Symphony Concert 15 ─ CANCELLED

Royal Concertgebouworkest | Collegium Vocale Gent | Philippe Herreweghe | soloists


Mon, 31.08. | 19.30 | No. 20336

KKL Luzern, Concert Hall

Please book a wheelchair ticket under t +41 (0) 41 226 44 80 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.)

Summer Festival – Cancelled

14.08.-13.09. 2020




    Symphony Concert 15 ─ CANCELLED

    Royal Concertgebouworkest | Collegium Vocale Gent | Philippe Herreweghe | soloists

    Robin Johannsen  soprano
    David Fischer  tenor
    Florian Boesch  bass-baritone
    Joseph Haydn (1732–1809)
    The Creation. Oratorio in three parts Hob. XXI:2

    “And there was light!” With a glistening C major chord, the sun breaks out of the darkness. The moon and stars sparkle like silver while refreshing rain trickles down on the earth, which is populated by all kinds of animals. The bassoon depicts the cooing dove, and virtuoso arabesques on the flute conjure the warbling nightingale. Trills deep in the bass suggest the roaring lion, gentle string tremolos depict an army of buzzing insects, and gently swaying melodies evoke sheep as they graze on the meadow. Isn’t our world simply beautiful? With almost childlike joy in the power of tone painting, Joseph Haydn composed a monument to this beauty with his oratorio The Creation. His praise of God’s work will be interpreted by Philippe Herreweghe, the Belgian grand master of historically informed performance practice, though he will be leading the Royal Concertgebouworkest, a modern symphony orchestra. But Herreweghe is very familiar with the Amsterdamers, and he knows how to combine crisp, idiomatic period texture with lush sonority – so that it is not just the sun that will shine.

    Royal Concertgebouworkest

    The Royal Concertgebouworkest (RCO) was founded in 1888 as the Concertgebouworkest for the opening of Amsterdam’s concert hall; it officially received the appellation “Royal” to mark its 100th anniversary. Willem Kees was the first chief conductor and in 1895 passed the reins on to Willem Mengelberg. For a half-century, Mengelberg influenced the orchestra and established its great Mahler tradition. Eduard van Beinum was the first to helm the RCO following the Second World War and was succeeded by Bernard Haitink (1961–1988), Riccardo Chailly (1988–2004), Mariss Jansons (2004–2015), and Daniele Gatti (2016–2018). Leading composers such as Gustav Mahler and Richard Strauss conducted the RCO on more than one occasion. The orchestra still regularly collaborates with contemporary composers and premieres their works. In addition to some 90 concerts in Amsterdam, the RCO gives 40 concerts at leading concert halls throughout the world each year and will tour to Japan and Taiwan this November. In the 2019-20 season, the violist Tabea Zimmermann will serve as artist-in-residence and the British composer and conductor Thomas Adès will play a major role with a six-part concert series. More than 1,100 recordings on LP, CD, and DVD to date, which since 2004 have been released on its in-house label, document the RCO’s artistic achievements. The orchestra is also committed to developing talent through the RCO Academy, collaborative efforts with other institutions, and Young, a youth orchestra for “hidden talent” from all over Europe launched in 2019. The RCO is co-funded by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture, and Science; the Municipality of Amsterdam; sponsors; funds; and numerous donors all over the world. The largest portion of its income is generated by proceeds from the concerts it gives in and outside the Netherlands.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 3 September 1972 in a program of music by Stravinsky and Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony under Bernard Haitink.

    August 2019

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    Collegium Vocale Gent

    The Collegium Vocale Gent was founded in 1970 by Philippe Herreweghe. It was one of the first ensembles to adapt what were at the time new ideas about baroque performance practice in vocal music. Soon such musicians as Gustav Leonhardt, Ton Koopman, and Nikolaus Harnoncourt became acquainted with the Flemish choir and engaged it to collaborate on their projects. Since the mid-1980s the Collegium Vocale Gent has enjoyed an international reputation, with invitations to perform in the leading concert halls of Europe, Israel, Russia, the United States, East Asia, and Australia. The choir’s repertoire is not limited to one particular era but ranges from Renaissance vocal polyphony, baroque works, and classical and romantic oratorios to contemporary music, with the oeuvre of Bach and Handel as a focus.  Along with regular performances with the Orchestre des Champs-Elysées conducted by Philippe Herreweghe, the Collegium Vocale Gent gives concerts with the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra and the Berlin Academy for Early Music, as well as with such traditional symphony orchestras as the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Budapest Festival Orchestra. Such conductors as Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Sigiswald Kuijken, René Jacobs, Paul Van Nevel, Iván Fischer, Marcus Creed, and Yannick Nézet-Séguin have led the Collegium. More than 75 recordings, which have won many awards, document their artistic achievements. The Collegium Vocale Gent was named Ambassador of the European Union in 2011 and is supported by the Education and Culture Program of the European Union, the Flemish Cultural Ministry, the Province of East Flanders, and the City of Ghent.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 16 April 1992 in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion under Philippe Herreweghe.

    August 2012

    Philippe Herreweghe

    Philippe Herreweghe, who was born in 1947, attended the Jesuit College of his native Ghent and studied piano at the Royal Conservatory of Ghent while also earning a degree in medicine and psychiatry in 1975. During his university years, he also took lessons in harpsichord, organ, and choral conducting. In 1970 he founded the Collegium Vocale Gent, and following a performance of Bach’s St. John Passion in Amsterdam, Herreweghe was invited by Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Gustav Leonhardt to participate with his ensemble in their recordings of the complete Bach cantatas. In 1977 Herreweghe founded La Chapelle Royale, with which he has specialized in the performance of French music of the 17th and 18th centuries. He expanded his historical range by founding the Orchestre des Champs-Elysées in 1991 to perform works from the classical era to early modernism. For 20 years, from 1982 to 2002, Herreweghe led the Académies Musicales de Saintes; since 1997 he has also served as Music Director of the Royal Flemish Philharmonic. In addition to his work with his own ensembles, Herreweghe regularly appears with traditional symphony orchestras and has conducted such ensembles as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Berlin and Vienna Philharmonics, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra. Philippe Herreweghe has made more than 100 recordings and in 2010 launched his own label, φ (phi). He has won numerous awards: he was chosen as European Musician of the Year in 1991, named to the order Officier des Arts et des Lettres in 1994, and given a noble title by the King of Belgium in 2003; in the same year he received the title Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur, and in 2010 he won the Bach Medal in Leipzig.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 16 April 1992 in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, leading La Chapelle Royale and the Collegium Vocale Gent.

    August 2012

    Florian Boesch

    The Austrian baritone Florian Boesch, who comes from a Viennese family of singers, had his earliest vocal training from his grandmother, Ruthilde Boesch, before beginning studies at the University for Music in Vienna, where he took Robert Holl’s classes in lieder and the oratorio. He began his international career in 2003 as Papageno at Zurich Opera. Since that time, Boesch has been a regular guest on many international stages. In 2017, he sang Méphistophélès in Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust at the Berlin Staatsoper, with Sir Simon Rattle conducting; in the current season, he has already sung the title roles in Berg’s Wozzeck and Handel’s Saul at the Theater an der Wien. Boesch enjoyed a longstanding close partnership with Nikolaus Harnoncourt. Together, they performed works by Monteverdi, Bach, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven at the styriarte and Salzburg Festivals, as well as with the Berlin Philharmonic. Florian Boesch has also concertized with Ivor Bolton, Gustavo Dudamel, Iván Fischer, Valery Gergiev, Philippe Herreweghe, Sir Roger Norrington, and Robin Ticciati. In the 2014-15 season, he was artist-in-residence at Wigmore Hall in London, and he held the same position at the Vienna Konzerthaus in the 2016-17 season. Lieder singing is an important component of his work: credits include recitals at the Schubertiade, the Edinburgh Festival, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Konzerthaus in Dortmund, the Philharmonie in Luxembourg, and the Musikverein in Vienna. Together with the Tyrolean Musicbanda Franui, he developed the project Alles wieder gut, which he will present in Brussels and at the Hamburg Elbphilharmonie in the spring of 2018. Florian Boesch’s recording of ballades by Loewe won the Edison Award in 2012. His latest CD, which was released in the fall of 2017, is devoted to Schubert’s Winterreise.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL debut on 12 September 2006 as Poeta in Salieri’s Prima la musica, poi le parole under the direction of David Stern.

    February 2018


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    Concert Introduction (in German) | 18.30 | KKL Luzern, Auditorium
    with Susanne Stähr

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