© Alexander Shapunov
© Alexander Shapunov
Mariinsky Orchestra 2
Mariinsky Orchestra | Valery Gergiev
The first, Alexander Borodin, taught as a professor of organic chemistry at the Medical-Surgical Academy in St. Petersburg. The second, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, cruised the oceans as a naval officer on a warship. And the third, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, worked as a lawyer in the Russian Ministry of Justice. However, all three achieved everlasting fame in a different profession through their compositions: musical careers can be pretty crazy! In their second appearance in Lucerne, Valery Gergiev and his Mariinsky Orchestra lead us on a foray through the founding years of Russian symphonic music, presenting works that are not programmed everyday. Like Borodin’s Second Symphony, whose irresistible mixture of yearning melody, touching melancholy, and dancing verve makes for a truly pleasurable work. With its numerous quotes from folk song, Tchaikovsky’s Little Russian also has its earworms. In fact, it sounds so familiar from the first encounter that you feel as if you’ve known it forever.
Special Oﬀer: “Look | Listen | Enjoy – Together at the Concert”
What could be better than introducing young ones to the secrets of classical music? When a ticket is purchased, adults will receive two equivalent free tickets for their youthful companions. More information here.
Mariinsky Orchestra © Natasha Razina
The Mariinsky Orchestra ranks among Russia’s oldest ensembles. It was founded in 1783 in St. Petersburg, during the reign of Catherine the Great, as the court orchestra. In the second half of the 19th century, the orchestra was substantially shaped by Eduard Nápravník, who regularly conducted from 1863 until 1914 and who also led the concerts of the Imperial Russian Music Society for many years. The ensemble’s extraordinary quality attracted musicians from all over the world, including such composers as Hector Berlioz, Richard Wagner, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Gustav Mahler, and Sergei Rachmaninoff and conductors like Hans von Bülow and Arthur Nikisch. Many milestones of the repertoire have been premiered by the Mariinsky Orchestra, including operas and ballets by Glinka, Tchaikovsky, Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Shostakovich, and Khachaturian. In 1935, during the Soviet era, the ensemble and its regular house (the Mariinsky Theater) were renamed the Kirov Orchestra and the Kirov Theater, respectively, after the murdered Leningrad Secretary of the Communist Party. The original names were reactivated after the breakup of the Soviet Union. Vladimir Dranishnikov, Ariy Pazovsky, Evgeny Mravinsky, Konstantin Simeonov, and Yuri Temirkanov number among the conductors who decisively shaped the Mariinsky Orchestra in the 20th century. Since 1988 the orchestra has been led by Valery Gergiev, who has significantly expanded its repertoire and who has also performed such previously overlooked composers as Stravinsky, Messiaen, Dutilleux, Henze, Shchedrin, Gubaidulina, and Kancheli; Gergiev has especially become known for leading his musicians in regular performances around the world, from the most important festivals to the major music centers. Since 2009 the orchestra has released its recordings on its own Mariinsky house label. Global Partners of the Mariinsky Theatre: VTB Bank, Yoko Ceschina, Sberbank.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 20 August 2000 in works by Bartók, Scriabin, and Mussorgsky/Ravel conducted by Valery Gergiev.
Juli 2019Other dates
Valery Gergiev Valery Gergiev © Marco Borggreve
Valery Gergiev, who was born in 1953 in Moscow and grew up in the Caucasus, studied at the Leningrad Conservatory of Music with Ilya Musin and launched his career in 1977 with his victory at the Karajan Competition in Berlin. In the following year, he began his collaboration with the Kirov Opera (now known as the Mariinsky Theater), where he made his debut with Prokofiev’s War and Peace. Gergiev was named Artistic Director in 1988 and General Director in 1996; this position is associated with his lead-ership of the Stars of the White Nights and New Horizons Festivals as well. He has toured with the Mariinsky Ensemble to Japan, China, Israel, and the United States, as well as to many of the European music centers. In 2006 he inaugurated a new concert hall in St. Petersburg constructed specifically for the Mariinsky Orchestra. This was followed in 2013 by the opening of a second, new opera house. In 1994 Valery Gergiev made his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, where he served as First Guest Conductor from 1997 to 2008. From 1995 to 2007 he also helmed the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, and from 2007 to 2015 he was the leader of the London Symphony Orchestra. Since the fall of 2015, Gergiev has been Chief Conductor of the Munich Philharmonic. He has also guest conducted the Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco Symphonies; the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras; the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics; and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam. He made his debut at the Bayreuth Festival in 2019 with Wagner’s Tannhäuser. Gergiev serves as Chairman of the International Tchaikovsky Com-petition and directs the Moscow Easter Festival. His native country has honored him with the Shostakovich Award and the People’s Artist of Russia Award; in 2006 he received the Polar Music Prize and the Karajan Music Award.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 20 August 1999 with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra in works by Kancheli and Beethoven.
July 2019Other dates
Introduction to the Concert | 17.30 | KKL Luzern, Auditorium
with Susanne Stähr