Midori performs Dvořák’s Violin Concerto in Amsterdam and Antwerp (May 2024)

Midori performs on May 24 and 25 at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and in Antwerp with Dvorak’s Violin Concerto conducted by Elim Chan. The Antwerp Symphony Orchestra will be playing. At the beginning of May she was in the USA as part of her Orchestra Residencies Program and in June she will be touring in Japan with her foundation ICEP (International Community Engagement Program).


May 24 Amsterdam, Concertgebouw
Antwerp Symphony Orchestra
Dvořák: Violin Concerto in A minor op. 53
Brahms: Symphony No. 1 in c minor, op. 68

May 25 Antwerp, Queen Elisabeth Hall
Antwerp Symphony Orchestra
Dvořák: Violin Concerto in A minor op. 53
Brahms: Symphony No. 1 in c minor, op. 68

Omer Meir Wellber conducts Richard Wagner’s “Tristan and Isolde” at Teatro Massimo in Palermo (May 2024)

On May 19, Omer Meir Wellber will conduct the premiere of Richard Wagner’s “Tristan and Isolde” at Teatro Massimo in Palermo where Wellber has been Music Director since 2020. With this new production directed by Daniele Menghini, the opera returns to Teatro Massimo after 60 years.

“Wagner’s ‘Tristan and Isolde’ represents a moment of great importance for the music history which it has changed, for the better or for worse. The complexity of the opera, notoriously among the most difficult to stage, makes it one of the most challenging productions of the Teatro Massimo’s season, but it would be so for any other theater in the world. The score deals with common themes such as love, betrayal, forgiveness but does so with such immense depth that it requires the orchestra, with whom we have reached a very high level of preparation in Palermo, to give voice to the subconscious of the characters, revealing their unexpressed thoughts.”, says Omer Meir Wellber.

The cast of “Tristan and Isolde” includes Swedish soprano Nina Stemme who will give her final performance as Isolde after 30 years of being a leading interpreter of the role. In the first two performances, the part of King Marke will be performed by German bass René Pape.


May 19, Palermo, Teatro Massimo, 6.30 pm          Premiere
Richard Wagner: Tristan and Isolde

Libretto by Richard Wagner
Conductor: Omer Meir Wellber
Director: Daniele Menghini
Scene Designs: Davide Signorini
Costume Designs: Nika Campisi
Lighting Designs: Gianni Bertoli
Dramaturgy: Davide Carnevali
Assistant Director and Dramaturgy of the image: Martin Verdross
Coreographic Movements: Davide Tagliavini
Music Director Assistant: Tohar Gil
Second Assistant Director: Giovanni Ciacci
Teatro Massimo Chorus, Orchestra and Ballet
Chorus Master: Salvatore Punturo
Ballet Master: Jean-Sébastien Colau

Tristan: Michael Weinius (19, 22, 29) / Samuel Sakker (24, 26, 31)
König Marke: René Pape (19, 22) / Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev (24, 26, 29, 31)
Isolde: Nina Stemme (19, 22, 29) / Allison Oakes (24, 26, 31)
Kurwenal: Andrei Bondarenko
Melot: Miljenko Turk
Brangäne: Violeta Urmana (19, 24, 29) / Irene Roberts (22, 26, 31)
Ein junger Seemann/Ein Hirt: Andrea Schifaudo
Ein Steuermann: Arturo Espinosa

Other performances: May 22, 24, 26, 29, 31

Dresden Music Festival 2024 – “Horizons” (May 2024)

The Dresden Music Festival begins a four-week celebration of music in all its facets and genres: on May 9 with a historically informed concertante performance of Richard Wagner’s “Die Walküre” with the Dresden Festival Orchestra and Concerto Köln at Kulturpalast, conducted by Kent Nagano. This concert is part of “The Wagner Cycles”, a project by the Dresden Music Festival under the overall artistic direction of Kent Nagano and Jan Vogler (Intendant of the Dresden Music Festival) which will bring all parts of Wagner’s Ring in historically informed concert performances to the stage until 2026. “The Wagner Cycles” will be continued with “Siegfried” in 2025.

Next concerts of the opening weekend: On May 10, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra under the baton of Klaus Mäkelä at Kulturpalast with Bruckners 5th Symphony, on May 11 Francesco Piemontesi’s piano recital at Palais im Großen Garten and the jazz-funk band Lehmanns Brothers at Reithalle Dresden and on May 12, with “Musica non grata” presenting two almost forgotten female composers (Amélie Nikisch & Rachel Danziger van Embden) at Palais im Großen Garten and in the evening, Dr. Harald Lesch and Merlin Ensemble Wien: “The Four Seasons in Climate Change” with music by Antonio Vivaldi at Kulturpalast.

Further information can be found on the Dresden Music Festival website:

Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and Manfred Honeck on European tour in August and September 2024 (April 2024)

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and its Music Director Manfred Honeck will begin their European tour on August 22 with a concert at the Salzburg Festival as the only US American orchestra being presented this summer and continues on to Grafenegg, Merano, Hamburg (2x), Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Cologne, Wiesbaden, and Vienna. Guest soloists on this tour are Yefim Bronfman, María Dueñas and Anne-Sophie Mutter. On its 15th European tour with Manfred Honeck, the orchestra will present works by Mahler, Mendelssohn, Rachmaninov, Stravinsky and John Adams’ Short Ride in a Fast Machine, which the PSO commissioned and premiered in 1986.

“I look for the depth of originality in a piece,” says Manfred Honeck, Music Director. “This tour has at its center Mahler’s First and Fifth symphonies, and I have looked back to the tradition from which they came to inform our interpretation and performance. I seek to combine the sharp and earnest energy of the Pittsburgh Symphony, one of the best in the world, with an original understanding of the music. The result is not a ‘return’ to some old ideal, but a new way forward — a fresh authenticity — which may even register as irreverent, but which is really truer to the music, and honors it. We are extremely fortunate to have as close and regular collaborators the great pianist Yefim Bronfman, the outstanding violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter, and rising star violinist María Dueñas. Each is perfect on their instrument—musically wise and truly exciting. They understand deeply the music they are playing, and convey that understanding through the performance. I’m very pleased they’re joining us for this tour, and I look forward to European audiences hearing them together with the Pittsburgh Symphony. I think they may be surprised.”

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, located in the USA, is formerly known as the “Steel City”. It is a city in transition,  with its vibrant culture centered around Andy Warhol Museum, Carnegie Museum of Art and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. The orchestra has developed its “unique Pittsburgh sound” in the past by working with Otto Klemperer, Fritz Reiner, William Steinberg, André Previn, Lorin Maazel and Mariss Jansons, among others.

“I am hugely looking forward to the European tour with my favorite American orchestra: the PSO,” says Anne-Sophie Mutter. Making music with Manfred Honeck is ever so special to me and I couldn’t be happier to have the glorious Mendelssohn concerto on tour with us. And a surprise encore…”

“The reputation of the orchestra in Europe is incredibly well-regarded, and the invitations to be a part of the world’s premiere venues and festivals is a testament to the caliber and quality of the Orchestra under Music Director Manfred Honeck’s leadership,” says President & CEO Melia Tourangeau. “We are honored to be the only American orchestra at the Salzburg Festival again this year, which is arguably one of the most prestigious festivals in the world. Additionally, being invited to Europe’s capital cities and showcasing the orchestra on the top stages like the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, the Cologne Philharmonie, and launching the fall season at the Vienna Konzerthaus is an honor and privilege. The reputation of the orchestra with these invitations is a reflection of the city that supports us, and we are proud to represent Pittsburgh on the international stage.”

Please be in touch if you are interested in speaking to Manfred Honeck about his artistic vision and goals for the orchestra also in his role as a longtime music director in the United States or with CEO Melia Tourangeau.

In the run-up of the tour, the PSO will release a new CD with Anton Bruckner’s 7th Symphony and Mason Bates’ Resurrexit on Reference Recordings on July 19 to mark the 200th anniversary of Anton Bruckner’s birth.



All dates of the tour


Mari Kodama & Kent Nagano – New release on Pentatone: Mozart & Poulenc CD (April 2024)

The pianists Mari Kodama, Momo Kodama, Karin Kei Nagano and conductor Kent Nagano present Double and Triple Piano Concertos by Mozart and Poulenc, together with the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande on a new CD recording (Pentatone). Similar to Mozart’s own practice of making music with his family, the Nagano-Kodama family recorded Mozart’s piano concerto No. 7 for 3 pianos and No.10 for 2 pianos as well as Poulenc’s concerto for 2 pianos and orchestra. The CD will be released on Pentatone on April 26, 2024.

Making music with family members is always something very special. The level of intimacy is incomparably higher, the shared understanding often deeper, the tension more exciting and grueling, because it always involves personal relationships that go far beyond professional music-making. Once we actually succeed in letting ourselves be carried away together by the music, magic unfolds, which in turn affects our personal relationships deeply. This project has more than just fulfilled our expectations. A dream has come true.” – Mari Kodama, Momo Kodama, Karin Kei Nagano and Kent Nagano

Mozart & Poulenc | Double & Triple Piano Concertos
Mari Kodama – piano
Momo Kodama – piano
Karin Kei Nagano – piano (in Piano Concerto No. 7 K. 242)
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Federico Kasik – Guest Concertmaster
Kent Nagano – conductor

Omer Meir Wellber conducts the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra in Hamburg and Lübeck (April 2024)

The Israeli conductor Omer Meir Wellber will conduct the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra in Hamburg and Lübeck on April 18, 19 and 21. The program includes Fauré’s Pelléas et Mélisande Suite, Ravel’s 2nd Piano Concerto and Schubert’s 3rd Symphony. The concert on April 21 at 11 a.m. will be broadcast live on the radio on NDR Kultur.

April 18 & 21     Hamburg, Elbphilharmonie
NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra
Fauré: Pelléas et Mélisande Suite Op. 80
Ravel: 2nd Piano Concerto
Schubert: Symphony No. 3

April 19              Lübeck, Music and Congress Hall
Program see April 18

Kent Nagano receives the Brahms Prize 2024 (March 2024)

The Brahms-Gesellschaft Schleswig-Holstein is awarding this year’s Brahms Prize to the renowned conductor Kent Nagano. The California-born maestro has been celebrated worldwide for decades for his conducting achievements in both the symphonic oeuvre and the opera repertoire. In recent years in particular, as GMD of the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra, he has increasingly focussed on Johannes Brahms and opened up new perspectives on the work of the North German composer. […]

The award ceremony for the Brahms Prize, which is endowed with EUR 10,000, will take place on 29 September 2024 at 7.30 pm in St. Bartholomew’s Church in Wesselburen. Kent Nagano will be accompanied by the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra, which will perform works by Johannes Brahms and Richard Strauss under his baton and in his honour.


The 2024/25 season in Hamburg with Kent Nagano

Georges Delnon, Artistic Director of the Hamburg State Opera, and Kent Nagano, Hamburg’s General Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra, presented the 2024/25 season and concert season in a press conference on March 11, 2024.

Kent Nagano is focussing on contemporary music in his final season in Hamburg: he will conduct the world premiere of Unsuk Chin’s new opera Die dunkle Seite des Mondes (The Dark Side of the Moon), who is one of the most important composers of our present time and this year’s winner of the Ernst von Siemens Music Prize.
Kent Nagano will also conduct the world premiere of Die Illusionen des William Mallory (The Illusions of William Mallory), an opera by Rodolphe Bruneau-Boulmier about the rise and fall of an underdog, based on a true story (text by Inge Kloepfer).

Other new productions are Carl Orff’s Trionfi and Ariadne auf Naxos by Strauss, completing the great success of the Strauss-trilogy by Kent Nagano and Dmitri Tcherniakov after Elektra and Salome. During the 2024/25 season, the Hamburg State Opera revives numerous important productions of the past years, like Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner or Jaques Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann which Kent Nagano will conduct.

The concert seasons starts with Carl Orff’s Camina Burana at Rathaus Open Air in August under the baton of Kent Nagano. In the Philharmonic Concerts, Kent Nagano conducts György Ligeti’s Lux Aeterna, Anton Bruckner’s Ninth Symphony and the world premiere of the symphony Anahata by Argentinian composer Alex Nante. Nante’s symphony was commissioned by the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra and have its world premiere in the last Philharmonic Concert conducted by Kent Nagano during his tenure as chief conductor. 

All information about the concerts and performances with Kent Nagano in Hamburg can be found here.
You can download the current season brochure here.

Please read more information about the 2024/25 season in the press release.

Omer Meir Wellber on tour in Asia with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra (March 2024)

Today, conductor Omer Meir Wellber set off on a two-week tour of Asia with the Vienna Symphony Orchestra. The tour program includes nine concerts with three different programs in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.

In Japan, works by Brahms, the 1st Symphony and the 1st Piano Concerto with pianist Hisako Kawamura will be performed under the direction of Omer Meir Wellber. In Korea, the program includes Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with Bomsori and the 1st Symphony by Johannes Brahms; in Taiwan, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Vienna State Opera Chorus and the Taipei Philharmonic Chorus and Wagner’s “Tannhäuser” Overture.

“Asia is one of the regular stops on the Vienna Symphony Orchestra’s annual tour calendar,” says Artistic Director Jan Nast. “As the orchestra of the City of Vienna, we are ambassadors for one of the world’s most important music capitals. Last year in Korea and China, we experienced how enthusiastically our music is received in Asia – it makes me and the orchestra proud to be regularly invited to Japan, Korea and Taiwan.”

“It’s very nice to be back on tour with this orchestra,” says conductor Omer Meir Wellber. “After performing Beethoven’s 9th with the Symphony Orchestra at the Vienna Konzerthaus on New Year’s Eve, I am very pleased that we are now touring Asia with this work and a varied program, thus engaging in a musical dialogue with our audience there.”

All tour dates:

March 13 Tokyo, Suntory Hall
Brahms: Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1 in D minor
Brahms: Symphony No. 1 in C minor, op. 68

March 14 Tokyo, Suntory Hall
Beethoven: Symphony No.8 in F major
Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major

March 15 Hyogo, Hyogo Performing Arts Center
Program see March 13

March 17 Daegu, Daegu Concert House
Tchaikovsky: Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in D major, op. 35
Brahms: Symphony No. 1 in C minor, op. 68

March 19 Sejong, Sejong Art Center
Program see March 17

March 20 Seoul, Seoul Arts Center
Program see March 17

March 22 Taipei, National Concert Hall
Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op. 125

Hila Baggio, soprano
Stefanie Iranyi, mezzo-soprano
Michael Schade, tenor
Erwin Schrott, bass-baritone

March 23 Tainan, Cultural Center, Performance Hall
Program see March 22

March 24 Tainan, Concert Hall
Program see March 22

Jan Vogler & Amanda Gorman on the Late Night Show with Stephen Colbert (February 2024)

Cellist Jan Vogler and award-winning lyricist Amanda Gorman were guests on Stephen Colbert’s US Late Night Show on February 27. The “duo” was invited as a live act and together they performed an excerpt from their joint concert program on the stage of the late night show.  Stephen Colbert’s show is one of the biggest and best-known late night shows in America, to which only a few classical musicians have ever been invited. In their performance, Amanda Gorman and Jan Vogler combined Gorman’s poems with the cello suites by Johann Sebastian Bach.

The premiere of this project took place on February 17 in the almost sold-out Carnegie Hall in New York. On Colbert’s show, they performed the encore of the Carnegie Hall concert again, which many described as the highlight of the performance.

Jan Vogler dreams of bringing the project with Amanda Gorman to Germany and to the Dresden Music Festival.

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