It is only ten years old, but many experts have declared it one of the best orchestras in Romania – possibly even the best. Young Euro Classic visitors already had a chance to convince themselves of the outstanding qualities of the National Youth Orchestra of Romania in 2012 and 2014. These are due mainly to the brilliant work of the experienced conductor Cristian Mandeal, who conveys not only technical know-how, but also the enthusiasm that great music requires to the young musicians aged 18 to 28. The orchestra’s high level of playing is also demonstrated by several invitations to perform at the renowned George Enescu Festival in Bucharest in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017. Furthermore, the National Youth Orchestra of Romania has already appeared in Rome, Paris, Brussels, Vienna and Istanbul, as well as the festivals in Ravello and Aix-en-Provence. While the first CD production of the National Youth Orchestra of Romania was dedicated to Romanian composers, the second one, entitled Trans-Europa Express, featured works ranging from Grieg to Fauré, Tchaikovsky and Khachaturian.
General Director, Deutschlandradio
Stefan Raue has been General Director of Deutschlandradio since September 1, 2017, a position he took over from Dr. Willi Steul. Raue was born in Wuppertal in 1958 and studied history, literary studies and philosophy in Freiburg and Bielefeld. His career as a journalist began in 1986 as an intern at the “Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung” and at the WDR radio station, where he subsequently worked from 1987 to 1990 as a reporter in the State Studio in Düsseldorf. In 1990 he was appointed political editor, managing editor and chief editor for current affairs at RIAS-TV; in 1992 director of the department of current affairs and news at DW-TV. From 1992 to 1995 he held various leading positions at the ZDF; from 2011 to 2017 he was editor-in-chief for all three MDR media. Stefan Raue is married and has two children.
The Romanian conductor Cristian Mandeal, born in 1946, studied at the Music Academy in Bucharest before completing his training with Herbert von Karajan in Berlin and with Sergiu Celibidache in Munich. From 1987 to 2009, he was the Chief Conductor and General Music Director of the Bucharest Philharmonic, guiding its rise to an orchestra of international rank. Apart from Romanian orchestras, he has conducted renowned orchestras throughout Europe and was Principal Guest Conductor of the Hallé Orchestra in Manchester until 2009 and the Copenhagen Philharmonic until 2013. In 2001 and 2003, Cristian Mandeal was the Artistic Director of the George Enescu International Festival. He has conducted more than 60 world premieres of Romanian and other composers and has recorded George Enescu’s complete symphonic works for CD. During recent years, the 72-year-old has been active in building up the National Romanian Youth Orchestra, with which he last appeared at Young Euro Classic in 2012 and 2014, and the National Symphony Orchestra of Romania.
The young Romanian pianist Mihai Ritivoiu was educated at the music academy of his hometown of Bucharest and then moved on to the Guildhall School of Music in London. He has also participated in master classes of renowned piano pedagogues and pianists such as Dmitri Bashkirov, Richard Goode and Emanuel Ax. In 2010 Ritivoiu won the National Competition Dinu Lipatti in Bucharest; in 2015 he was invited to perform a special concert commemorating the 65th anniversary of his great antecedent’s death. As a winner of the International George Enescu Piano Competition, he has recorded Sergei Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Romanian Radio Orchestra. In addition to solo recitals and performances with orchestra, Ritivoiu dedicates much of his time to chamber music. He now lives in London, where he has performed at the Barbican Centre, at Wigmore Hall and at the church of St. Martin-in-the-Fields.
“Levante” (World Premiere)
Piano Concerto No. 1 in C-Major Op. 15 (1800)
Symphony No. 11 (“The Year 1905”) in G-Minor Op. 103 (1956-57)
7 pm: Pre-Concert Talk with Dieter Rexroth at the Werner-Otto-Saal
Free admission for ticket holders at 6:45 pm
It is fair to call this one the shooting star among European youth orchestras: within a short while, the National Youth Orchestra of Romania has developed into one of the best, perhaps even the best orchestra of its homeland. The Young Euro Classic audience witnessed the quality of the young Romanians already in 2012 and 2014. Now they return to Berlin under their chief conductor Cristian Mandeal, with a programme that is all about contrasts. After the world premiere of a new work by Dan Dediu, the timeless classic Ludwig van Beethoven is represented by his Piano Concerto No. 1; the Russian Dmitri Shostakovich, on the other hand, unfolds an hour-long musical panorama of the first Russian Revolution of 1905 in his Symphony No. 11, which is simultaneously full of ambiguous innuendo about the Soviet Union in 1957. Shostakovich’s Eleventh Symphony is rarely heard in regular concert seasons – all the more reason to experience it with the outstanding Romanian Youth Orchestra!