Auckland Youth Orchestra

Founded in 1948, Auckland Youth Orchestra is the premier regional youth orchestra in New Zealand and was the first youth orchestra established in the Southern Hemisphere, designed to bridge the gap between school orchestras and adult professional groups. The role of AYO is not just to perform concerts but to train future musicians to feed into our national ensembles and orchestras. No other orchestral organisation or institution in New Zealand provides such a comprehensive programme to musicians up to the age of 26. The orchestra regularly presents concerts in centres throughout New Zealand and has toured to Australia, New Caledonia, North America, and Europe.  The orchestra performs up to twelve free concerts annually across the greater Auckland metropolitan area, nationally and abroad.  It attracts audiences of all ages with diverse cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. In 2011 AYO travelled to Europe, being the first ensemble from New Zealand invited to perform at Young Euro Classic. In 2013 AYO toured the length of the South Island with concerts in Dunedin, Gore, Te Anau, Wanaka, Westport, and Nelson.

New Zealand
August 19, 2018 8 pm

Konzerthaus, Berlin

Mitri Sirin

Television Presenter

Mitri Sirin was born in Rheine (North Rhine-Westphalia) in 1971 and holds both German and Turkish citizenship. After graduating from secondary school, he completed his civil service and worked as a DJ in various clubs. In 1993 he moved to Berlin and was part of the founding team of the radio station KISS FM. He worked there as a presenter and music journalist until 1997. In the meantime, he also gathered first experience as a television presenter on the sequel to the popular youth show “elf99” (“Saturday”, Vox) while also producing various television documentaries about the music and nightlife scene in Berlin. He subsequently started working as a presenter and journalist for several public radio stations. Between 2005 and 2015 Mitri Sirin was engaged as a television presenter and reporter for RBB and WDR. Since 2009 Mitri Sirin has been working mainly for the ZDF “Morgenmagazin”, whose main presenter he has been since 2014. Occasionally he helps out on the “heute” shows in Mainz. He often works as a reporter and author for major events, for example the G7 Summit. His family is from Turkey, where it belongs to the Christian minority.

Patron of the Evening
Antun Poljanich

Antun Poljanich was born in Dubrovnik, Croatia. He was educated in piano, music theory and conducting in Ljubljana, Sarajevo, Graz and St. Petersburg, where he worked with several orchestras. After his return to Croatia, Antun Poljanich conducted various European orchestras, e.g. the Slovene Philharmonic Orchestra (Slovenia), the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra (Croatia), the Veneto Philharmonia (Italy), the Cadaqués Symphony Orchestra (Spain) and the Miskolc Symphony Orchestra (Hungary). Since 1996 the conductor has been living in New Zealand, performing with the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra. In 1998 Antun Poljanich became music director of the Auckland Youth Symphony Orchestra, with which he celebrated successful concerts in New Zealand and abroad. As the music director of St. Peter’s College in Auckland, he is responsible for several programmes, including a concert band, a symphony orchestra, chamber music, choral and vocal music. In 2005 he was awarded the St. Peter’s College Scholarship for his contributions to music education in New Zealand. In 2007 Antun Poljanich returned to conduct in his native region again, leading the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra and the Slovene Philharmonic Orchestra.

Noah Rudd

Noah Rudd received his first oboe lessons at the age of nine; he currently studies at the University of Auckland in his third year. He is the principal oboe player of the New Zealand National Youth Orchestra and has worked repeatedly with professional orchestras such as the Dunedin Symphony Orchestra, the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. Since 2014 Noah Rudd has been a member of the Auckland Youth Orchestra.




Presentation of the European Composer Award

Starting at second half of the concert: At the festival Young Euro Classic the Mayor of Berlin presents the European Composer Award to the most deserving candidate. The award is given in recognition of the festival’s best world premiere or German premiere. It is endowed with 5.000 euros. An 11-member audience jury determines the winner. The 2017 European Composer Award was awarded to the Portugese composer Mariana Vieira for her Work “Raíz”, a Concerto for Oboe, Clarinet, Tuba, Harp, Double Bass, Marimba and Orchestra, which had its world premiere in Berlin as part of Young Euro Classic.





“Persephone” (World Premiere)


“Cartoon” Fantasy for Oboe and Orchestra (2017, German Premiere)


“Appalachian Spring” (1945)


“Finlandia” Op. 26 (1900)

7 pm: Pre-Concert Talk with Dieter Rexroth at the Werner-Otto-Saal
Free admission for ticket holders at 6:45 pm


For ambitious youth orchestras, no journey is too far to join the Young Euro Classic roster: from the other end of the globe, the musicians of the Auckland Youth Orchestra travel to Berlin for their concert – and this is their second voyage of this kind, after their debut in 2011. The orchestra members are all students at the University of Auckland, located at the northern end of New Zealand. In keeping with the festival tradition, the Auckland Youth Orchestra performs composers of its homeland, including a brand-new work by Alexander Cowdell  and a German premiere by the most successful composer of New Zealand, Anthony Ritchie. The rest of their programme demonstrates that the musicians from Auckland have a broad musical horizon: the second part of their concert features the famous tone poem Finlandia by the Jean Sibelius and the atmospheric Appalachian Spring by the American composer Aaron Copland. A more entertaining musical journey around the world is hard to imagine!





This concert is recorded by Deutschlandfunk Kultur and broadcasted nationwide – via FM, DAB +, Kabel, online and app. The date of the broadcast is August 21, 2018, 20:03-22:00.

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