NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester / Matthias Brandt / Alan Gilbert
Strawinsky in Hamburg
Chief conductor Alan Gilbert and the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra take the Stravinsky Festival to one of its climaxes with the works »Le sacre du printemps« (The Rite of Spring) and »Oedipus Rex«. In September 1958 the NDR Symphony Orchestra and Choir travelled to Venice together with an armada of soloists to play concerts conducted by Stravinsky himself. The Russian composer chose a programme featuring a combination of works that he had never put on together before: »Le sacre du printemps« and »Oedipus Rex«. In Venice, the city that had almost become a second home for him, he performed these works together for the first time. Alan Gilbert now honours Stravinsky by taking up this special programming from the orchestra's guest appearance in Venice.
The two works are both truly monumental: »Le sacre du printemps« is Stravinsky's outstanding work from the second decade of the 20th century, while »Oedipus Rex« has the same position in his oeuvre from the decade after that. Moreover, these two important works of modern music share the character of a relentless ritual, which is depicted in music in unprecedentedly drastic fashion. They are both among the most oft-performed of Stravinsky's works to this day, and have remained touchstones for any orchestra's virtuosity.
The NDR Symphony Orchestra was the only German orchestra to ever perform »Le sacre du printemps« with the composer himself on the rostrum. In his old age, Stravinsky tended to avoid the demanding work – after all, he was already 76 in 1958. »The Rite of Spring« had long since become world-famous, but the NDR performance was nonetheless a long-awaited premiere for Stravinsky: here for the first time the composer, who was always obsessed with details, had the chance to conduct his painstakingly revised version of the score.
NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester
MDR Rundfunkchor Leipzig
Brenden Gunnell tenor
Sarah Connolly mezzo-soprano
Tomasz Konieczny bass baritone
Sir John Tomlinson baritone
Attilio Glaser tenor
Matthias Brandt narrator
conductor Alan Gilbert
Oedipus Rex / Oratorische Oper in zwei Akten nach Sophokles für Soli, Sprecher, Männerchor und Orchester
Le sacre du printemps / Bilder aus dem heidnischen Russland
19:00 / Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Großer Saal
NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra Subscription C
Stravinsky in Hamburg