Slovak Youth Orchestra

© Peter Drezik

The national youth orchestra of Slovakia was founded at the initiative of the Slovak Music Centre. Its goal is to support the education of the young generation of professional Slovak musicians and improve the quality of orchestral music in Slovakia. 60 young musicians aged 16 to 28, mostly students at Slovakia’s conservatories and music academies, meet for regular working phases with renowned conductors and soloists. The Slovak Youth Orchestra has participated in many Slovak festivals, for example Allegretto Žilina, the Music Summer in Nové Zámky, the Music Festival Piešťany, the Musical Spring Festival in Trenčín and the Cultural Summer in Banská Bystrica. In November 2018 the young musicians were invited to the project “Orchestra Residencies Program” led by the American violinist Midori. The Slovak Youth Orchestra makes its debut at the festival Young Euro Classic this year.

July 28, 2019 20:00

Konzerthaus, Berlin

Lea Heinrich

© Christina Körte

Music Education

Lea Philippa Heinrich studied music pedagogy (piano and jazz saxophone) as well as Spanish / Latin American Studies at the Berlin University of the Arts, Berlin’s Free University and at the Universidad de Granada in Spain. She was a fellow of the Second Masterclass on Music Education of the Körber Foundation and holds a certificate in Culture and Media Management from the Hamburg Academy of Music and Theatre. Since 2012 she has managed the music education programme of the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, coordinating activities such as the Symphonic Mob, among others.
From 2015 to 2019 she was a guest docent and member of the academic staff for music education, management for musicians and interdisciplinary professionalization at the Hanns Eisler Music Academy in Berlin. She also taught at the Detmold Music Academy.
Lea Philippa Heinrich has worked on the artistic, conceptual and organizational aspects of various music projects, e.g. for the Berlin Philharmonic’s education department, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg and the Umculo Cape Festival in South Africa. In 2015 she chaired the audience jury for the European Composer Award of the Young Euro Classic festival.
She has moderated concerts at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Music Festival, the Kulturförderpunkt Berlin and as a music curator for the sculpture composition series at the Bode Museum in Berlin.

Patron of the Evening

Benjamin Bayl

Born in Sydney in 1978, the conductor Benjamin Bayl studied in London and celebrated early career triumphs in the field of 18th– and early 19th-century music. He led ensembles such as the Hanover Band and the Gabrieli Consort, Concerto Copenhagen and the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin. In 2006 Bayl became an assistant conductor at the Budapest Festival Orchestra, working with Iván Fischer. He has also worked with John Eliot Gardiner, Ivor Bolton and Richard Hickcox and assisted Yannick Nézet-Séguin with his recording cycle of the great Mozart operas. Apart from the grand oratorios by Bach, Handel, Mozart and Haydn, Bayl commands a broad opera repertoire, ranging from Monteverdi, Lully and Purcell via Gluck and Mozart to contemporary works. Together with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, he made his Berlin debut in 2018. Future commitments include appearances in Malaysia and Hong Kong, a Beethoven cycle with the Hanover Band and Mozart’s Così fan tutte at the Budapest Opera.


Miki Skuta

© Dibelli

The Slovak pianist Miki Skuta, born in 1960, has been among the most renowned artists of his country for many decades. His repertoire goes far beyond classical fare, encompassing jazz and pop as well – from Rachmaninov, Ravel and Messiaen to Steve Reich and Chick Corea. Skuta has been invited to perform at many international festivals, e.g. Bach Unwrapped (London), The Piano (Budapest), Pianomania (Belgium), the Warsaw Autumn Festival, the Kunstfest Weimar and the Zurich Jazz Festival. Among his classical CD productions, 16 Beethoven Sonatas and the Diabelli Variations stand out. His recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations received highest accolades from the BBC Music Magazine, garnering the pianist invitations to solo recitals in London and Paris. Since 1996 he has also formed a successful piano duo with his wife Nora, specializing mainly in 20th-century music. He has also made a name for himself as a composer whose works have been performed in many Western European countries.


Martin Adámek

© Mathilde Lauridon

At the age of only 22, the Slovak clarinettist Martin Adámek can already look back upon an impressive career. During his studies in Bratislava and Brno, he was a member of the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra and the European Union Youth Orchestra. He also won first prizes at the clarinet competition “Città di Carlino” (2013) and at the International Leoš Janáček Competition (2014). In 2016 Adámek was appointed principal clarinettist of the Ensemble Intercontemporain in Paris, with which he also performed at the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin. In 2017 he played with the Lucerne Festival Academy under the baton of Matthias Pintscher, giving the Swiss premiere of the Clarinet Concerto by Michel van der Aa. The Slovak was also a member in the Alma Mahler Chamber Orchestra, which specializes in symphonic arrangements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In addition, he has founded a trio with the pianist Zuzana Biščáková and the soprano Nao Higano, focusing mainly on contemporary works and commissioning new works as well.



"Le Boeuf sur le Toit" Op. 58 (1920)


Concerto for Piano (2003, German Premiere)


"Clarinettino" (1994)


Symphony No. 2 D Major Op. 36 (1801/02)

7 pm: Pre-Concert Talk with Anne Kussmaul at the Werner-Otto-Saal
Free admission with concert ticket


A small country with a long musical tradition: the Slovak Youth Orchestra makes its debut at Young Euro Classic at the Konzerthaus Berlin. Even when Slovakia’s capital was still known to German speakers as Pressburg, it was proud of its thriving musical life. To this day, opera and concert life are very much alive; names such as Lucia Popp and Edita Gruberová are familiar to any opera fan. The Slovak Youth Orchestra brings two contemporary works by Slovak composers to Berlin – featuring the well-established pianist Miki Skuta and the young and exceptional clarinettist Martin Adámek. Our Slovak guests have invented a promising framework for these works: in the beginning, we hear the ballet suite Le boeuf sur le toit by Darius Milhaud, famous for its Brazilian inflections. And the crowning finale is the Symphony No. 2 in D Major by Ludwig van Beethoven.


The concert will be recorded by kulturradio vom rbb (USW 92.4 and Cable 95.35); it will be broadcast as part of the ARD Radio Festival on September 6, 2019 .

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