Sir Simon Rattle © Peter Fischli/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
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Sir Simon Rattle © Peter Fischli/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
Magdalena Kožená © Mathias Bothor
Symphony Concert 25
London Symphony Orchestra and Chorus | Simon Rattle | soloists
Maurice Ravel felt most at ease in the society of children. He loved to crouch down and play with them, tell them stories, or track down mechanical puppets at fair stalls to give them. No wonder, then, that in his creative work, several scores have a reference to childhood. In three delicate orchestral songs, for example, he lets the narrator Scheherazade lead us into the fantastic world of the East. In his “pièces enfantines,” Ma mère l’Oye, which he originally wrote as a four-hand piano suite for two children, he sets famous fairy-tales to music. But with his one-act opera L’Enfant et les Sortilèges, Ravel may have portrayed himself in the lead role of the stubborn child who has no desire to do his homework and just sticks out his tongue at his mother. However, when the child is left alone as a punishment, remarkable things start happening: all the objects around him begin to come to life and pester him − the furniture, the dishes, even the chimney fire. Maurice at home, on his own.
With the friendly support of the Kuehne Foundation
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London Symphony Orchestra © Ranald Mackechnie
London Symphony Orchestra
The London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) was founded in 1904 as the first self-governing orchestra in England and soon won an outstanding reputation around the world. Over the course of its history, André Previn (1968–79), Claudio Abbado (1979–88), Michael Tilson Thomas (1988–95), Sir Colin Davis (1995–2007), and Valery Gergiev (2007–15) have served as Principal Conductors of the LSO. Sir Simon Rattle began his tenure as the new Music Director in 2017; Gianandrea Noseda and François-Xavier Roth act as Principal Guest Conductors, Michael Tilson Thomas is Conductor Laureate, André Previn Conductor Emeritus. The London Symphony Orchestra annually presents more than seventy concerts at the Barbican Centre, which has provided its permanent home since 1982. Residencies regularly take the LSO to Lincoln Center in New York, the Paris Philharmonie, and Suntory Hall in Tokyo. The musicians additionally give performances in other European music centers and Asia; most recently, in June 2018, they toured to Bangkok and seven Chinese cities. The 2018-19 season is being devoted to the focal theme of “Roots & Origins”; among the guest conductors are Philippe Jordan, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Bernard Haitink, and Sir Antonio Pappano. The LSO attaches particular importance to innovative and broad-based programming for audiences of all ages and educational levels. Each season the LSO reaches 60,000 people through its education and community programme LSO Discovery, which is based at the Orchestra’s venue LSO St Luke’s. These activities include family concerts, school projects, a collaboration with the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and the series “Discovery Days.” The Orchestra has its own label, “LSO Live,” which has released more than 100 recordings to date. These have garnered such distinctions as the Grammy Award, the Classical Brit Award, the Orphée d’or, and the German Record Critics’ Prize.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 3. September 1982, with Claudio Abbado conducting Elgar’s Cello Concerto and Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique.
London Symphony Chorus © LSO/Doug Peters
London Symphony Chorus
The London Symphony Chorus was founded in 1966 with the mission of performing vocal symphonic works jointly with the London Symphony Orchestra. At the same time, the Chorus, which currently includes some 150 singers, is not a subordinate part of the Orchestra but an independent organization and therefore also collaborates with other ensembles and institutions. At the center of its repertoire are the large-scale works of the 19th and 20th centuries, beginning with Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, continuing through Rossini’s and Dvořák’s Stabat Mater settings, the Brahms Requiem, and Mahler’s symphonies to Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius, Britten’s War Requiem, and Tippett’s A Child of Our Time. More than 140 recordings document the work of the London Symphony Chorus; they have received no fewer than five Grammy Awards. The 2018-19 season will include performances of such works as Britten’s Spring Symphony with Sir Simon Rattle, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with François-Xavier Roth, Bern-
stein’s Candide with Marin Alsop, and music by Charles Ives with Michael Tilson Thomas. The London Symphony Chorus has been directed by Simon Halsey since 2012. A native of London who was born in 1958, Halsey is a longtime associate of Sir Simon Rattle. They already started working together during Rattle’s tenure with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, whose chorus Halsey continues to direct. In later years, when Halsey helmed the Rundfunkchor Berlin from 2001 to 2015, they collaborated on numerous projects with the Berlin Philharmonic. This partnership now continues with concerts with the London Symphony Orchestra, including such opera performances as Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen, which they will perform in 2019.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 28 August 1986 with Mozart’s Requiem led by Ulrich Meyer-Schoellkopf.
Sir Simon Rattle © Priska Ketterer/LUCERNE FESTIVAL
Sir Simon Rattle
Sir Simon Rattle has been serving as the new Music Director of the London Symphony Orchestra since the start of the 2017-18 season. He inaugurated his tenure with a ten-day festival (“This Is Rattle”) and Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust as the main work; in the 2018-19 season he will devote himself to scores including Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen. Rattle, who was born in 1955 in Liverpool, studied piano, percussion, and orchestral conducting at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 1980 he began his close collaboration with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, which he led as Music Director from 1990 to 1998, building it into a top international ensemble. In 2002 he became Chief Conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic, whose repertoire he gradually expanded during his 16-year era by integrating contemporary music and also Baroque works and musical historical rarities. Many of these concerts were recorded live and have garnered awards. He bid farewell as head of the Philharmonic in June 2018 with Mahler’s Sixth Symphony, with which he had made his debut with the Berliners in 1987. Since 1992 Sir Simon has also been closely associated with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and is currently its Principal Artist; he has additionally conducted the leading orchestras of Europe and the U.S. He made his debut as an opera conductor in 1977 at the Glyndebourne Festival. Additional engagements have taken him to the Opéra national de Paris, the Royal Opera, Dutch National Opera, Vienna Staatsoper, and the Metropolitan Opera in New York. He recently performed Wagner’s Parsifal at the 2018 Baden-Baden Easter Festival. Simon Rattle was made a Knight Bachelor by Queen Elizabeth II in 1994; he holds the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany and is a Knight of the French Legion of Honor. In 2013 he received the Léonie Sonning Music Prize.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 8 September 1996 with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra conducting works by Berlioz, Beethoven, Tippett, and Haydn.
July 2018Other dates
Magdalena Kožená © Mathias Bothor
Born in 1973 in Brno (in the current Czech Republic), the mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kožená began her musical training in 1987 at the conservatory of her native city, continuing her studies from 1991 to 1995 with Eva Blahová in Bratislava. She launched her professional career with several international awards, including at the Mozart Competition in Salzburg in 1995. In 1996 she became a member of the ensemble at the Vienna Volksoper; since 1997 she has worked as a freelance artist. Her operatic repertoire ranges from Monteverdi through Handel, Gluck, and Mozart to Strauss, Janáček, and Martinů. Kožená has performed Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Idamante in Idomeneo at the Salzburg Festival as well as Dorabella in Così fan tutte and Bizet’s Carmen at the Salzburg Easter Festival. Among her credits are Debussy’s Mélisande and Marguerite in Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust at the Staatsoper Berlin, Cherubino in Figaro at the Bavarian Staatsoper, and Rossini’s Cenerentola at the Royal Opera House in London. She has also performed at the Metropolitan Opera, the Opéra du Châtelet in Paris, and the Edinburgh, Aix-en-Provence, and Aldeburgh Festivals. LUCERNE FESTIVAL named her “artiste étoile” in the summer of 2009. In the 2017-18 season, Kožená concertized with the Berlin Philharmonic, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre de Paris, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Venice Baroque Orchestra, and the Concert d’Astrée. In November 2018 she will appear in a new production of Rameau’s Hippolyte et Aricie at the Staats-
oper Berlin. Her recordings have garnered such awards as the Echo Klassik, the Gramophone Award, and the Diapason d’or; most recently, in the fall of 2017, she released a collection of songs by Cole Porter. Magdalena Ko-žená has been a Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres since 2003.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 22 March 1997 with Les Musiciens du Louvre conducted by Marc Minkowski in sacred music works by Handel and Charpentier.
Patricia Bardon © Frances Marshall
The mezzo-soprano Patricia Bardon, who comes from Ireland and studied with Veronica Dunne in Dublin, was only 18 when she won second prize at the BBC’s Singer of the World Competition. She soon began working on a wide repertoire that ranges from Monteverdi and Baroque opera through bel canto and the Verdi and Wagner roles up to the present. Her engagements have taken her to the English National Opera and the Royal Opera House in London, as well as to the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Los Angeles Opera, the Bavarian and Berlin Staatsoper companies, the Opéra national de Paris, and the Theater an der Wien. Most recently, in the summer of 2018, she sang Cornelia in Handel’s Giulio Cesare at the Glyndebourne Festival, which was conducted by William Christie. Such conductors as Ivor Bolton, Bernard Haitink, Zubin Mehta, Sir Antonio Pappano, Christophe Rousset, and Esa-Pekka Salonen are among other partners with whom she has collaborated.
Jane Archibald © Helen Tansey
The Canadian soprano Jane Archibald began her career in 2003 in San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera Program. In 2006 she was engaged as part of the Vienna Staatsoper ensemble, where she remained for three years. Since then she has been a freelance artist, singing coloratura roles in particular at many prestigious companies. She has performed Zerbinetta in Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos at the Bavarian Staatsoper, the Royal Opera House in London, and La Scala in Milan; Adele in Johann Strauss’s Die Fledermaus at the Metropolitan Opera in New York and the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus; and Konstanze in Mozart’s Entführung, Angelica in Haydn’s Orlando Paladino, and Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor at Zurich Opera. In the 2017-18 season, Jane Archibald was artist-in-residence at the Canadian Opera Company, and in the fall of 2018 she will undertake the role of Mathilde in Rossini’s Guillaume Tell at the Theater an der Wien.
Anna Stéphany © Marco Borggreve
The mezzo-soprano Anna Stéphany, who comes from an English-French family, graduated from King’s College and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with the Kathleen Ferrier Award. Following her first stage experiences at the National Opera Studio, she was a member of Zurich Opera’s ensemble from 2012 to 2015, where she continues to have an association. In the spring of 2018, she sang Idamante in a new production there of Mozart’s Idomeneo. She has also appeared as a Mozart singer at the Bavarian Staatsoper, the Glyndebourne Festival, and in Aix-en-Provence. One of her signature roles is Octavian in Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, with which she made her debut at the Royal Opera House in London. Most recently, in the summer of 2018, she performed at Glyndebourne in a production of Handel’s Giulio Cesare under William Christie. At the beginning of the year, Stéphany released her first solo album, Black Is the Colour, which includes works by Berio, Ravel, and de Falla.
Elizabeth Watts © Marco Borggreve
The British soprano Elizabeth Watts, who was born in Norwich, initially graduated with a degree in archeology before she decided to study voice with Lillian Watson at the Royal College of Music. She won the Kathleen Ferrier Award in 2006, the Rosenblatt Song Prize in 2007, and the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award in 2011. She launched her stage career with the Young Singers Programme at English National Opera and was soon engaged by the Royal Opera House in London, where she has appeared as Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Marzelline in Beethoven’s Fidelio. Other credits include Welsh National Opera and the Theater an der Wien. She especially concentrates on the concert repertoire from Bach and Handel to Britten and Ligeti, which she has performed with such conductors as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Andrew Manze, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Sir Simon Rattle, and Michael Tilson Thomas. She regularly gives lieder recitals as well.
Sunnyboy Dladla © Tatjana Dachsel
The tenor Sunnyboy Dladla was born in a township in Piet Retief, South Africa, and studied with Sidwill Hartman at the South African College of Music in Cape Town. He began his international career in 2012 as a member of the opera studio of Zurich Opera, where he has since appeared as Arturo in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Conte di Libenskof in Rossini’s Il viaggio a Reims, and Paolino in Cimarosa’s Il matrimonio segreto. Additional engagements have taken Dladla to Deutsche Oper in Berlin; the opera houses in Leipzig, Stuttgart, and Cologne; Norske Opera in Oslo; the Rossini Festival in Pesaro; and the Holland Festival, where he performed in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann in June 2018. In addition to the bel canto repertoire of a tenore di grazia, he also draws on his acting talent to take on such comic roles as Basilio and Don Curzio in Mozart’s Figaro, which he sang in a production in Vienna with Marc Minkowski.
Gavan Ring © Anthony Riordan
The baritone Gavan Ring comes from County Kerry in Ireland. He studied at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin and acquired his first stage experiences at the National Opera Studio in London. He made his debut at the Glyndebourne Festival Opera in 2012, and in 2013 he won second prize at the Wigmore International Song Competition. Since then, Ring has appeared especially as a Mozart singer: as Nardo in La finta giardiniera at the Glyndebourne Festival, Don Giovanni at Welsh National Opera, and Guglielmo in Così fan tutte at Opera North in Leeds, where he will also sing Papageno in The Magic Flute in January. In the summer of 2018, he undertook the role of Olivier in Strauss’s Capriccio at Garsington Opera, and last season he also went on a European tour with the Ensemble Matheus led by Jean-Christophe Spinosi. Gavan Ring’s concert repertoire ranges from the Passions of Bach to Britten’s War Requiem.
The English bass David Shipley received his training at the Royal Academy and the Guildhall School of Music in London, where he studied with Janice Chapman. He was subsequently accepted into the Young Artist Programme at the Royal Opera House, where in the last season he performed in Mozart’s The Magic Flute, Monteverdi’s Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, and Bizet’s Carmen. He was part of the ensemble in Britten’s Billy Budd at the Glyndebourne Festival and Opera di Roma. Among his plans for the 2018-19 season are engagements as Sparafucile in Verdi’s Rigoletto at Scottish Opera and as Truffaldin in Strauss’s Ariadne at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. Shipley enjoys a close collaboration with Sir John Eliot Gardiner, under whose direction he has appeared in Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex, Bach’s B minor Mass, and Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo. Other credits include performances at the Salzburg Festival, the BBC Proms, and LUCERNE FESTIVAL.
18.30 | Introduction to the Concert (in German) with Susanne Stähr | KKL Lucerne, Auditorium