Long Night of the Cello on ARTE Concert (June 2022)

Starting tonight, the Long Night of the Cello from this year’s Dresden Music Festival will be available across Europe on ARTE Concert. Divided into three parts, Nicolas Altstaedt, Santiago Cañón-Valencia, Pablo Ferrández, Zlatomir Fung, David Geringas, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, ShekuKanneh-Mason, Anastasia Kobekina present, Harriet Krijgh, Mischa Maisky, Ivan Monighetti, Edgar Moreau, Johannes Moser, Daniel Müller-Schott, Miklós Perényi, Kian Soltani, Jan Vogler, and Pieter Wispelwey showcase the multifaceted nature of the instrument.

The streams as well as the program of the individual parts can be found here:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

New recording Pop Songs with Jan Vogler, Omer Meir Wellber and the BBC Philharmonic (May 2022)

Cellist Jan Vogler explores hits of the past four centuries together with Omer Meir Wellber and the BBC Philharmonic on the new CD Pop Songs which will be released by Sony on 6 May. The idea of a recording to tell the story of the “pop song” came to Jan Vogler

during the pandemic, when every day – deprived of the daily live encounter with great music – we were all singing and whistling to ourselves catchy tunes from the last four centuries. Realizing the project with the creative Omer Meir Wellber and the fabulous BBC Philharmonic was an intense reminder of the intensity and radiance these ‘hits’ have retained over decades and centuries. The cello – with its vocal range from baritone to coloratura soprano – is a versatile narrator of this thrilling story.

The new arrangements for cello and orchestra range from Monteverdi to Michael Jackson, from Mozart to the Beatles. The second force behind the recording is conductor Omer Meir Wellber, with whom Jan Vogler had long discussions about the right arrangement and approach to each piece. The two sought the specific expression for each song and asked themselves what actually made the numbers so popular.

Further insights can be found in the booklet.

New CD release – Omer Meir Wellber, Jacob Reuven, Sinfonietta Leipzig (May 2022)

With the CD release The Mandolin Seasons, Omer Meir Wellber and mandolinist Jacob Reuven fulfill a long-held wish.

Jacob Reuven and Omer Meir Wellber grew up together in the Israeli desert city of Be’er Sheva – Reuven with Iraqi Jewish roots and Wellber coming from a western Jewish community. United since childhood by an irrepressible joie de vivre, they have a shared passion for music and, more specifically, for the instruments of their homeland, learned as schoolboys: mandolin and accordion… (more in the booklet)

And it is with these instruments that the two musicians together with the Sinfonietta Leipzig (musicians of the Gewandhausorchester) completely rediscover the seasons of Vivaldi and Piazzolla in The Mandolin Seasons.

With Omer Meir Wellber in the role of conductor and continuo player on harpsichord and accordion – meaning he is improvising in both “Seasons” – and Jacob Reuven’s desire to reshape the works for mandolin, both explore and create a new exotic sound world with it.

The recording will be released by Hyperion on 6 May.

Jacob Reuven– mandolin Omer Meir Wellber – accordion, harpsichord, conductor Sinfonietta Leipzig Vivaldi: Violin Concerto in F minor “Winter” RV297 Piazzolla: Invierno porteño (No. 2, “Winter for the people of Buenos Aires” from Las cuatro estaciones porteñas) Vivaldi: Violin concerto in E major “Spring” RV269 Piazzolla: Primavera porteña (No. 3, “Springtime for the people of Buenos Aires“) Vivaldi: Violin Concerto in G minor “Summer” RV315 Piazzolla: Verano porteño (No. 4, “Summer for the people of Buenos Aires“) Vivaldi: Violin concerto in F major “Autumn” RV293 Piazzolla: Otoño porteño (No. 1, “Autumn for the people of Buenos Aires“)

Tannhäuser premiere under the musical direction of Kent Nagano in Hamburg (April 2022)

A new production of Wagner’s Tannhäuser under the musical direction of Kent Nagano will celebrate its premiere at the Hamburg State Opera this Sunday, 24 April. The production by Kornél Mundruczó with Klaus Florian Vogt in the title role will be broadcast live on NDR Kultur.

Please find more information here.

TV Tipp – Die Stimme der Vögel: Der Komponist und Ornithologe Olivier Messiaen with, among others, Kent Nagano on Monday, 25 April at 00:05 on ARTE and afterwards in the media library: https://www.arte.tv/de/videos/104480-000-A/die-stimme-der-voegel/

Stiftung Semperoper awards the “Rudi Häussler Prize” to Omer Meir Wellber (April 2022)

On 15 April, Omer Meir Wellber will be awarded the Rudi Häussler Prize in the course of the performance of Don Giovanni. Omer Meir Wellber was already awarded the prize in 2020, but due to the pandemic the award ceremony could not take place until this year.

With this prize, the Stiftung Semperoper honours artistic personalities who have contributed to the reputation of the Semperoper Dresden. The main aim is to promote artists with “extraordinary ambitions and talents” and Omer Meir Wellber “manages like no other to turn conducting into special experiences for the audience”, according to the founder of the foundation, Senator h. c. Rudi Häussler.

Please find more information here.

Puccini’s Madama Butterfly at the Semperoper Dresden (April 2022)

“I can’t change much in this score because there is a strong energy and everything is so precise, for example in the dynamics,” Omer Meir Wellber says of the Puccini composition. The new production of Madama Butterfly, directed by Amon Miyamoto, will premiere at the Dresden Semperoper on 6 April 2022. Further information can be found here.

David Philip Hefti’s String Quartet „con fuoco“ – played by the Amaryllis Quartett (März 2022)

In May 2021 the Amaryllis Quartet played David Philip Hefti’s String Quartet No. 4 “con fuoco” at the Putbus Festival in the Putbus Theater. More information about the work can be found here: hefti.net/de/werke/

Gustav Frielinghaus – violin, Lena Sandoz – violin, Mareike Hefti – viola, Yves Sandoz – cello

Kent Nagano at the lit.COLOGNE (March 2022)

This coming Sunday, 20 March, Kent Nagano will present his book “10 lessons of my Life – Was wirklich zählt” (Berlin Verlag, 2021) at the lit.COLOGNE.
In conversation with Claudia Dichter, Nagano will discuss important events in his life that influenced him beyond his artistic path, including encounters with Leonard Bernstein and the pop musician Björk.

Please find more information about the event here and about the book here.

Kent Nagano conducts A Quiet Place with Opéra national de Paris (March 2022)

On 9 March 2022, Kent Nagano will conduct the premiere of Leonard Bernstein’s A Quiet Place at the Opéra national de Paris in the Palais Garnier in a new production by Krzysztof Warlikowski. This marks Nagano’s return to the Opéra national de Paris, where he has previously conducted Wozzeck, Elektra, Dialogues des carmélites, Cardillac and Werther.

9 March Paris, Palais Garnier
Bernstein: A Quiet Place                         Premiere
Other performances: 10, 13, 16, 18, 21, 23, 24, 26, 29, 30 March
Krzysztof Warlikowski – staging

In 2018, a recording of A Quiet Place with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal conducted by Nagano was previously released on the Decca Classics label. Please find more information here.