The National Youth Orchestra of Germany (BJO) is characterised by three elements: outstanding musical quality, infectious enthusiasm and not least its great interest in innovative programmes. The Young Euro Classic audience has had frequent opportunities to enjoy these qualities, as the orchestra has been an indispensable regular guest at the festival – thus when it accompanied the silent movie Nathan der Weise in 2010 and with many other unforgettable performances. The young musicians, aged 14 to 19 and many of them first-prize winners of the competition “Jugend musiziert”, have to audition for their membership in the orchestra. In addition to the great classical and romantic orchestra works, contemporary works are an essential part of the programmes. Founded in 1969 by the German Music Council, the BJO has long been one of Germany’s most important cultural ambassadors, as its most recent concert tours to South Africa (2010), Venezuela and Ecuador (2011), China (2012) and Tunesia (2014) demonstrated. In 2013 Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic became the BJO’s official patrons.
Dr. Ralf Kleindiek (SPD) is known for his poised and unpretentious disposition. Since his appointment as Undersecretary of State at the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth by Manuela Schwesig in 2014, he has represented the ministry on numerous podiums and platforms, winning general sympathy. Born in Hameln, Kleindiek studied law in Gießen and subsequently worked at the Federal Ministry of the Interior, in various positions at the Federal Ministry of Justice, and as a State Councilor at the Hamburg Authority for Justice and Equal Opportunities. His departure was unfortunate for Hamburg, but practical for him: the Undersecretary of State lives in Brandenburg with his family, so his commute became significantly shorter. In an interview with the Foundation for German-Russian Youth Exchange last year, he said: “Youth politics must be international; they depend on the mutual experience of young people in the various countries.” That sounds to us like the perfect attitude for a patron at Young Euro Classic…
The conductor Patrick Lange is a familiar face not only at Young Euro Classic, but to Berlin audiences in general. In 2008 the native of Nuremberg became First Kapellmeister at the Komische Oper, and in 2010 he was appointed interim Chief Conductor there. During his tenure there, he conducted three major premieres: Wagner’s Meistersinger, Dvořák’s Rusalka and Mozart’s Idomeneo. At the same time, his international career took off, which has taken Lange to many great opera houses since. Apart from his regular appearances at the Vienna State Opera, the 34-year-old has conducted in Munich and Hamburg, at London’s Royal Covent Garden Opera House and at the Sydney Opera. Concert invitations have taken him to the WDR Symphony Orchestra, the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields. Lange began his musical education with the Regensburger Domspatzen boys’ choir. Later, he studied at the music academies in Würzburg and Zurich and was mentored especially by Claudio Abbado.
With his well-thought-out concert programmes and CD recordings, the 36-year-old pianist Herbert Schuch has made a name for himself as one of the most interesting musicians of his generation. Most recently, he won acclaim for his six-part Schubert-Janáček cycle; his latest CD combines works by Bach and Liszt with Ravel, Messiaen and Tristan Murail. In his concert repertoire, he focuses on Mozart, but also performs the piano concerti for left hand by Ravel and Korngold as well as Victor Ullmann’s piano concerto. Born in Temesvár in Romania in 1979, Schuch moved to Germany with his family in 1988. In 2005 he came to broad attention by winning three major competitions: the Beethoven Competition in Vienna, the Casagrande Competition in Italy and the London International Piano Competition. Ever since, he has appeared with many major orchestras and conductors such as Pierre Boulez, Lothar Zagrosek, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Jonathan Nott and Michael Sanderling. Schuch is also an active proponent of the organisation “Rhapsody in School”, founded by his fellow pianist Lars Vogt, which promotes the teaching of classical music in schools.
Symphony No. 1 in D-Major Op. 25 «Symphony Classique» (1917)
«Mountain» (World Premiere)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 3 (1803)
«Appalachian Spring» (Original Version, 1944)
Symphony No. 4 in A-Major Op. 90 «Italian» (1833)
7 pm: Pre-concert Lecture in the Werner-Otto-Saal
Free for ticket holders (admission at 6:45 pm)
Moderation: Martina Taubenberger
In cooperation with the Körber Foundation.
From Europe to America and Asia and back again: the musical journey of the German National Youth Orchestra, whose performances have been a Young Euro Classic highlight throughout the festival’s existence, spans three continents. This year, German classical and romantic repertoire takes centre stage: Beethoven’s mighty Piano Concerto No. 3 in C-Minor and Felix Mendelssohn’s 4th Symphony, also known as the “Italian”, which has been likened to the sparkling of champagne. They are flanked by two 20th-century works: Sergey Prokofjev’s Haydn-inspired Symphonie classique and the famous orchestra work Appalachian Spring, Aaron Copland’s atmospheric musical portrait of his North American homeland written in 1944. Finally, there is also the German premiere of a brand-new work by the composer Zulan, originally from Mongolia.