The Giya Kancheli Tbilisi Youth Orchestra is a very young orchestra: the TYO was only founded in 2019 by the Georgian composer Mikheil Mdinaradze and the conductor Mirian Khukhunaishvili and named in honour of the Georgian composer Giya Kancheli. Its goal is to organize intensive rehearsal periods with professional teachers and soloists, increasing its participants’ knowledge of the classical European music tradition, but also devoting special attention to contemporary music. Every year, the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra gives 15-20 concerts; thus, it organized the festival “Mozartomania” in November 2019 and performed three concerts with Georgian soloists in this context. Furthermore, the British Council in Georgia enabled the orchestra to give a joint performance with the British composer and performer Anna Meredith and her band as part of her project Varmints.
The Georgian conductor Mirian Khukhunaishvili began his musical training at the Tbilisi State Conservatory, supported by several scholarships from the President of Georgia and the Ministry of Culture. Starting in 2012, Khukhunaishvili continued his studies at the Cracow Music Academy in Poland, graduating in 2020. The conductor has appeared with all the major ensembles of his country, including the National Philharmonic of Georgia, the Tbilisi State Symphony Orchestra and the orchestra of the Tbilisi Opera. He has also been invited to conduct in Amsterdam, Vienna, Paris, Copenhagen and by the Konzerthaus Orchestra Berlin, where he made his debut in October 2022. During the Conductor’s Academy of the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Khukhunaishvili won the Paavo Järvi Fellowship and the audience prize in November 2022. The Georgian conductor lives in Iceland today, where he teaches conducting at the Academy of the Arts and directs the University Chorus. In 2019, Mirian Khukhunaishvili co-founded the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra.
Describing her as the “breath of the future”, the jury chairman Andrzej Wituski praised Veriko Tchumburidze when she won the International Henrik Wieniawski Competition in Póznan in 2016 at the age of only 20. Raised in a Georgian family in Adana in Southern Turkey, Veriko Tchumburidze received her first music lessons at the conservatory in Mersin. In 2010, she began studying with Dora Schwarzenberg in Vienna, then in 2015 with Ana Chumachenko in Munich, where she completed her master’s degree in 2022. Today the violinist is studying chamber music there, but also giving a multitude of concerts, most recently at the Beethoven Easter Festival, the Gstaad Menuhin Festival, the Olympus Musical Festival and the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. There, she performed with Leif Ove Andsnes, Lisa Batiashvili, Sol Gabetta, the Quatuor Ebène, Maxim Vengerov and Tabea Zimmermann. Together with the Brandenburg State Orchestra Frankfurt under Howard Griffiths, Veriko Tchumburidze recorded John Williams’ score for Schindler’s List. She plays a 1756 Guadagnini violin on loan to her from the Stiftung Deutsches Musikleben.
Kordz, whose civilian name is Alexandre Kordzaia, loves crossing the boundaries between composing and performing. He has won special acclaim for his live performances with such diverse artists as the Philharmonic Orchestra of Georgia, the violist Georgi Zagareli and the rapper DRO. Kordz has contributed significantly to the vibrant club scene in Georgia’s capital of Tbilisi during the past five years. His performances include piano, keyboards and synthesizers, helping him deliver extremely danceable and atmospheric performances. Invitations have taken Kordz to Germany and the Netherlands several times, where he has performed with the Asko Schoenberg Ensemble, Slagwerk Den Haag, the Residentie Orkest Den Haag, the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and the Dortmund Philharmonic.
Mika Mdinaradze pursues a multi-faceted career as a composer, arranger and producer. Together with the conductor Mirian Khukhunaishvili, he founded the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra in 2019. His oeuvre includes music of different genres; thus, Mdinaradze has written not only symphonic works and songs, but also scores for film and theatre, television and advertising. Recently, the Georgian composer has devoted himself entirely to “serious” music: thus, he wrote a Kirye Eleison for soprano and orchestra, which was given its world premiere in November 2022 by the Konzerthaus Orchestra Berlin under Christoph Eschenbach’s baton. In July 2022 his composition 145 Christ for flute and orchestra was premiered in Tbilisi, commemorating the children killed in Ukraine, and performed by the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra with flutist Stathis Karapanos.
“The Hebrides” Overture Op. 26 (1829-1830)
“Blue Horses” (World Premiere) 🏆
“Chiaroscuro” for Solo Violin and Chamber Orchestra (2010)
3 Pieces for Piano & Orchestra (World Premiere) 🏆
Symphony No. 3 in E-flat-major Op. 55 “Eroica” (1803-1804)
About the concert
The Tbilisi Youth Orchestra and its conductor Mirian Khukhunaishvili love contrasts. For their concert at Young Euro Classic, they follow festival tradition and bring intriguing works from their homeland, including two premieres: one is a composition by Mika Mdinaradze, whose Kirye Eleison was recently given its world premiere by the Konzerthaus Orchestra Berlin, and the other is a work by Kordz, a pianist and performer who mixes all kinds of musical genres brilliantly. The third Georgian element is the Violin Concerto Chiaroscuro by the famous Georgian master composer Giya Kancheli, performed by Veriko Tchumburidze, a Georgian violinist who studied in Vienna and Munich. The classical and romantic framework is provided by two highlights of Central European symphonic music: Mendelssohn’s concert overture The Hebrides, inspired by a trip to Scotland the composer undertook in his youth, and the impressive Third Symphony by Ludwig van Beethoven, the Eroica. A truly promising programme for an orchestra that was only founded in 2019!