Saturday, June 15, 2024

All-encompassing musical world tour

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Contemporary composers use the same 12 notes that are prevalent throughout musical history, but you hear the sound of today. The echo of what is going on in today’s society.’

From miniatures to masterpieces and from Bach to Wantenaar, the Residentie Orkest offers a variety of musicians and repertoires from different cultures and backgrounds in the 2023-2024 season. The diverse range of ingredients promises a colourful programme.

Sven Arne Tepl, General and Artistic Director of the Residentie Orkest, would love to take his audience on a musical exploration of different cultures. Diversity and versatility are therefore at the centre of the programming. ‘We want to surprise and inspire our audiences time and time again, both with a large and innovative repertoire, and with guest soloists and conductors from completely different backgrounds. We are going on a world tour in our own concert hall Amare.’

Top pianists series

New to the line-up of regular series like Symphonic Friday and the Sunday matinee is the Top pianists series. ‘The piano repertoire is vast and comprehensive; there is a lot to choose from. We are home to some great soloists, including Denis Kozhukhin playing Rachmaninov. And former artist in residence Yeol Eum Son returns to The Hague.’ New repertoire has also been considered: Ralph van Raat performs the piano concerto ‘Prophecies of Stone’ by John Luther Adams. ‘Adams does a lot of work with soundscapes and draws inspiration from the nature of Alaska in particular.’

Auerbach Festival

The orchestra will have a party with American-Russian Lera Auerbach. A birthday party, that is. To mark the 50th birthday of this pianist, composer and artist, the Residentie Orkest, the Royal Conservatoire The Hague, the Netherlands Chamber Choir and a number of other ensembles from The Hague will organise a weekend festival around this artistic jack-of-all-trades. ‘Lera is a woman of boundless energy and countless ideas. She writes books, makes beautiful bronze sculptures, goes skydiving, but with us, she plays Mozart’s Piano Concerto No 20 and conducts the Dutch premiere of her Fifth Symphony. An artist with a language that is very much her own. I am looking forward to her arrival.’

Mainstays

Chief conductor Anja Bihlmaier and regular guest conductors Jun Märkl and Richard Egarr are frequent performers at Amare this season. ‘These three regular mainstays leave their very own mark on the orchestra.’ Since opening, we have done some tweaking to the acoustics of the concert hall. ‘The orchestral sound was just a little too bare, especially in the high registers like the first violins. We did something about that and successfully, it has become one of the best halls in the country! Because the sound mixes so beautifully now, the sound image comes very close, as if you were looking directly into the score.’

Artist in residence

Czech violinist and former concertmaster of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra Josef Špaček brings the violin concertos by Dvořák, Beethoven and Berg. ‘Josef is our artist in residence this season. An exceptional musician who has a very diverse repertoire.’ Read the interview with Josef Špaček here [insert deeplink].

Into the neighbourhood

‘With projects like Portiekmuziek, where the orchestra goes into the neighbourhood, we want to connect with all residents of the city. We receive help from housing associations, healthcare institutions and other partners. They identify what people want and we respond to that.’ A great example is the series of concerts at the Juliana church in the Transvaal neighbourhood. The meeting between the musicians and local residents afterwards is sometimes more important here than the concert itself. Contact like that really does something. For both parties.’

Sounds of today

The programme also includes a number of world premieres. These include a concerto for accordion and orchestra by Dutch composer Mathilde Wagenaar and the Triple Concerto written by Finnish composer Sebastian Fagerlund for the Storioni Trio. ‘Contemporary composers use the same 12 notes that are prevalent throughout musical history, but you hear the sound of today. The echo of what is going on in today’s society.’

Tipped by Sven

‘First of all, if you have not yet been to our fantastic concert hall, please come and visit us! For example, on Friday 19 January 2024 for the programme featuring violinist Alina Pogostkina. She will play the First Violin Concerto by Prokofiev. Combined with Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique , this promises to be an exciting evening

Featured quote:

Contemporary composers use the same 12 notes that are prevalent throughout musical history, but you hear the sound of today. The echo of what is going on in today’s society.’

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