In many places, concert life is starting up again these days - in cautious small steps, in reduced form, with thinned-out rows of chairs, in the open air. Accordingly, we are happy and relieved to again be able to announce performances by our artists in front of an audience, in addition to live streams and other virtual offerings. With excitement we observe and applaud the various creative solutions in view of the restrictions. We hope for a summer - and, above all, a new season - full of music.
on the web and on the radio
Together with Götz Payer, Sarah Wegener appears in the living rooms of her fans (as long as they have a radio or internet connection): As part of the new SWR2 series #Zusammenspielen, she can be heard on the radio in an evening concert on 11 July; the studio recording is also available online.
11/7/2020, 20.03 SWR2 Evening Concert
Audio online from 16/6/2020 at www.SWR2.de/zusammenspielen
On 2 July, violinist Daishin Kashimoto will perform in a trio with cellist Claudio Bohórquez and pianist Denis Kozhukhin in the foyer of the Nikolaisaal Potsdam. As part of the summer concert series "Echt jetzt?!", the top-class trio will perform Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Trio in E flat major op. 70, No. 2 as well as Franz Schubert's Piano Trio in B flat major op. 99 in front of a live audience.
Summer Concerts online
The Audi Summer Concerts series will begin on 2 July with a special concert: sitting between historical Auto vehicles, Maximilian Hornung will interpret Schubert's Trout Quintet in Ingolstadt together with Lisa Batiashvili, Alice Sara Ott, Lawrence Power and Nabil Shehata, combined with a reading by Katja Riemann. At the end of this year's digital concert series, Lisa Batiashvili and Maximilian Hornung will meet again on 5 July, accompanied by the Camerata Salzburg under the direction of oboist and conductor François Leleux.
Under the motto "Together for Music", the festival celebrates its 30th anniversary with renowned artists and ensembles. The four live streamed concerts are complemented by small open-air concerts in Ingolstadt.
Audi Summer Concerts
Together with the Orchestre national d'Auvergne under the baton of its music director Roberto Forés Veses, cellist Anssi Karttunen played the solo part in Betsy Jolas' work Side Roads at the end of 2019 at the Festival Musiques Démesurées de Clermont-Ferrand, which was the first French performance of the work. Now the recording is being released as a digital album, available in HD audio format 96k 24b and accompanied by a digital booklet.
The work was jointly commissioned by the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and the Orchestre national d'Auvergne, and marks a new stage in the fruitful collaboration between Anssi Karttunen and Betsy Jolas.
Download the Album here
Prayer for the end of the pandemic
Ryoko Aoki started her new streaming series on 30 May with the performance of the work Voice of Wind for Noh voice and bass flute (Kazushi Saito), composed by the composer Federico Gardella as a prayer for an end to Covid-19 (available online for further viewing here). During the worldwide suffering caused by the pandemic, Ryoko Aoki commissioned international composers to write pieces for Noh voice, which she now performs in live streaming concerts.
In doing so, she also refers to the origins of the Noh tradition: From the 14th century onwards, Noh performers appeared in religious rituals in Japan to pray for the recovery from illness.
New CD: Penderecki in Salzburg
Sarah Wegener made her highly successful debut at the Salzburg Festival in 2018 with Krzysztof Penderecki's St. Luke Passion as a soloist with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal conducted by Kent Nagano. The live recording of the large-scale oratorio, which premiered in 1966, is now being released on the BIS label, two months after the death of the important Polish composer.
Besides Sarah Wegener and the OSM, Lucas Meachem (baritone), Matthew Rose (bass) and Slawomir Holland (narrator) as well as the Philharmonic Choir of Krakow and the Boys' Choir of Warsaw participated in the recording. Krzysztof Penderecki's Passio et mors Domini nostri Iesu Christi secundum Lucam (The Passion and Death of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke) is considered a key work of New Music and refers indirectly to Bach's famous B-A-C-H motif in several places.
For Sarah Wegener, her debut in Salzburg was part of a series of joint projects with the prominent maestro. However, her concert with the OSM and Kent Nagano, planned for August, at the end of his last season as Principal Conductor in Montreal, had to be cancelled due to the Corona Pandemic.
Penderecki, St Luke Passion
Rachel Fenlon presents an exciting new series in a music and conversation format via the streaming platform Idagio. Both with her self-accompanied song performances and in (musical) dialogue with guests, she explores how an unconventional and experimental attitude can enrich music-making. It will take place Wednesdays at 20.00 hrs via Idagio.
Conversations with Claire
From 21 April onwards, Claire Huangci invites illustrious conversationalists to her new series Conversations with Claire every Tuesday at 6 pm. The prelude to the new format, presented and transmitted by the streaming platform Idagio, was an encounter with conductor Howard Griffith, with whom the pianist talked about Beethoven's Violin Concerto, among other things. The two musicians recorded the work together in the piano version and performed it repeatedly.
Conversations with Claire
New Beethoven CD Box
OUT NOW: François-Frédéric Guy celebrates the start of the Beethoven year 2020 with a play-conduct recording of the complete piano concertos of the great composer. Together with the Sinfonia Varsovia, the Beethoven specialist presents his interpretation of the works at the piano and on the podium in a CD box released on Printemps des Arts de Monte-Carlo.
Click here for the CD.
New boss for Florence
Eva Ollikainen has been announced as the new Principal Conductor of the Orchestra della Toscana. She will take over from her predecessor Daniele Rustioni at the beginning of the 2020/21 season. The ORT, located in the historic Teatro Verdi in Florence, will celebrate its 40th birthday in 2020 and on this occasion implement a complete artistic and personnel realignment.
In addition to Eva Ollikainen as Principal Conductor, Beatrice Venezi (pictured left) and Nil Venditti (pictured right) will regularly lead the orchestra as permanent guest conductors, and James Conlon as honorary conductor. In its press release, the orchestra explains: "We see it as our duty to ask ourselves what it means to be an orchestra in 2020, and we are looking for answers that are relevant to our time. The classical music world is said to be very self-centred and sometimes exclusive. Our goal is to develop a new attitude and new tools with which we can overcome these clichés".
At its concerts in Florence and abroad, the Orchestra della Toscana, with Giorgio Battistelli as artistic director, features repertoire from baroque to modern, with a special emphasis on contemporary works. For the next two seasons with ORT, Eva Ollikainen is planning a Brahms cycle. Currently Principal Conductor of the Nordic Chamber Orchestra in Sweden, she will also serve as Music Director and Artistic Director of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra from the 2020/21 season.
new position for Eva Ollikainen
The Iceland Symphony Orchestra has appointed Eva Ollikainen Chief Conductor and Artistic Director, with an initial four-year contract beginning with the 2020/21 season. The ISO is the national orchestra of Iceland and resident at Harpa Concert Hall, a landmark building in Reykjavík’s waterfront area. She will be working alongside Managing Director Lára Sóley Jóhannsdóttir:
“Eva Ollikainen's appointment marks a new chapter for the orchestra – a start of an incredibly exciting time of great opportunities. With her previous work with the orchestra, she has gained a strong connection with our musicians and audiences through her commitment, vibrant energy and enthusiasm. She understands how important the orchestra is to our society and how that connection can be developed even further. But most importantly Eva shares our vision for the future. She has all the qualities needed to raise the artistic level of the orchestra. We cannot wait to welcome Eva to our team.”
During her tenure, she will conduct a minimum of eight weeks during the regular concert season and will join the orchestra on international tours. Before her inaugural season, Ollikainen takes to the stage in March 2020 for the Iceland Symphony Orchestra’s 70th anniversary.
“I have always felt a deep bond with the musicians of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Not only are they virtuosos on the highest international level, but their way of understanding and communicating music is unique. I very much look forward to our collaboration exploring new and old repertoire together, and the musical encounters with our fantastic audience," says the Finnish conductor.