Mariss Jansons © Priska Ketterer/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
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Mariss Jansons © Priska Ketterer/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks © Priska Ketterer/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
Choral Concert 4
Bavarian Radio Choir and Symphony Orchestra | Mariss Jansons | soloists
Swiss premiere | commissioned by musica viva of Bayerischer Rundfunk
räsonanz – Donor concert. An initiative of the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, in cooperation with LUCERNE FESTIVAL and musica viva of Bayerischer Rundfunk
Read more about the räsonanz initiative here
“I go slowly from the world / into a landscape beyond all distance,” writes Hans Sahl in his poem Strophen, which revolves around the final stages of the journey through life, before death awaits us. Wolfgang Rihm has set these verses to music in his new, evening-length choral work Requiem-Strophen, along with a text by Johannes Bobrowski, sonnets by Michelangelo, and a Psalm from the Bible. It may remind you of Ein deutsches Requiem by Johannes Brahms, which similarly does not follow the liturgy of the Mass for the Dead but instead offers a highly personal set of texts culled by the composer. And like Brahms, Rihm, too, keeps deliberate distance from the certainty of faith: “God has given us the gift of doubt. Through this he remains inextinguishably present in us,” he once remarked. Nine days after the world premiere in Munich, Rihm’s most recent score will be heard in Lucerne: a home match for the director of the LUCERNE FESTIVAL ACADEMY.
Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra © Peter Fischli/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
The Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1949. As its first Chief Conductor, Eugen Jochum helped establish the Orchestra during his 11-year tenure and brought it international renown, especially through his Bruckner performances. Succeeding him was Rafael Kubelík (1961–79), who conducted the ensemble’s first Mahler cycle and expanded its repertoire to include works by Slavic composers as well as 20th-century music. Sir Colin Davis, an acclaimed Berlioz specialist, stood at the helm from 1983 to 1992 and proved to be an equally strong advocate for the Viennese Classical era and the works of British composers. Lorin Maazel held the reins from 1993 to 2002 and led complete cycles of works by Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, Schubert, and Mahler. Since October 2003 Mariss Jansons has held the position of Chief Conductor, playing a repertoire that ranges widely, from Haydn to Shostakovich and contemporary composers. Many renowned conductors have led the Orchestra, from Otto Klemperer and Karl Böhm through Sir Georg Solti, Carlo Maria Giulini, and Leonard
Bernstein to such stars of today as Herbert Blomstedt, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Bernard Haitink, Andris Nelsons, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and Franz Welser-Möst in the 2016-17 season. The Orchestra regularly premieres new works through its musica viva series. The BR Symphony performs on tour around the world: most recently, in late autumn 2016, they concertized in Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea, and, at the beginning of 2017, in Vienna, Paris, Wrocław, Katowice, Milan, Luxembourg, and Amsterdam. Since 2004 the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra has had an annual residency at Lucerne’s Easter Festival.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 28 August 1965 with works by Bartók and Bruckner, conducted by Rafael Kubelík.
Februar 2017Other dates
Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks @ Astrid Ackermann
Bavarian Radio Choir
Founded seventy years ago, in 1946, the Bavarian Radio Choir has been performing the great choral symphonic literature and oratorios from the Baroque to the present since then, in particular with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. The latter’s music directors have regularly been in charge of the Choir’s artistic leadership: from Eugen Jochum through Rafael Kubelík, Sir Colin Davis, and Lorin Maazel to Mariss Jansons. The ensemble is especially acclaimed for its flexibility and for the stylistic diversity of its repertoire. The singers are capable of shifting effortlessly from the austere sonority of a Renaissance madrigal to a Romantic choral work or to the technical challenges posed by contemporary music – all while preserving their signature sonic homogeneity. Through its own subscription series at the Prinzregententheater in Munich, the Choir performs not only the classic works of the canon but also crossover projects and jazz literature. Serving as Artistic Director from 2005 to the summer of 2016 was the Dutch conductor Peter Dijkstra, a self-described “anti-specialist” who ensured the diversity of the programming. In the 2016-17 season, Howard Arman will become his successor. Regular tours and invitations to the major music festivals are among the Choir’s activities; the singers have also worked with such leading European orchestras as the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, and the Staatskapelle Dresden. They additionally perform concerts with such period-instrument ensembles as Concerto Köln, B’Rock, and the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. The Bavarian Radio Choir has won three Echo Klassik Awards and, in 2015, the Bavarian State Prize for Music.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 30 August 1965 with Janáčeks From the House of the Dead conducted by Rafael Kubelík.
August 2016Other dates
Mariss Jansons © Peter Meisel
Mariss Jansons was born in 1943 in Riga and is the son of conductor Ar-vīd Jansons. He studied violin, piano, and conducting at the Leningrad Conservatory, completing his training as a student of Hans Swarowsky in Vienna and of Herbert von Karajan in Salzburg. Jansons was a prize winner in the conducting competition of the Karajan Foundation in Berlin in 1971. In the same year, Evgeny Mravinsky made him his assistant at the Leningrad (now the St. Petersburg) Philharmonic. From 1979 to 2000 Jansons served as Music Director of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, and from 1997 to 2004 he was Principal Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Since 2003 he has led the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Beginning in 2004, for 11 years, he additionally led the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, which named him Honorary Conductor in 2015. Jansons has guest conducted the finest orchestras in the United States and Europe, including the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics; he has led the latter’s New Year’s concerts in 2006, 2012, and 2016. Jansons’ discography comprises many prize-winning recordings, including his Grammy-winning account of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 13. Mariss Jansons is an honorary member of the Society of Friends of Music in Vienna and of the Royal Academy of Music in London; the Berlin Philharmonic has honored him with the Bülow Medal, the City of Vienna with the Golden Medal of Honor, the State of Austria with the Honorary Cross for Science and Art, and the Federal Republic of Germany with the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit. In 2013 Jansons, who is also a member of the Bavarian Maximilian Order for Science and Art and a knight of the Order of the Netherlands Lion, received the Ernst von Siemens Music Prize, one of the most prestigious awards in the music world.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 20 April 1992 with the London Symphony Orchestra in a program of works by Weber and Strauss as well as Mahler’s First Symphony.
February 2017Other dates
Mojca Erdmann © Felix Broede/DG
A native of Hamburg, the soprano Mojca Erdmann acquired her first stage experiences in the children’s choir of the Hamburg Staatsoper. After graduating from high school she studied violin and completed her vocal training with Hans Sotin in Cologne. At the Federal German Competition in 2002 she won not only first prize but the award for Best Performer of Contemporary Music as well. Her preference for works of the present era is reflected in numerous engagements: she performed in the world premieres of Wolfgang Rihm’s monodrama Proserpina at the Schwetzingen Festival in 2009 and of his Dionysos in Salzburg in 2010; in 2012 she was cast in Rodion Shchedrin’s Cleopatra and the Serpent at the Salzburg Whitsun Festival and, in 2016, in Miroslav Srnka’s South Pole at the Bavarian Staatsoper. Mojca Erdmann began her career as a member of the ensemble of the Komische Oper Berlin. In 2006 she made her Salzburg Festival debut as Mozart’s Zaide; in 2007 and 2009 she performed Zelmira in Haydn’s Armida there, which was followed in 2014 by Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier. Sir Simon Rattle has engaged Mojca Erdmann for performances of Janáček’s Jenůfa and Ravel’s L’Enfant et les sortilèges. In 2008 she performed as the Wood Bird in Siegfried under his direction at the Aix-en-Provence Festival. Mojca Erdmann debuted as Zerlina in Don Giovanni at the Metropolitan Opera in 2011, sang her first Lulu at the Berlin Staatsoper in 2012, and opened the season at La Scala in Milan in 2014 as Marzelline in Fidelio. Most recently, in the fall of 2016, she performed Susanna in Mozart’s Figaro for the first time at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona; at the beginning of 2017 she interpreted Beat Furrer’s Spazio immergente at the Salzburg Mozartwoche, as well as works by Dai Fujikura and Harrison Birtwistle at the Ultraschall Festival in Berlin.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 2 September 2007 singing Ligeti's Requiem in a concert with the Bamberg Symphony under Jonathan Nott.
Februar 2017Other dates
Anna Prohaska © Harald Hoffmann/DG
The soprano Anna Prohaska, who is the daughter of an Irish-English singer and an Austrian opera director, was born in 1983 in Neu-Ulm and studied voice with Norma Sharp and Brenda Mitchell at the Hanns Eisler Academy of Music in Berlin. She made her stage debut at the age of 18 as Flora in Benjamin Britten’s chamber opera The Turn of the Screw at the Komische Oper Berlin, receiving the Bavarian Theater Prize for her performance. Since the 2006-07 season Prohaska has been a member of the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin ensemble, where she has performed Mozart roles (Blonde in Abduction and Susanna in Figaro), Poppea in Handel’s Agrippina, Euridice in Gluck’s Orfeo, and Sophie in Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier. Her credits at the Salzburg Festival include Dvořák’s Rusalka, Nono’s Al gran sole, and Mozart’s Da Ponte trilogy; in 2017 she will perform there as Cordelia in a new production of Reimann’s Lear. Anna Prohaska has also sung at La Scala in Milan and Bavarian Staatsoper and in London, Paris, and Aix-en-Provence. She enjoys a close association with the Berlin Philharmonic and Sir Simon Rattle: most recently, in February 2017, she took part in performances of Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre in the staging by Peter Sellars. Additional appearances in the current season have taken her to Dutch National Opera (Handel’s Jephtha) and the Theater an der Wien (Purcell’s The Fairy Queen). Anna Prohaska is equally devoted to early and contemporary music; Wolfgang Rihm composed the pieces Mnemosyne and Samothrake for her. As a lieder singer she performs such thematic recitals as Faith and Ecstasy, Sirènes, Behind the Lines, and, together with the actor Lars Eidinger, Hamlet and Ophelia. Anna Prohaska received the Schneider-Schott Music Award in 2010 and the Berlin Art Prize in 2016.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 19 March 2010 in Berg’s Lulu Suite under Claudio Abbado.
Hanno Müller-Brachmann © Monika Rittershaus
The bass-baritone Hanno Müller-Brachmann, a native of southern Baden in Germany, began his musical training with the Basel Boys’ Choir. He later studied voice with Ingeborg Most at the Freiburg Academy of Music, with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau in Berlin as part of his lieder class, and with Rudolf Piernay in Mannheim. In 1996 Müller-Brachmann made his operatic debut at the Berlin Staatsoper in Telemann’s Orpheus under René Jacobs. From 1998 to 2011 he was a permanent member of that renowned company, where he performed a wide range of roles, from the Mozart repertoire to such dramatic parts as Orest (in Strauss’s Elektra), Kaspar (Weber’s Freischütz), Golaud (Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande) and Wotan in Wagner’s Ring. Müller-Bachmannʼs credits also include performances at the Munich, Hamburg, and Vienna Staatsoper companies and in San Francisco, Paris, and Madrid. He has collaborated with such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Riccardo Chailly, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Michael Gielen, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Zubin Mehta, and Sir Simon Rattle. He sang Papageno on Claudio Abbado’s CD recording of The Magic Flute, which won a Gramophone Award. Müller-Brachmann has also performed lieder at the Edinburgh Festival, the Schubertiade in Schwarzenberg, Wigmore Hall in London, and in many European cities. At the beginning of 2017 he sang in Bach’s B minor Mass with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons and in Britten’s War Requiem with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande in Geneva. He will appear with Franz Welser-Möst and the Cleveland Orchestra in May for performances of Debussy’s Pelléas and with Bernard Haitink at La Scala in Milan in June for Beethoven’s Missa solemnis. Since the fall of 2011 Hanno Müller-Brachmann has been professor of voice at the Karlsruhe Academy of Music.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 6 September 2005 in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, with the London Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Kurt Masur.
17.30 | Introduction (in German) with Mark Sattler | Auditorium