship with God; of voicing an insatiable longing for acceptance and love.’

Forming part of a special focus on the music of Claude Vivier, the Southbank Centre is pleased to present a selection of the composer’s most sincere and blazingly original songs for voice, piano and percussion.

This is music that sings of love, religion, the universe and the central questions of life.

The performance concludes with the world premiere of Christopher Mayo’s personal homage to Vivier, an artist truly ahead of his time.

Vivier: Love Songs is kindly supported by Cockayne - Grants for the Arts and The London Community Foundation.

Cockayne - The London Community Foundation Sponsors logo
  • Soundstreams
  • Vivier: Love Songs for 4 female voices & 3 male voices; Hymnen an die Nacht for soprano & piano
  • Interval
  • Vivier: Shiraz for piano; 5 Chansons pour percussion
  • Christopher Mayo: Oceano Nox (UK premiere)

Need to know

This show is part of a series dedicated to the music of Claude Vivier, presented by Soundstreams and the London Sinfonietta.

Follow the links below to explore the rest of the series:
Long Song of Solitude, Friday 6 May

Musik für das Ende, Sunday 8 May

Dates & times

Sat 7 May 2022, 8pm

Approximate run time: 110 mins.

Run times may vary by up to 20 minutes as they can be affected by last-minute programme changes, intervals and encores.


  • Standard entryFrom £12*
  • Concessions25%**

* Excludes £3.50 booking fee.

Book as early as you can to ensure the best choice of tickets. Ticket prices may be adjusted without notice to reflect demand.

** Limited availability. Read about concessions.

Tickets can only be sold through the Southbank Centre and our authorised agents, and can't be resold. You can return your tickets to the Southbank Centre for a credit voucher up to 48 hours before the event. Tickets resold on any third-party platforms will become invalid.

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Multi-buy discount

Classical Music: Spring/Summer 2022

As part of our classical music multi-buy offer, book multiple Spring/Summer concerts in the same transaction to receive a discount:

  • 3 – 4 events: 10% discount
  • 5 – 7 events: 15% discount
  • 8 – 10 events: 20% discount
  • 11 – 14 events: 25% discount
  • 15+ events: 30% discount

Discounts apply to selected events from February until June 2022 inclusive. Offer can't be combined with Autumn/Winter multi-buy.

See all events in our Spring/Summer multi-buy offer


Purcell Room

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Open 90 minutes before an event until the end of the event. Closed at all other times.

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Frequently asked questions

Get an overview of the seating layout of the Purcell Room by downloading our seating plan.

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An accessible toilet is located in the foyer.

A Changing Places toilet is located on Level 1 Royal Festival Hall next to the JCB Glass Lift, for the exclusive use of disabled people who need personal assistance to use the toilet.

The facility includes a height-adjustable bench, tracking hoist system, a centrally-placed toilet, a height-adjustable basin and a shower. Please visit the Welcome Desk on Level 2, Royal Festival Hall, where a member of staff can provide you with the key. You can also use the phone next to the Changing Places toilet to speak to a member of staff. The facility is open daily 10am – 11pm.


The Queen Elizabeth Hall and Purcell Room cloakroom is closed. You won’t be able to bring any bags over 40 x 25 x 25cm into the venues, so please leave large bags at home.

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Purcell Room is located in Queen Elizabeth Hall. For step-free access please use Royal Festival Hall JCB glass lift to Level 2 and enter via Riverside Terrace.

Talk to a member of staff at the auditorium entrance if you have a disability that means you can’t queue, or you need extra time to take your seat. They can arrange priority entry for you as soon as the doors open.

Please bear with us while we update our access map to reflect the refurbishment of the Royal Festival Hall’s Level 2 foyer spaces. The step-free routes remain the same.

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