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
Gruss-Moment 2 – in memoriam Pierre Boulez for orchestra
Requiem-Strophen for soloists, mixed choir, and orchestra
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
“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 the symphonic works of Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, Schubert, and Mahler. Since October 2003 Mariss Jansons has held the position of Music Director, commanding 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 present-day stars as Bernard Haitink, Sir Simon Rattle, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Riccardo Muti, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Daniel Harding, and Franz Welser-Möst. In recent years the musicians have also been working with such advocates of historically informed performance practice as, in the current season, Giovanni Antonini and Sir John Eliot Gardiner. The Orchestra regularly premieres new works through its “musica viva” concert series. The BR Symphony tours around the world and, following its 2016 Easter Festival performances in Lucerne, will concertize in Milan, Washington, Montreal, Chicago, and New York.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 28 August 1965 with works by Bartók and Bruckner, conducted by Rafael Kubelík.
Februar 2016Other 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 as the son of the conductor Arvīds 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. In 1971 he began his close association with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic as the assistant to Ev-geny Mravinsky. Jansons served as Music Director of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra from 1979 to 2000 and was Principal Conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra from 1997 to 2004. Since 2003 he has led the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, where his contract has been extended to 2021. Starting in 2004 Jansons additionally helmed the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam for 11 years; in 2015 he was named its Honorary Conductor. He has guest conducted the finest orchestras in the United States and Europe, including the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics; in 2006, 2012, and 2016 he led the latter’s New Year’s concerts. His discography comprises many acclaimed recordings, including his Grammy Award-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 2016Other dates
Anna Prohaska © Harald Hoffmann/DG
Soprano Anna Prohaska, who is the daughter of an Irish-English singer and an Austrian opera director, was born in 1983 in Neu-Ulm, Germany, and studied voice with Norma Sharp and Brenda Mitchell at the Hanns Eisler Academy of Music in Berlin; she also studied lieder performance with Wolfram Rieger. In 2002, when she was 19, Prohaska made her stage debut as the child Flora in Benjamin Britten’s The Turn of the Screw at the Komische Oper Berlin; she was awarded the Bavarian Theater Prize for her performance. Since the 2006-07 season Prohaska has been a permanent member of the ensemble of the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin, where her roles have included Blonde in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Oscar in Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera, and Poppea in Handel’s Agrippina. Among the productions for which the Salzburg Festival has engaged her are Dvorák’s Rusalka, Nono’s Al gran sole, Mozart’s Don Giovanni, and, in the summer of 2011, Così fan tutte. Last December Prohaska appeared in the season opening of La Scala in Milan as Zerlina in a new staging of Don Giovanni. Prohaska has sung orchestral songs by Webern with the Berlin Philharmonic under Simon Rattle and has performed concert arias by Mozart with Claudio Abbado. She has also appeared with the Vienna Philharmonic and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, working with Pierre Boulez, Daniel Harding, and Mariss Jansons. As a lieder singer, Anna Prohaska has performed at the Bregenz Festival, the Salzburg Mozarteum, and the Vienna Musikverein; in the spring of 2011 she released a complete recording of the lieder of Bernd Alois Zimmermann as well as a lieder recital titled Sirène. In 2010 Prohaska received the Schneider-Schott Music Prize.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 19 March 2010 in Berg’s Lulu Suite under Claudio Abbado.
Mojca Erdmann © Felix Broede/DG
Mojca ErdmannOther dates
Hanno Müller-Brachmann © Monika Rittershaus
Bass-baritone Hanno Müller-Brachmann, a native of South 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. Successes at the National Singing Competition in Berlin (1992 and 1994), the New Voice Competition in Gütersloh (1995) and the ARD Music Competition (1996) brought him to the attention of the music world. In 1996 Müller-Brachmann made his operatic debut at Berlin State Opera in Telemann’s Orpheus under René Jacobs. From 1998 to 2011 he was a permanent member of the ensemble of that renowned company, where he performed a wide spectrum of roles ranging from Mozart’s operas to such dramatic characters as Orest (Elektra), Kaspar (Der Freischütz), and Golaud (Pelléas et Mélisande), as well as Wagner’s Amfortas and Wotan. Müller-Brachmann has performed with the Munich, Hamburg, and Vienna State Opera companies and also in San Francisco, Paris, and Madrid. He is scheduled to make his Metropolitan Opera debut in the fall of 2012 as Escamillo in Carmen. Müller-Brachmann has collaborated with such conductors as Daniel Baren-boim, Riccardo Chailly, John Eliot Gardiner, Michael Gielen, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Zubin Mehta, and Simon Rattle. He sang Papageno on Claudio Abbado’s recording of The Magic Flute, which won a Gramophone Award. Müller-Brachmann has also performed lieder at the Edinburgh Festival, at the Schubertiade in Schwarzenberg, at Wigmore Hall in London, and in many European cities, with András Schiff, Hartmut Höll, and Graham Johnson partnering him on piano. Since the fall of 2011 he has taught 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): Wolfgang Rihm in conversation with Mark Sattler | Auditorium