The pairing of Lisa Batiashvili and Gautier Capuçon in Brahms’s Double Concerto is a dream come true for both musicians and audiences. Seldom do two of the world’s very greatest artists join forces rather than playing solo concertos, instead playing a work together that demands the same degree of instrumental virtuosity along with the experience of a chamber music players. Moreover, Lisa Batiashvili and Gautier Capuçon have played Brahms’s Double Concerto together many times, and their appearance at the Rudolfinum with the Czech Philharmonic will be recorded and released by the DECCA label.
Brahms dedicated his Double Concerto to his friend, the violinist Joseph Joachim, as a sign of the renewal of their lifelong friendship, which had been disrupted by Joachim’s divorce when Brahms took sides with Joachim’s wife Amalie. For the concerto’s dedication, Brahms wrote the sentence: “To him, for whom it was written”. So that there could be no doubt about who was meant, he used the musical motif A-E-F, a permutation of the anagram of Joachim’s personal motto F-A-E: Frei aber einsam – Free but Lonesome.
Koncert pro housle, violoncello a orchestr a moll op. 102
Symfonie č. 5 d moll op. 47
Gautier Capuçon is a true 21st century ambassador for the cello. Performing each season with many of the worldʼs foremost conductors and instrumentalists, he is also founder and leader of the Classe dʼExcellence de Violoncelle at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris based in the stunning new Auditorium designed by Frank Gehry.
During 2017/2018 Capuçon will appear as soloist in a number of orchestral tours across Europe, the US and in Asia. In Europe he will tour with Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, Wiener Symphoniker (Philippe Jordan), and the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester. In the US he will tour with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (Charles Dutoit) and the National Center for Performing Arts; and in Asia with hr-Sinfonieorchester (Andres Orozco-Estrada) and as part of the Verbier Festival with Gabor Takacz. Other concerto highlights include return performances with Gewandhausorchester Leipzig (Herbert Blomstedt), Wiener Philharmoniker (Semyon Bychkov), Orchestre de Paris (Yu Long), San Francisco Symphony Orchestra (Stephen Deneve), City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (Mirga Graþinytë-Tyla) and London Philharmonia (Paavo Järvi).
A regular recital and chamber musician, Capuçon appears annually in the major halls and festivals worldwide. Highlights this season include a return to Carnegie Hall (with Daniil Trifonov), an extensive international recital tour with duo partner Jérôme Ducros, and performances at Verbier Festival with: Lisa Batiashvili, Christoph Eschenbach, Janine Jansen, Leonidas Kavakos, Yuja Wang and Tabea Zimmermann. Other artists with whom Capuçon regularly performs include Martha Argerich, Daniel Barenboim, Frank Braley, Renaud Capuçon, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, and the Artemis and Ébène quartets.
Gautier Capuçon collaborates with contemporary composers including, amongst others, Lera Auerbach, Karol Beffa, Esteban Benzecry, Nicola Campogrande, Qigang Chen, Jerome Ducros, Henry Dutilleux, Thierry Escaich, Philippe Manoury, Bruno Mantovani, Krzysztof Penderecki, Wolfgang Rihm, and Jörg Widmann.
Recording exclusively for Erato (Warner Classics), Capuçon and has won multiple ECHO Klassik awards and holds an extensive discography. In 2016/2017 he released Beethoven Sonatas with Frank Braley to critical acclaim. Other recent recordings include Shostakovichʼs Cello Concertos with the Mariinsky Orchestra and Valery Gergiev; and Schubertʼs String Quintet with Quatuor Ébène. Prior to that he won plaudits for a recital disc of music by Schubert, Schumann, Debussy, Britten and Carter with Frank Braley, and Saint-Saënsʼs First Cello Concerto and La Muse et le Poète with the Orchestre philharmonique de Radio France and Lionel Bringuier. He has also recorded chamber music with Martha Argerich, Nicholas Angelich, Renaud Capuçon and Gabriela Montero; and in 2013 Deutsche Grammophon released a DVD featuring Capuçon as soloist with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Gustavo Dudamel in a live performance of Haydnʼs Cello Concerto No. 1.
Born in Chambéry in 1981, Capuçon began playing the cello at the age of five. He studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur in Paris with Philippe Muller and Annie Cochet-Zakine, and later with Heinrich Schiff in Vienna. The winner of various first prizes in many leading international competitions, including the International André Navarra Prize, Capuçon was named “New Talent of the Yearˮ by Victoires de la Musique in 2001.
Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic, Semyon Bychkov was born in Leningrad in 1952, immigrated to the United States in 1975, and has been based in Europe since the mid-1980s. Like the Czech Philharmonic, Bychkov has one foot firmly in the cultures both of the East and the West.
Following his early concerts with the Czech Philharmonic in 2013, Bychkov and the Orchestra devised The Tchaikovsky Project, a series of concerts, residencies and studio recordings which allowed them the luxury of exploring Tchaikovsky’s music together. Its first fruit was released by Decca in October 2016, followed in August 2017 by the release of the Manfred symphony. The projectculminates in 2019 with residencies in Prague, Vienna and Paris, and Decca’s release of all Tchaikovsky’s symphonies, the three piano concertos, Romeo & Juliet, Serenade for Strings and Francesca da Rimini.
Fourteen years after leaving the former Soviet Union, Bychkov returned to St Petersburg in 1989 as the Philharmonic’s Principal Guest Conductor, the same year as he was named Music Director of the Orchestre de Paris. His international career had taken off several years earlier when a series of high-profile cancellations resulted in invitations to conduct the New York Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In 1997, he was appointed Chief Conductor of the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne, and the following year, Chief Conductor of the Dresden Semperoper.
Bychkov conducts the major orchestras and at the major opera houses in the U.S. and Europe. In addition to his title with the Czech Philharmonic, he holds the Günter Wand Conducting Chair with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, with which he appears annually at the BBC Proms, and the honorary Klemperer Chair of Conducting at the Royal Academy of Music. He was named “Conductor of the Year” at the 2015 International Opera Awards. On the concert platform, the combination of innate musicality and rigorous Russian pedagogy has ensured that Bychkov’s performances are highly anticipated. With repertoire that spans four centuries, the coming season brings two weeks of concerts with the New York Philharmonic, which includes the US première of Thomas Larcher’s Symphony No. 2, and the Cleveland Orchestra where he will conduct Detlev Glanert, Martinů and Smetana. In Europe, his concerts include performances with the Leipzig Gewandhaus, Munich and Berlin Philharmonic Orchestras, Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, and the Royal Concertgebouw.
Bychkov’s recording career began in 1986 when he signed with Philips and began a significant collaboration which produced an extensive discography with the Berlin Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio, Royal Concertgebouw, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Philharmonic and Orchestre de Paris. Subsequently a series of benchmark recordings – the result of his 13-year collaboration (1997–2010) with the WDR Symphony Orchestra Cologne – include a complete cycle of Brahms’s Symphonies, and works by Strauss, Mahler, Shostakovich, Rachmaninoff, Verdi, Detlev Glanert and York Höller. His recording of Wagner’s Lohengrin was voted BBC Music Magazine’s Record of the Year in 2010; and his recent recording of Schmidt’s Symphony No. 2 with the Vienna Philharmonic was selected as BBC Music Magazine’s Record of the Month.
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