Young Euro Classic
July 24 – August 10
2020 Konzerthaus Berlin

Even after the grand 20th birthday party last year, Young Euro Classic is not resting on its laurels. It is incredible how many youth orchestras keep springing up all over the world – all eager to present themselves to the Festival audience at Berlin’s venerable Konzerthaus. From Uzbekistan to Uruguay, we have intriguing newcomers to introduce this summer. One of them is the Greek Youth Symphony Orchestra, which opens Young Euro Classic on July 24 with a meaningful programme entitled “Myth – Memory – Future”: a hopeful new orchestra from Southern Europe making its festival debut.

Youth orchestras hit a nerve of our times – this is demonstrated not only by the National Youth Orchestra of Uzbekistan, which is supported by the highest authorities at home and has long become a musical ambassador of its country. A similar case is the Russian National Youth Symphony Orchestra, also founded very recently, which unites the best music students from the entire country. Outstanding musical quality in an all-Russian programme is guaranteed here. The National Youth Orchestra of Uruguay offers a wonderful South American counterpoint, sharing the stage with the great bandoneon player Héctor Ulises Passarella during its Young Euro Classic debut. Another ambitious young orchestra comes from the Cuban capital of Havana, bringing its Latin temperament to a programme featuring several Mozart works.

The great composers of the late romantic era, beloved of many young orchestras, are not lacking: Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov, Stravinsky and Strauss. Not to forget the Dane Carl Nielsen and his Fourth Symphony “The Inextinguishable”, which Orkester Norden, a Nordic-Baltic ensemble, brings to Berlin. Gustav Mahler, in turn, will be in the best hands with the International Orchestra Institute Attergau, since that orchestra is taught and mentored by members of the venerable Vienna Philharmonic.

Anyone whom the great Beethoven cycle at Young Euro Classic 2019 left longing for even more music by the composer with the great anniversary this year will not be disappointed: the National Youth Orchestra of Germany performs the Ninth Symphony, supported by the World Youth Choir during the final chorale, the “Ode to Joy”. The conductor of this performance is particularly intriguing: celebrated the world over, the composer Tan Dun also contributes a musical reflection on the Ninth which opens the concert evening. One of the audience favourites at Young Euro Classic, the Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra, offers an all-Beethoven evening, combining the “Pastoral” Symphony with the rarely-heard Triple Concerto.