Wiener Philharmoniker, Austria, 2020

Tour Dates: 21st October - 31st October, 2020

There is perhaps no other musical ensemble more closely associated with the history and tradition of European classical music than the Vienna Philharmonic.

Tour Dates
  • 21st October - 31st October, 2020

 

Vienna Philharmonic

There is perhaps no other musical ensemble more closely associated with the history and tradition of European classical music than the Vienna Philharmonic. In the course of the past 178 years, this orchestra has experienced and influenced the course of musical history around the world. Even to this day, prominent soloists and conductors refer to the unique “Viennese Sound” as the outstanding quality that sets it apart from other orchestras.

The fascination that the orchestra has held since its foundation by Otto Nicolai in 1842 for prominent composers and conductors, as well as for audiences all over the world, is based upon the conscious maintenance of a homogenous musical style which is carefully bequeathed from one generation to the next, as well as a unique history and organizational structure. The pillars of the 'Philharmonic Idea', which remain valid even today, are a democratic organization that places the entire artistic and organizational decision-making process in the hands of the musicians themselves, and a close symbiosis with the Vienna State Opera Orchestra. Vienna Philharmonic statutes stipulate that only musicians from the opera orchestra can become members of the Vienna Philharmonic.

Another unique feature of this democratic structure is that the orchestra itself is solely responsible for the organization of concerts and the selection of repertoire, as well as the engaging of conductors and soloists. In 1860, the Subscription Concert Series was introduced, for which one conductor was engaged for an entire season. These concerts formed a solid artistic and economic basis that remains in place to this day. Beginning in 1933, the orchestra adapted a system of guest conductors, which promotes a wide spectrum of artistic encounters with the most prominent conductors of each generation.

The orchestra's touring activity commenced at the beginning of the 20th century and has since taken the orchestra to all continents on the globe. In recent years this has included regularly scheduled concerts in Germany, Japan, the USA and, in the future, China.

In 2018 the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra Academy was founded. The academy students will be selected in accordance with a strict, internationally oriented audition process and trained at the highest level during a two-year course of study. On September 1st, 2019 the first 12 academists started their studies in Vienna.

The Vienna Philharmonic has made it its mission to communicate the humanitarian message of music into the daily lives and consciousness of its listeners. From the beginning, the orchestra has displayed a strong social consciousness, characterized by a commitment to individuals in need and the fostering of young musicians. To this day, the orchestra performs numerous benefit concerts and develops initiatives for the disadvantaged.

The orchestra has been the recipient of numerous prized and awards. Since 2008, it has been supported by its exclusive sponsor ROLEX.

The Vienna Philharmonic performs approximately 40 concerts in Vienna annually, among them the New Year’s Concert and the Summer Night Concert Schnbrunn, which are broadcast in numerous countries around the world. The orchestra also has an annual summer residency at the Salzburg Festival and performs more than 50 concerts a year on its international tours. All of these activities underscore the reputation of the Vienna Philharmonic as one of the world’s finest orchestras.

Conductor: Valery Gergiev

Valery Gergiev is a vivid representative of the St Petersburg conducting school. His debut as a conductor at the Mariinsky (then Kirov) Theatre came in 1978 with Prokofiev's War and Peace. In 1988 Valery Gergiev was appointed Music Director of the Mariinsky Theatre, and in 1996 he became its Artistic and General Director.

With his arrival at the helm, it became a tradition to hold major festivals marking various anniversaries of composers. These festivals saw performances not only of well-known scores but also of rarely performed works or those never staged before at all. Through Gergiev's efforts the Mariinsky Theatre has revived Wagner's operas, by 2003 Der Ring des Nibelungen had been staged in full. That was the first complete Russian Ring production after an interval of almost a century and the first one in Russia to be performed in the original German.

Under Gergiev's direction the Mariinsky Theatre has become a major theatre and concert complex, without par anywhere in the world. His projects hosted by the Mariinsky Theatre include media broadcasting, on-line concert broadcasts and the establishment of a recording studio.

The Mariinsky Orchestra under Gergiev has scaled new heights, assimilating not just opera and ballet scores, but also an expansive symphony music repertoire including works by Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, Prokofiev, Shostakovich and many other composers.

Valery Gergiev's international activities are no less intensive. Having made debuts in 1991 at the Bayerische Staatsoper, in 1993 at Covent Garden and in 1994 at the Metropolitan Opera, he successfully continues to collaborate with the world's great opera houses. From 1995 to 2008 Gergiev was Principal Conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic (he remains its honorary conductor to this day), and from 2007 to 2015 of the London Symphony Orchestra. Since autumn 2015 he has headed the Munich Philharmonic and since summer 2018 the Verbier Festival Orchestra.

Valery Gergiev is the founder and director of prestigious international festivals including the Stars of the White Nights (since 1993) and the Moscow Easter Festival (since 2002). Since 2011 he has directed the organizational committee of the International Tchaikovsky Competition.

Valery Gergiev's musical and public activities have brought him prestigious State awards of Russia, Armenia, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Poland, France and Japan.

Piano: Denis Matsuev

Since his triumph in the 1998 at the 11th International Tchaikovsky Competition, Denis Matsuev has become a virtuoso in the grandest of Russian pianistic tradition and has quickly established himself as one of the most prominent pianists of his generation.

Mr. Matsuev performs with the world's best known orchestras, such as the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, Pittsburg Symphony Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, WDR of Cologne, BBC Symphony, “Philharmonia” Orchestra of London, Verbier and Budapest Festival Orchestras, Filarmonica della Scala, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, NHK Symphony, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra as well as the European Chamber Orchestra. He is continually re-engaged with the legendary Russian orchestras such as the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, the Mariinsky Orchestra and the Russian National Orchestra.

Denis gives recitals in the USA in Boston, Washington and New York in Carnegie Hall (Keyboard Virtuosos series), in London in Royal Festival Hall (International Piano series), Madrid in Auditorio Nacional de Musica, Amsterdam in Concertgebouw (Master Pianists series) and Moscow (the Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory).

Denis Matsuev regularly appears with the most distinguished conductors on a stage today, including Valery Gergiev, Yuri Temirkanov, Mariss Jansons, Zubin Mehta, Kurt Masur, Paavo Jarvi, Antonio Pappano, Charles Dutoit, Alain Gilbert, Leonard Slatkin, Myung-Whun Chung, Semyon Bychkov, Iván Fischer, Adam Fisher, Gianandrea Noseda, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, James Conlon, Vladimir Spivakov, Mikhail Pletnev, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Yury Bashmet and others.

Mr. Matsuev is a frequent guest of world famous music festivals such as Verbier Festival and Lucerne Music Festival in Switzerland, BBC Proms and Edinburgh International Festival in Great Britain, Schleswig-Holstein, Rheingau, Festspielhaus Baden-Baden in Germany, Les Chorégies d’Orange and Festival de la Rogue d’Anthéron in France, Ravinia and the Hollywood Bowl in the U.S., Chopin Festival in Poland, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Mito Festival in Italy, Montreux Festival in Switzerland, Enescu Festival in Romania, Baltic Sea Festival in Sweden and Stars of the White Nights Festival in Russia.

For 11 consecutive years Denis Matsuev has his original series at The Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory “Denis Matsuev invites…”. Many famous orchestras, prominent conductors, outstanding soloists have taken part in it.

In 2010, in Avery Fisher Hall, the New York Philharmonic gave the orchestra’s 15,000th concert – a number unmatched by any other orchestra. Denis Matsuev was a leading soloist in this unprecedented milestone concert, which was conducted by Maestro Valery Gergiev, and was praised highly by music critics.

For many years Denis Matsuev has led numerous musical festivals and educational projects which have added to his role as a prominent public figure. Since 2004 he has organized “Stars on Baikal” in Irkutsk, Siberia (in 2009 he was awarded the title of Honorary Citizen of Irkutsk), and since 2005 he has been the artistic director of the music festival “Crescendo” (a series of events held in international cities such as Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Tel Aviv, Kaliningrad, Paris and New York).

In 2010 he became the artistic director of Annecy Music Festival in Annecy, France, with the goal to bring together Russian and French music cultures. In 2012 Denis Matsuev became the artistic director of I International “Astana Piano Passion” Festival and Competition as well as the artistic director of International Festival and Competition “Sberbank DEBUT” in Kiev in 2013. In 2016 Denis Matsuev as the artistic director of the Competition and chairman of the Organizing Committee started a new competition for young pianists in Moscow - Grand Piano Competition. Additionally, Mr. Matsuev is the president of the charitable Russian foundation “New Names” that discovers and supports talented children and helps to develop music education in regions of his native Russia. More than 10000 children received monetary grants and/or opportunity to perform at the professional stage.

In 2007, RCA Red Seal released “Unknown Rachmaninoff” featuring Mr. Matsuev. The recording has received strong positive reviews praising his execution and creativity. His Carnegie Hall recital in November 2007 was recorded and released in 2009 as an album entitled “Denis Matsuev – Concert at Carnegie Hall.” The New York Times praised this performance writing “…his poetic instincts held fast in tender moments, with trills as thrillingly precise as one might ever hope to hear.”

Mariinsky Label releases include Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 3, Shostakovich Concertos No. 1, No. 2 and Schedrin’s Fifth with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra in the famed Mariinsky Concert Hall. Among many awards granted is the Five Star rating of BBC Music Magazine. Norman Lebrecht wrote: “Neither is a virtuoso vehicle and, the composer apart, there is no pianist who has stamped these works decisively as his or her own. Denis Matsuev, a Siberian who made his name in Rachmaninoff is perhaps the first to come close”.

In April 2013 Denis Matsuev presented the record (RCA Red Seal) with S. Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Rhapsody in Blue by G. Gershwin, accompanied by the New York Philharmonic under the baton of its music director Alan Gilbert.

In September 2013 the label LSO Live released a new disc with Denis Matsuev and LSO under baton of Valery Gergiev performing Symphonia Concertante by K. Szymanowski.

Gramophone has chosen Denis Matsuev’s recording of Tchaikovsky Concerti Nos. 1 & 2 as their recording of the month in April 2014.

“Matsuev’s Tchaikovsky No 1 is thrilling, the work’s drama excitingly to the fore – a new ‘personal benchmark’, says Jeremy Nicholas. That’s for you to decide, of course, but do hear it.” Gramophone (UK)

For many years Denis Matsuev has collaborated with the Sergei Rachmaninov Foundation, established by Alexander Rachmaninov, the grandson of the composer. Mr. Matsuev was chosen by the Foundation to perform and record Rachmaninov’s unknown pieces on the composer's own piano at the Rachmaninov house “Villa Senar” in Lucerne. Later, he became the artistic director of the Foundation. In 2013 – Rachmaninov’s 140th anniversary year – the Foundation presented series of concerts in the most prestigious concert halls throughout Russia and Europe.

Denis Matsuev is a laureate of prestigious “Shostakovich’s Prize” in Music as well as the State Prize of Russian Federation in Literature and Arts. He also is a “People’s Artist of Russia.” Denis Matsuev was named Honorary Professor of Moscow State University. He is a member of The Presidential Council for Culture and Arts, Honored Artist of Russia and he recently became the head of The Public Council under The Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation.

In February 2014 Denis Matsuev was awarded the honour of performing at the official Closing Ceremony of the XXII Winter Olympic games in Sochi.

In April 2014 UNESCO designated Denis Matsuev as a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador.

In 2016 Denis Matsuev was announced as 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia ambassador.

In December 2016 Denis Matsuev was awarded with State Order of Honour.

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