Frenchman François-Xavier Roth is one of the most versatile conductors of our time. Since 2015 he has been chief conductor of the Gürzenich Orchestra, which also plays at the Cologne Opera. As music director of the former SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden and Freiburg, he focused his attention mainly on contemporary repertoire until 2016. He also regularly presented largely early music together with the ensemble Les Siècles that he founded, playing on period instruments. At the first of his three Hamburg guest appearances in this season, he has an exceptionally flexible ensemble at his disposal in the shape of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra; the flexibility applies both to the line-up of musicians and to the orchestra’s very varied repertoire.
Regardless of which orchestra he is conducting, Roth’s musical creed is always the same: »Get rid of the idea that sophisticated culture only stands for a fragment of society.« The charismatic conductor would much rather speak to a wider public. Thus his programme in Hamburg not only covers many different periods, it also has a few surprises in store as far as instrumentation is concerned.
In Haydn’s symphony »The Philosopher«, for instance, two cor anglais contribute to the dignified mood, while the »Drum Roll« Symphony already reveals its special feature in the title. Between the two works lie the expressive Double Concerto for two (!) String Orchestras, Piano and Timpani by Czech composer Bohuslav Martinů and György Ligeti’s »Hamburgisches Konzert«, in which the composer experiments with alternative tuning systems. For the latter work, the orchestra is joined by Stefan Dohr, solo horn player of the Berlin Philharmonic.
Mahler Chamber Orchestra
Stefan Dohr french horn
Holger Groschopp piano
Matthias Kelemen timpani
conductor François-Xavier Roth
Sinfonie Es-Dur Hob. I:22 »Der Philosoph«
Doppelkonzert für zwei Streichorchester, Klavier und Pauken
– Interval –
Hamburgisches Konzert für Horn und Kammerorchester
Appel interstellaire für Horn solo / aus: Des Canyons aux étoiles
Sinfonie Es-Dur Hob. I:103 »Mit dem Paukenwirbel«
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