[ Reserve a seat ]


Ministry of Education and Culture
Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development
Municipality of Budapest
RTL Klub
Budapest Film
March 19th
Budapest Convention Centre, 7:30 pm
Schönberg: Six songs, op. 8
Berlioz: Symphonie funèbre et triomphale, op. 15
Wagner: Götterdämmerung – final scene
Conductor: Zoltán Kocsis
With: Éva Marton /vocal
Choirmaster: Mátyás Antal
The orchestra has a long history over which time it has established valuable traditions, won dozens of awards for its recordings, and built up an immense repertoire. It was formerly known as the State Symphony Orchestra and it enjoyed a golden era when János Ferencsik was at the helm. In 1997 the orchestra became the National Philharmonic Orchestra and could organise its own concerts. Under the guidance of the new music director, Zoltán Kocsis, the orchestra has already given many compositions their first Hungarian performance. In 2003 they made a major tour of the United States. Since the music director Zoltán Kocsis was bound by an exclusive contract to Philips, it is only now that the reorganised ensemble and Kocsis have been able to issue their first CD which features rarely performed compositions by Debussy and Ravel.

Schönberg composed his Six Songs, op.8 in 1903-1904, while he was still in his tonal period. In one of his writings, looking back on the beginning of his career the composer summed up in points what he had learned from his predecessors, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms and of course Wagner – in the latter case: “1. suitability of themes for expression, and their proper shaping for this purpose, 2. the relationship of notes and chords, 3. the conception of themes and chords as musical manner, and thereby the possibility of contrasting harmonies with dissonance.” The audience can get to know Wagner’s “musical manner” in the final scene of the Götterdämmerung. The final notes of the tetralogy paint a picture of the destruction of the world of the gods. The programme ends with Berlioz’s Symphonie funèbre et triomphale. Berlioz is a very apt choice here because he and Wagner were the two strikingly avant-garde composers of the 19th century.

March 19th
Academy of Music, 7:45 pm
Akira Miyoshi: Kyomon for orchestra and children’s choir – Hungarian première
Schumann: Cello Concerto in A minor, op. 129
Shostakovich: Symphony No. 15
Conductor: Michiyoshi Inoue
With: Truls Mørk / cello, Hungarian Radio Children’s Chorus
(choirmaster: Gabriella Thész)
The orchestra was founded in 1983 by Iván Fischer and Zoltán Kocsis, and was granted standing status by the municipality in 1992. Its international reputation is based on its Hungarian concerts and foreign tours. The orchestra’s recordings have won many prestigious awards. The music director is Iván Fischer.

Truls Mørk
The Norwegian cellist, winner of the Tchaikovsky and numerous other prestigious music competitions, was first taught by his father, then by Frans Helmerson, Heinrich Schiff and Natalia Schakowskaya. He works with the Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the London Philharmonic Orchestra as well as with numerous leading orchestras around the world. Last year he performed the world première of Penderecki’s Concerto for Three Cellos together with Boris Pergamenschikov and Hanna Chang. Mørk is artistic director of the Chamber Music Festival in Stavanger. His regular chamber music partners include Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Yefim Bronfman and the virtuoso Israeli violinist, Gil Shaham. Mørk plays a cello made in the workshop of Domenico Montagnana in 1723. The instrument was purchased for him by the Norwegian Royal Bank.

Michiyoshi Inoue
The Japanese conductor’s career – like so many of his colleagues’ – began in Europe where he won a competition in Milan. He was director of the New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra and with his ensemble gave the opening concert in the Suntory Hall, the giant concert hall in Tokyo. He gives frequent guest performances, not only in Japan but also in Europe and across the American continent, for example, conducting works by Mahler. His name is associated with an exciting performance of Puccini’s Turandot (1999), a co-production between the Bunkamura Theatre and the Edinburgh Festival, which was presented in both places.

Hungarian Radio Children’s Choir
Formed in 1954 under the direction of Valéria Botka and László Csányi. Since 1995 Gabriella Thész has been the artistic director of the children’s choir; from 1997 László Norbert Nemes has been her fellow conductor. The choir’s repertoire now ranges from Gregorian chant, through Renaissance vocal polyphony to contemporary music. Besides works of Kodály and Bartók, special emphasis is placed on presenting works of contemporary Hungarian and European composers. The children are also given regular training. The ensemble frequently participates in Hungarian and European arts festivals and special events. In 1988 they participated in the world première of Stockhausen’s opera, Monday in the Milan Scala. In 1993 they took part in the Geneva Contemporary Music Festival, and in 1996 at the Budapest Spring Festival they sang Penderecki’s St Luke Passion. They are regular participants in the Wien Modern festival of contemporary music. In August 2000 they appeared in the Salzburg Festival, then in September of the same year in Gent, at the Flemish Festival they presented Philip Glass’s Choral Symphony conducted by Dennis Russel Davies.

Gabriella Thész
Graduated in 1973 from the Ferenc Liszt College of Music in Budapest where her teachers were Erzsébet Szőnyi, Zoltán Vásárhelyi and István Párkai. Right from the start her musical activity was oriented towards teaching and choral conducting. She has been a regular and active participant in the training of music teachers abroad and at various universities; including at the American Kodály Institute in 1976 and at the New England Conservatory, Boston, where she taught solmization. She has been a jury member for many Hungarian and foreign choral competitions. Since 1985 she has been teacher and conductor of the Hungarian Radio Children’s Choir.

March 20th
Italian Institute of Culture, 7:30 pm
Zoltán Kocsis and Pannon Philharmonic Orchestra – Pécs
Ravel–Zoltán Kocsis: Le tombeau de Couperin
Bartók: Piano Concerto No. 3
Debussy–Zoltán Kocsis: Images (oubliées), L 87
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloé – suite No. 2
Conductor: Zsolt Hamar
With: Zoltán Kocsis / piano

March 20th
Academy of Music, 7:45 pm
Akira Miyoshi: Kyomon for orchestra and children’s chorus – Hungarian première
Schumann: Cello Concerto
Shostakovich: Symphony No. 15
Conductor: Michiyoshi Inoue
With: Truls Mørk / cello, Hungarian Radio Children’s Chorus
(choirmaster: Gabriella Thész)
March 21st
Budapest Convention Centre, 7:30 pm
Bach: St Matthew Passion, BWV 244
Conductor: Helmuth Rilling
With: Sibylla Rubens, Ingeborg Danz, Marcus Ullmann, James Taylor, Christian Gerhaher, Rudolf Rosen /vocal
Bach-Collegium Stuttgart, Gächinger Kantorei Stuttgart
Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart
The Stuttgart-based centre, often called the Goethe Institute of music, was founded by conductor Helmuth Rilling in 1981. The Bach Academy also organises summer courses and a festival with the focus usually on one other major composer in addition to Bach. In 2003, for example, Mahler and Brahms were highlighted. A number of Hungarian musicians have attended the courses in Stuttgart. The Academy also “travels”: it has held courses in Japan, Poland, the Czech Republic, Russia, Hungary, Spain, Venezuela and Argentina and in 1994 the Internationale Bachakademie Stuttgart was awarded the UNESCO Prize In. 2000 the Institute issued the Complete Edition of Bach works. In May 2003, to mark the 70th birthday of Helmuth Rilling, the founding conductor, a series of major concerts were held. At a charity concert in the Beethoven Hall, the B minor Mass was performed, followed by Penderecki’s Credo. Two Hungarians also took part in this performance: Anna Korondi, an outstanding soprano currently living in Berlin, and István Kovács, a bass who until recently was studying on an Annie Fischer Scholarship. The young son of Ibolya Verebics, a soprano living in Stuttgart, sang in the Arelius children’s choir.
At the Budapest Spring Festival the Academy’s Orchestra and Choir will perform another Bach composition, the Saint Matthew Passion.

March 22nd
Hungarian State Opera House, 7:30 pm
Gershwin: Cuban overture
Copland: Billy the Kid – suite
Copland: Fanfare for the Common Man
Grofé: Grand Canyon – suite
Conductor: Rico Saccani
On this occasion the orchestra, which has been operating continuously for a century and a half, will present an American programme. One of the reasons for the choice is that the ensemble’s artistic director, the conductor Rico Saccani who grew up in an Italian family was born in the United States and so obviously feels a greater affinity to the music of his native land; another reason is that the works of 20th century American composers are rarely heard in Hungarian concert halls. Aaron Copland’s name is relatively well known to the European public. The orchestra will play his suite, Billy the Kid. The music, based on a Wild West story familiar from films, is one of Copland’s three ballet compositions. The average music-lover is probably less familiar with Ferdinand von Grofé. He was born in New York in 1892 and died in Santa Monica in 1972. The Grand Canyon suite in five movements composed in 1931 is generally considered to be his most important and characteristic work. The composition, slightly more than 30 minutes in length, is often coupled with Billy the Kid on concert programmes, for reasons that the audience will discover.

March 24th
Budapest Convention Centre, 7:30 pm
Verdi: Requiem – staged performance
Conductor: Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos
With: Szilvia Rálik, Bernadett Wiedemann, Ľudovít Ludha, István Rácz/ vocal, Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini,
Hungarian National Choir
(choirmaster: Mátyás Antal)
Director: Pierluigi Pier’Alli

March 26th
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
Suter: Le Laudi di San Francesco
Conductor: András Ligeti
With: Andrea Csereklyei, Susanne Schimmack, Attila Fekete / vocal, Hungarian Radio Choir (choirmaster: Kálmán Strausz) and Children’s Choir (choirmaster: Gabriella Thész)
Suter: Le Laudi
Hermann Suter, Swiss organist and conductor, represents the generation of Bartók and Kodály. He was born in 1870 in Aargau, and studied in Basel, and then in Stuttgart and Leipzig (Reinecke). In Zürich he led a choir and later taught at the conservatory becoming an important figure in Swiss music and among Swiss musicians. Later he returned to Basel where he died in 1926. He wrote a symphony, a violin concerto and string quartets, but his most frequently performed work is the op. 25 oratorio: Le Laudi di San Francesco d’Assisi. The work has also been issued on CD, conducted by András Ligeti, director of the MATÁV Hungarian Symphony Orchestra, the mezzo soloist was Vesselina Kasarova. This time a mezzo role is to be sung by Susanne Schimmack who performs mainly in contemporary works in the Monnaie in Brussels. She recently sang the role of the Moon in the Ballata of Luca Francesconi, a student of Berio, in a production directed by Achim Freyer.

March 26th
Italian Institute of Culture, 7:30 pm
Handel: Concerto Grosso in F major, op. 3 No. 4a
Bach: Concerto for Harpsichord
J. H. Roman: Suite in G minor from Golovinmusiken
J. H. Roman: Oboe d’amore Concerto in D major
Handel: Concerto Grosso in D major, op. 6 No. 5
With: Frank de Bruine /oboe d’amore,
Lars Ulrik Mortensen /harpsichord
Concerto Copenhagen
The ensemble specialising in the performance of early music was formed by Danish and Swedish musicians in 1990. The core repertoire of Concerto Copenhagen (known to the Danish public as CoCo) is Baroque and early Classical music. They pay special attention to Nordic composers of the period, such as the Dane C. E. F. Weyse (1774–1842). In co-operation with the Royal Library of Copenhagen they have dusted down and brought to life many previously unknown scores worth discovering. Thanks to the combination of high standard playing and the rarely performed repertoire, the CoCo has become a unique phenomenon in the Danish (and international) music world. Since 1999 the ensemble’s music director has been the harpsichordist Lars Ulrik Mortensen who has given new impetus to the work of the ensemble. In 2002 they staged a performance of Handel’s Julius Caesar in the Royal Theatre, the biggest undertaking so far in the history of the orchestra.
Mortensen studied at the Danish Royal Academy of Music, then he was a student of Trevor Pinnock in London. Between 1988 and 1990 he played in the London Baroque orchestra, then until 1993 in the Collegium Musicum 90. His recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations won the French Diapason d’Or. In 2000 the Royal Theatre invited him to conduct Kunzen’s opera “Holger Danske”. Following the success of the performance Mortensen was appointed permanent conductor of the Royal Theatre and has since conducted many operas, including Mozart’s “Idomeneo”.

March 27th
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
Mozart: Divertimento in D major, K 136
Mozart: Clarinet concerto in A major, K 622
Mozart: Sinfonia concertante in E flat major, K 297/B
Mozart: Divertimento in F major, K 138
Conductor: Tibor Bényi
With: Kálmán Berkes / clarinet, József Kiss / oboe, László Gál / horn, Júlia Gábor / bassoon
Salzburg Festival Orchestra
The Salzburg Festival Orchestra was founded by Tibor Bényi in 2001. The ensemble based on the traditions of the Salzburg Academy of Chamber Music specialises mainly in the music of Mozart and his age. The orchestra works with renowned soloists, but also places great emphasis on introducing talented young musicians. The orchestra is still under the direction of Tibor Bényi. He completed cello studies at the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music and has been living in Salzburg since 1991. At the beginning of his career he twice won first prize in the International Cello Competition (1978, 1984). He regularly serves on the jury for international cello competitions and since 1998 has been holding master courses in Bolzano. He is conductor and soloist of the Salzburg Mozart Chamber Orchestra and artistic director of the Academy of Chamber Music.

March 30th
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
National Philharmonic
Smetana: The Bartered Bride – overture
Mozart: Piano concerto
in B major, K 595
Mahler: Symphony No. 1
Conductor and piano solo: Zoltán Kocsis
National Philharmonics
The Overture of Smetana’s opera, The Bartered Bride is an excellent concert piece. The composer continued the symphonic traditions of Liszt and enriched them the rich sound of his splendidly orchestrated music and the flavours of Czech folk music. Dynamic, cheerful dance melodies in polka rhythm make this piece irresistible.
Like many of his other works, Mahler’s first symphony was inspired by a poem: Jean Paul’s romantic verse, The Titan. The experience of nature that imbued the composer’s whole life also appears in the work. The symphony in four movements composed in 1888 still reflects the style of late Romanticism, especially in the lively finale.
The piano concerto in B flat major in three movements K.595 (the third in this key) is Mozart’s last major concerto for the instrument. He composed it in January 1791 and died at the end of the same year. The date gives us reason to see the works composed in the last year in a different light, as though the shadow of the impending end were cast on them. However, there is no indication of a permanent spiritual crisis in Mozart’s letters although, of course, he had problems. Shortly before he had been invited by both Solomon and O’Reilly to give concerts in London, the receipts promised to be substantial but he could not find the money for the journey. It is true that a certain resignation and introspection can be discovered in the first movement of the piano concerto. It is the numerous minor episodes within the composition in major key that produces this feeling in the listener. The light touch of Mozart the society man is missing from this work, but instead we can observe the composer able to transform childishly simple melodies in a brilliant way into a grandiose structure. The mood of melancholy grows stronger in the central, slow movement, but a kind of romantic joie de vivre returns in the final allegro.

March 30th
Millenáris Teátrum, 7:30 pm
Peter Eötvös: Triangel
Peter Eötvös: Replica – Hungarian première
Michel van der Aa: Here (enclosed) – première
Peter Eötvös: Snatches of a conversation – Hungarian première
Conductor: Peter Eötvös
With: Peter Prommel / percussion, Kim Kashkashian / viola, Marco Blaauw / trumpet, Zoltán Mizsei / vocal
One of the most renowned interpreters of 20th century music. He began his career as a composer and conductor as an assistant to Stockhausen and Boulez. From 1978 to 1991 he was artistic director of the Ensemble InterContemporain in Paris, from 1985 to 1988 he was principal guest conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and from 1992 to 1995 he was the First Guest Conductor of the Budapest Festival Orchestra. Currently he is the Chief Conductor of the Dutch Radio Chamber Orchestra, Guest Conductor for contemporary music of the Budapest National Philharmonics and professor of Cologne’s Hochschule für Musik. In 1991 he founded the International Eötvös Institute for young conductors and composers. In recognition of his work in 1988 he was made an “Officier de l’ordre des arts et des lettres” by the French Minister of Culture. In 1997 in Budapest he received the Bartók–Pásztory Prize. He was elected member of the Akademie der Künste in Berlin in 1997, the Széchenyi Academy of Literature and Arts in Budapest in 1997, and the Sächsische Akademie der Künste in Dresden in 1999. In 2000 he was awarded the anniversary prize of the Christoph und Stephan Kaske Stiftung. In May 2001 he received the newly established Gundel Prize in Budapest for his stage sound drama As I Crossed a Bridge of Dreams. His compositions are played throughout the world. In 1998 his opera Three Sisters won the “Grand prix de la critique 1997/98 – Prix Claude-Rostand” (Paris), the “Victoires de la Musique Classique et du Jazz 1999” (Paris) and the “Prix Caecilia” (Brussels). In 2001 he was awarded the Hungarian Classics Prize established by Gramofon magazine. His works are published by Editio Musica Budapest, Salabert in Paris, Ricordi in Munich and Schott Music Mainz and his recordings have been issued by a BMC, DGG, ECM, EMI, Gramophon AB BIS, and Kairos Wien.
In honour of the 60th birthday of Peter Eötvös
(Organised jointly with the Millenáris Kht., with the support of Gaudeamus and MuziekGroep Nederland)

March 31st
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
Liszt: Mazeppa
Khachaturian: Violin concerto in d-minor
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4
Conductor: Hobart Earle
With: Maxim Fedotov / violin
The old Odessa, one of the pearls of the Black Sea was a multinational city where Armenians, Greeks, Jews and Germans all lived together and the culture was highly varied. Many famous artists were born in Odessa, including the great pianist Sviatoslav Richter. The city’s philharmonic orchestra was established in 1937 and was regarded throughout the Soviet period as one of the important orchestras, beside the ensembles of Moscow and St Petersburg. It was directed by such outstanding conductors as Yuri Temirkanov, Kurt Sanderling, Arvid and Mariss Jansons. Since the independence of Ukraine, the Odessa Philharmonic Orchestra (OPA) has been regarded as a national ensemble. It has developed rapidly in recent years, particularly since it has been headed by the young American conductor, Hobart Earle. Writing in The Independent, a critic stressed the orchestra’s refined, polished sound characteristic of the Viennese and Berlin orchestral school.
They have given guest performances in London, Cologne, Vienna, Bonn, Madrid, Chicago, Washington, and the Carnegie Hall in New York – always appearing in the main concert halls.
The young conductor, born to American parents in Venezuela, was a student of Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa at Tanglewood. Hobart Earle also studied conducting in Vienna and is a graduate of Princeton University. His repertoire is especially strong in composers of the second Viennese school (Mahler, Berg) and their contemporaries (Bruckner, Richard Strauss) as well as 20th century English and American composers (Elgar, Copland, Bernstein).

April 1st
Italian Institute of Culture, 7:30 pm
Clemencic Consort
Jacopone da Todi: Stabat Mater
Pergolesi: Stabat Mater
René Clemencic: Stabat Mater – Hungarian première
René Clemencic and his ensemble, the Clemencic Consort have already been guests at the Budapest Spring Festival. The ensemble’s founder and director, the virtuoso baroque flautist, was born in Vienna. His father was a public notary and the family travelled around the Central European region, from the Istrian peninsula to Poland. René Clemencic not only studied music but also philosophy and musicology. Together with the Clemencic Consort, both as performing artist and researcher, he deals with the music of the Middle Ages, Renaissance and Baroque music, but he is also well acquainted with contemporary music and the avant-garde related arts. His musicological writings cover the same themes and he often holds master courses in these fields in Europe and the United States.
(With the support of the Austrian Culture Forum Budapest)

April 1st
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet - fantasy overture
Mozart: The Magic Flute - Sarastro's aria in E major
Verdi: Don Carlos - King Philip's aria
R. Strauss: Ein Heldenleben - symphonic poem
Conductor: Tamás Vásáry
With: László Polgár /vocal, Attila Falvay / violin
The orchestra was formed in 1943 and its first conductor was the then general music director of Hungarian Radio, Ernő Dohnányi. The orchestra is one of the finest in Hungary and highly respected all over Europe. The orchestra has worked with many distinguished musicians over the years and has toured four continents. They regularly perform and record the entire spectrum of the symphonic and oratorio repertoire, from the baroque to the present. Since 1993 the orchestra’s principal conductor and general music director has been Tamás Vásáry.
Tamás Vásáry
Born in Debrecen (1933), he earned a piano diploma from the Ferenc Liszt Academy of Music where he became Zoltán Kodály’s assistant. After winning big international prizes he was forced to emigrate in 1956; he travelled around the world as a celebrated pianist and made highly successful recordings. In the 1970s he began to conduct and this career blossomed. Since 1993 he has been the general music director and principal conductor of the Budapest Symphony Orchestra.

April 1st
Marble Hall of the Hungarian Radio, 7:30 pm
Respighi: Antiche arie e danze
Beethoven: Romances in G major and F major
R. Strauss: Metamorphosen
With: Péter Csaba / violin
The Romanian-born Hungarian violinist and conductor, Péter Csaba has won numerous international violin competitions as well as second prize in the Paganini Competition. As a musician he has literally travelled around the world: he has given concerts with great success in 60 countries. He founded the Kuhmo Virtuozi chamber orchestra of Finland and is artistic director of the Lappland Festival, the Swedish Musica Vitae chamber orchestra, and the Besançon Symphony Orchestra. He has held many master courses around the world, is director of the orchestra department of the Lyon Conservatoire Superior and artistic director of the Santander Music Festival. In 2002 the Swedish Academy elected him as a regular member. His recordings have appeared on the Caprice, Ondine, Bis and Hungaroton Classic labels and many contemporary composers have dedicated works to him. For years he participated in the summer Castle Concerts in Gödöllő.

April 1st
Uránia National Cinema Palace, 7:30 pm
Mozart: Divertimento in F-dur, KV 138
Joachim Kühn: Grenoble-Konzert
Joachim Kühn: Salinas – mar y sal
Haydn: Abschiedssymphonie, Hob 1:46
Dirigent: Helmut Branny
Joachim Kühn (piano) and the Dresden Soloists
The ensemble was founded in 1994 by a few musicians of the Staatskapelle so that they could play rarely heard baroque, classical and romantic compositions for their own pleasure. They soon became sought after participants at leading German festivals; they have been invited by the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Cologne Philharmonia, and have made successful tours to Florence, Rome, Milan and even Japan. Their programme in Budapest will be of great interest as the soloist will be Joachim Kühn, the jazz pianist and also saxophonist. The musician was born amidst the sound of weapons in Leipzig in 1944. He trained to be a classical concert pianist but at the age of 16 his elder brother, the clarinettist Rolf, enticed him into the world of jazz and he very soon won big successes in this genre. He took first prize in a series of competitions and was invited to international gatherings. At the age of twenty he formed his first trio and then worked with such great international jazz figures as the bass player Coltrane, Jimmy Garrison, and in Paris with Michel Portal, Slide Hampton and Phil Woods. He then sought American partners: he opened a fresh new trend with Billy Cobham and Joe Henderson. He formed his new trio in Paris with Jean-François Jenny-Clark and Daniel Humair. He has composed for Carolyn Carson, the renowned American choreographer working with the Netherlands Dance Theatre. Since 1996 he has been playing in a duo with Ornette Coleman. Classical and contemporary music are closely intertwined in his work.
(With support of Deutsche Telekom / T-Com.)

April 2nd
Italian Institute of Culture, 7:30 pm
Mendelssohn: Hebrides overture, op. 26
Dvořák: Romance in F minor
Sarasate: Carmen Fantasy
Dvořák: 4 Legends, op. 59
Bruch: Violin concerto No. 1 in G minor, op. 26
Conductor: David Stern
With: Sarah Chang / violin
The English Chamber Orchestra (ECO) was formed in 1960. It is one of the world’s most celebrated chamber ensembles, its members work full-time for the ensemble which is supported by the English Chamber Orchestra and Music Society under the patronage of the Prince of Wales. Over the decades it has been associated with Benjamin Britten, Sir Colin Davis, Daniel Barenboim, Raymond Leppard, the virtuoso Japanese pianist Mitsuko Uchida, a student of Alfred Brendel, Itzhak Perlman and Pinchas Zukerman. In Budapest the ensemble will be conducted by Daniel Stern. Stern was born in New York, graduated in piano and conducting from Yale University then continued his studies at the Juillard School. He has participated in many international competitions and festivals in the United States and South America. He has been successful in festivals in Europe too (e.g. Aix-en-Provence) and in opera houses conducting works by Britten, Mozart, Bizet, and Richard Strauss. On a number of occasions he has conducted the Orchestre de Paris. He made his debut in Great Britain together with violinist Sarah Chang in 1999, and has since returned a number of times.
Born in Philadelphia to Korean parents, Sarah Chang is still only in her early twenties. She began as a child prodigy: she was only 9 when she made her first recording of virtuoso violin pieces by Sarasate, Paganini, Elgar and Prokofiev. At the Juillard School she was a student of the best string teacher, Dorothy Delay. She has been invited by the world’s best orchestras, from the Concertgebouw Orchestra to the Vienna Philharmonics and the big American orchestras. Her concerts have been conducted by Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Sir Simon Rattle, James Levine, Michael Tilson Thomas – in short, the leading conductors of our time. Major festivals from Peking to London vie to have her appear in their programmes. Her repertoire is exceptionally wide and includes the Sibelius and Goldmark violin concertos, as well as compositions by Mendelssohn, Richard Strauss and Dvořak. In recent years her attention has turned to chamber music, as her Budapest concert also indicates.

April 2nd
Academy of Music, 7:45 pm
Beethoven: Piano concertos Nos. 2 (B major), 3 (C minor) and 4 (G major)
Conductor and piano solo: András Schiff

April 3rd
Academy of Music, 7:45 pm
Beethoven: Piano concertos Nos. 2 (B major), 3 (C minor) and 4 (G major)
Conductor and piano solo: András Schiff
April 4th
HAS Ceremonial Hall, Roosevelt tér, 7:30 pm
Zelenka: Gesù al Calvario, ZWV 62
Conductor: Paul Dombrecht
With: Maria Cristina Kiehr, Greta De Reyghere, Andrew Watts, Pascal Bertin, Steve Dugardin / vocal, Namur Chamber Choir
Il Fondamento
Il Fondamento is an ensemble established for the authentic performance of early music. They rediscover and perform forgotten works and rarities, by Zelenka, Fasch, Fux, Telemann and of course Handel and Bach. Il Fondamento is directed by Paul Dombrecht renowned as a virtuoso of the modern oboe who has become one of the pioneers of authentic performance. Dombrecht is also the director of the Octophorus early music wind consort. As the ensemble developed, their repertoire expanded and now they perform not only early music but also Mozart. In co-operation with other Flemish musical ensembles they perform monumental oratorios by Handel and Bach. Although Zelenka spent most of his life not in his native land but in Dresden, he was the most influential master of Czech Baroque music. He composed mainly church works; he wrote twenty masses, including a Requiem and a Magnificat, and a number of Lamentations.
The soloist for Gesù al Calvario, Greta De Reyghere, first studied singing under her mother. Although Greta did not prepare for a career as a singer, she studied languages and it was only as a young adult that she realised she would like to sing professionally. She graduated from the Brussels Royal Conservatoire and then took master courses under Alfred Deller, Erik Werba and Gérard Sousjay. Her repertoire also includes 20th century contemporary works.

April 4th
Academy of Music, 7:30 pm
Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester
Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde – Der Abschied
Mahler: Symphony No. 9
Conductor: Claudio Abbado
With: Anna Larsson / vocal
Claudio Abbado
One of the world’s elite conductors, the music world celebrated his 70th birthday this year. His international career took off in 1958 when he won the Tanglewood conducting competition (Koussewitzky prize). In 1960 he made his debut in the Milan Scala. In 1963 he won the Mitropoulos Competition in New York and as a consequence became assistant to Leonard Bernstein at the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. At the invitation of Karajan he made his debut at the Salzburg Festival in 1965. From 1968 he was principal conductor at the Milan Scala, a post he held until 1986.
Since then he has worked with the world’s leading ensembles (London Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Vienna Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Berlin Philharmonic, etc.). He has conducted in the major opera houses, working with such directors as Ponelle, Giorgio Strehler, Otto Schenk, Lubimov, Zeffirelli, Andrej Tarkovskij.

Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra
The Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra (Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester – GMJO) was founded in 1986 in Vienna at the initiative of Claudio Abbado. This was the first ensemble in which young musicians from Eastern and Western Europe played together. In 1992 the GMJO was opened to musicians up to the age of 26 from anywhere in Europe, at present it is the only pan-European youth orchestra. The GMJO musicians do not receive a fee but the orchestra covers all their costs – travel, meals, accommodation – on tours. They tour twice a year, at Easter and in the summer.
The orchestra’s repertoire ranges from classical to contemporary music.
The GMJO is a welcome guest at the major festivals (Salzburg Spring and Summer Festival, London Proms, Berliner Festwochen, Edinburgh Festival, Schleswig Holstein Music Festival, Lucerne Festival), and in the leading concert halls of Europe (Wiener Konzerthausgesellschaft, Cologne Philharmonie, Concertgebouw Amsterdam).
Besides the founding conductor, the orchestra has worked with Marc Albrecht, Serge Baudo, Pierre Boulez, Semyon Bychkov, Riccardo Chailly, Peter Eötvös, Iván Fischer, Daniele Gatti, Michael Gielen, Bernard Haitink, Manfred Honeck, Mariss Jansons, Neeme Järvi, James Judd, Sir Neville Marriner, Kent Nagano, Václav Neumann, Seiji Ozawa and Franz Welser-Möst. It has accompanied such outstanding soloists as Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Thomas Allen, Martha Argerich, Yuri Bashmet, Brigitte Fassbaender, Leon Fleisher, Natalia Gutman, Thomas Hampson, Hans Hotter, Dmitrij Hvorostovskij, Soile Isokoski, Evgenij Kissin, Marjana Lipovsek, Radu Lupu, Christa Ludwig, Yo-Yo Ma, Waltraud Meier, Viktoria Mullova, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Jessye Norman, Anne Sofie von Otter, Maria Joao Pires, Lucia Popp, András Schiff, Christian Tetzlaff, Dawn Upshaw, Maxim Vengerov and Frank-Peter Zimmermann.
In recent years the orchestra has made several highly successful tours, in 1996 with Schönberg’s Gurre-lieder conducted by Abbado, in summer 2001 with Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 conducted by Franz Welser-Möst. Their first opera production was conducted by Pierre Boulez and directed by Pina Bausch (Bartók: Bluebeard’s Castle). In 1999 they made a tour through North and South America, in collaboration with the Tanglewood Music Center of the Boston Symphony Orchestra conducted by Claudio Abbado and Seiji Ozawa. In 2002 they performed Wagner’s Parsifal at the Edinburgh Festival with great success. The production was directed by Peter Stein. In spring 2003 they toured Japan with Pierre Boulez.
Former members of GMJO are found today in the great European orchestras, the Vienna Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra, and with opera house orchestras in Zürich, Paris, Barcelona, Helsinki, Rome and Budapest. Others are continuing their careers in renowned chamber orchestras such as Kremerata Baltica, the Camerata Salzburg or the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. The Mahler Chamber Orchestra founded in 1996/97 is made up of former members of the GMJO and has since earned recognition in the international concert world. The GMJO has also made a number of successful recordings released on CDs with such conductors as Abbado, Peter Eötvös, James Judd and Stefan Anton Reck.
Anna Larsson
The young Swedish alto graduated from the Stockholm Opera Academy. She made her debut in 1995. Her career quickly took off and she is especially sought after as an oratorio singer. She has sung Mahler’s “Des Knaben Wunderhorn” on a number of occasions with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Okku Kamu) (in Sweden and England), as well as Brahms’s Alto Rhapsody with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra (conducted by Paavo Berglund). She has worked with Claudio Abbado in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 (Berlin Philharmonic) and in 1998 she sang the solo of the Brahms Alto Rhapsody. In 1996 she recorded orchestral transcriptions by Max Reger of Schubert and Brahms songs with the Danish Radio Sinfonietta.

Claudio Abbado and Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester

| Budapest Spring Festival | Budapest Autumn Festival | Summer on Chain Bridge |
| top of page | home | tickets | about us | email |