Fantastic Scherzo for large orchestra op. 25
Serenade after Plato’s Symposium for solo violin, string orchestra, harp, and percussion
Symphony No. 5 H 310
Symphony No. 5 in F Major op. 76
One of the most exciting Czech conductors, Jiří Rožeň is very passionate about contemporary music and rediscovering seldom played pieces.
During the season 2017/2018 he will make his debuts with the Wiener Concert-Verien in the Musikverein Wien and Kölner Philharmonie. Further debuts including the Bruckner Orchester Linz, Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic Orchestra, Czech Chamber Philharmonic Pardubice, State Philharmonic Košice. Jiří is re-invited to the PKF – Prague Philharmonia, Karlovy Vary Symphony Orchestra and Brno Philharmonic. Furthermore, he is assisting to Jukka-Pekka Saraste at the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie.
He recently completed his two years appointment as the Assistant Conductor to Thomas Dausgaard and Donald Runnicles at the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Leverhulme Conducting Fellow at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. He assisted, for example, at the BBC Proms and Edinburgh Festival, both 2016 and 2017. During his time in Scotland he conducted the BBC SSO, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Orchestra of the Scottish Opera, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland Symphony Orchestra and the Red Note Ensemble.
He was a finalist of two prestigious conducting competitions: the 2015 Nestlé and Salzburg Festival Young Conductors Award and the 2014 Donatella Flick LSO Conducting Competition, during which he led the London Symphony Orchestra in concert.
Past and future collaborations with acclaimed soloists include Olga Scheps, Kirill Gerstein, Lawrence Brownlee, Mahan Esfahani, Kateřina Kněžíková, Roman Patočka, Olga Šroubková, Marek Kozák, Vilém Veverka.
He conducted orchestras such as the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, Orchestra Philharmonique de Radio France, Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, Bremer Philharmoniker, Lucerne Festival Academy Orchestra as an active participant of masterclasses with Daniele Gatti, Bernard Haitink, David Zinman, Jiří Bělohlávek, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Peter Eötvös, Christopher Seaman, Edo de Waart, David Robertson.
In 2017 he made a succesful debuts at the International Janáček May Festival with Lawrence Brownlee and at the Festival Allegretto Žilina, recieving the Prize of the Janáček Philharmonic Ostrava and an invitation to the Slovak Sinfonietta. In 2016 he made a highly acclaimed debut at the Prague Spring Festival with the PKF – Prague Philharmonia, with whom he regularly works. In 2015, he debuted at the Salzburg Festival with the Camerata Salzburg and appeared at the Lucerne Festival within the Lucerne Festival Academy in 2013.
Jiří is also at home in the world of opera. In Glasgow he conducted and assisted Stravinskyʼs Mavra, The Bear by Walton, Straussʼs Fledermaus and Brittenʼs Owen Wingrave. He also conducted Ravelʼs L’enfant et les sortilegès with the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra in 2014. In 2012, he conducted the world premiere of the contemporary opera Eine Kluge Else by Sven Daigger at the Brücken Festival for the New Music in Rostock.
Jiří studied conducting at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Zurich University of the Arts, Hamburg University of Music and Theatre, University Mozarteum Salzburg and at the Prague Conservatory. His mentors include Garry Walker, Dennis Russell Davies, Ulrich Windfuhr, Johannes Schlaefli and Hynek Farkač. Jiří was also a fellow of the German Music Council’s Conductors Forum.
Vadim Gluzman’s extraordinary artistry brings to life the glorious violinistic tradition of the 19th and 20th centuries. Gluzman’s wide repertoire embraces new music and his performances are heard around the world through live broadcasts and a striking catalogue of award-winning recordings exclusively for the BIS label.
The Israeli violinist appears regularly with major orchestras such as the Berlin Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Israel Philharmonic, London Symphony, and Leipzig Gewandhaus. Gluzman has enjoyed collaborations with many of today’s leading conductors. His festival appearances include performances at Verbier, Tanglewood, Ravinia, and Lockenhaus, as well as the North Shore Chamber Music Festival in Chicago, Illinois, which was founded by Gluzman and pianist Angela Yoffe, his wife and recital partner.
Highlights of his 2016/17 season included appearances in London at The Proms with the BBC Symphony and Edward Gardner, with the Chicago Symphony under Neeme Järvi, the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra Hamburg under Christoph von Dohnányi, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin under Tugan Sokhiev, and with the Orchestre de Paris under Juraj Valčuha. He toured the United States with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, including an engagement in New York at Carnegie Hall, and performed with Baltimore Symphony, NHK Orchestra in Tokyo, and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France in Paris, among other engagements. Gluzman led performances with the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra and the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra in Columbus, Ohio, where he continued in his third year as Creative Partner and Principal Guest Artist.
Last season Mr. Gluzman gave the world premiere performances of new concertos written for him by two of today’s most important composers: Sofia Gubaidulina’s Triple Concerto for Violin, Cello and Bayan with Elsbeth Moser, Nicolas Altstaedt and the NDR Radio Philharmonic in Hannover under Andrew Manze; and Elena Firsova’s Concerto for Violin and Cello with Johannes Moser and the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin under Tugan Sokhiev. Gluzman has given live and recorded premieres of other works by Gubaidulina, as well as Giya Kancheli, Peteris Vasks, Michael Daugherty, and most recently, Lera Auerbach.
Vadim Gluzman’s latest CD for the BIS label features Sergey Prokofiev’s Violin Concertos No. 1 and 2, as well as the composer’s Sonata for Violin Solo, with Estonian National Orchestra conducted by Neeme Järvi. Accolades for his extensive discography on BIS include the Diapason d’Or of the Year, Gramophone’s Editor’s Choice, Classica Magazine’s esteemed Choc de Classica award, and Disc of the Month by The Strad, BBC Music Magazine, ClassicFM, and others.
Born in the former Soviet Union in 1973, Gluzman began violin studies at age 7. He studied in Latvia and in Russia before moving to Israel in 1990, where he became a student of Yair Kless. In the United States, he studied with Arkady Fomin in Dallas and at the Juilliard School with Dorothy DeLay and Masao Kawasaki. Early in his career, Gluzman enjoyed the encouragement and mentorship of Isaac Stern which continued until the Stern’s passing in 2001. In 1994 he received the prestigious Henryk Szeryng Foundation Career Award.
Vadim Gluzman plays the legendary 1690 ‘ex-Leopold Auer’ Stradivari on extended loan to him through the generosity of the Stradivari Society of Chicago.
Born into a Ukrainian-Jewish family in Lawrence, Massachusetts, Leonard Bernstein graduated from Harvard and the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and became Serge Koussevitzky’s assistant at the Boston Symphony Orchestra. After stepping in for the ill Bruno Walter at short notice in 1943 to conduct the New York Philharmonic, he quickly became a sought-after conductor. From 1958 to 1969 he was the music director of the New York Philharmonic and subsequently guested with many important orchestras throughout the world, and presented numerous educational and popularising TV programmes until the end of his life. In his works he drew on his performing experience with, and love of, jazz and popular music.
During the summer of 1954 he composed an orchestral piece with a solo violin part, commissioned by the Koussevitzky Music Foundation and Bernstein’s friend, the violinist Isaac Stern. The Serenade for solo violin, harp, strings and percussion in five movements ranks among the most lyrical of Bernstein’s orchestral works. It is inspired by Plato’s dialogue, Symposium, which deals with the nature and purpose of love, through praise of Eros, the god of love and masculinity. Appearing in the dialogue are the ancient Greek thinkers who came to the symposium in Athens for this purpose: the poet Agathon, who hosts the others in his home; Phaedrus, the Athenian; Pausanias, the geographer; Eryximachus, the doctor; Aristophanes, the playwright; Socrates, the philosopher; and Alcibiades, the general. The composition depicts the moods evoked by reading the text; this is poly-stylistic music, strong and original. It was premiered in September 1954 in Venice, with Isaac Stern performing the solo violin part and Leonard Bernstein conducting the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.
In 1875, at the age of thirty-four, Antonín Dvořák (1841–1904) composed his breakthrough work – Symphony No. 5 in F major, Op. 76 – within a mere seven weeks. At the time, his financial situation had finally begun to take a turn for the better, and as a result of being granted a scholarship his standard of living markedly improved.
Dvořák’s Fifthbecame a seminal piece owing to the forcible formal treatment of its movements, in which the composer was able to apply the essence of his bountiful creative inventiveness and masterfully “put it together”. The compositional language became crystal clear and Dvořák could thus manifest his singular style as a mature symphonist. In expressive terms, the first three movements and the finale come across as contrastive. The music vaults from the pastoral tones of the introductory movement through the lyrical and melancholic slow movement to the lightened dance scherzo. The fourth movement ushers in a totally different type of music – a torrential drama that is one of the most virtuosic accomplishments within Dvořák’s orchestral creation.
When, thirteen years after completing his Symphony No. 5, Dvořák was about to deliver it to Simrock, he had revised the work. And when carrying out the modifications, he decided to dedicate the composition to the world-renowned German conductor Hans von Bülow. In a letter dated 25 November 1887, Bülow replied: “Most honoured Master! A dedication from you – alongside Brahms, the most gifted composer of the present day – is a decoration higher than a Grand Cross from a prince. With the most heartfelt thanks, I accept this honour. Your devoted admirer Hans von Bülow.”
Symphony No. 5 in F major, Op. 76, was premiered in March 1879 in Prague under the baton of Adolf Čech. Nine years passed before its first performance abroad, on 7 April 1888 at the Crystal Palace in London, conducted by August Manns. The English composer and music critic Charles Barry wrote in a letter to Dvořák: “Dear friend! I take pleasure in being perhaps the first to inform you that yesterday your symphony Op. 76 was wonderfully performed and really warmly received. Without doing injustice to the others, I am compelled to say that the final movement is truly inspired and written in a masterful form.”
Josef Suk completed his Fantastic Scherzo for Large Orchestra, Op. 25 in 1903. The work was premiered at the Rudolfinum in April 1905 by the Prague Conservatory orchestra conducted by Jindřich Kaan. The title suggests a joyful, whimsical work, but Suk would not have been the maestro he was had he not included elements that disrupt the idyll; a surprising, variable metre creates a disturbing and absurd effect. The brilliant orchestration is modern and reminiscent of the works of French impressionists.
The composition is introduced by a playful theme from the woodwinds. Soon, with the entry of cellos and trumpets, the mood darkens. The strings then pick up the opening theme and the music flows in a waltz rhythm, interrupted by threatening interventions from the percussion that vary the metre. The middle section is ornamented with trills from the woodwinds while, underneath, strings and French horns repeat the main theme in diminution. In the reprise, the woodwinds and then the strings bring back the waltz and the work is brought to a conclusion with a lively coda.
Wed – Fri / 6:30 p.m. / Rudolfinum – Suk Hall or Western Lounge
Location is specified for each concert in the concert programme and navigation signs at the Rudolfinum.
Pre-concert talks are offered free of charge as a bonus before the evening concerts of the A and B subscription series. They are given by conductors, soloists and members of the Czech Philharmonic, as well as musicologists and music writers who take part in discussions or lectures which will prepare for the evening concert.
They are presented by Eva Hazdrová-Kopecká, Pavel Ryjáček or Petr Kadlec.
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