The Philharmonia Orchestra and Salonen perform landmark Beethoven cycle at Beethovenfest Bonn
Published: 10 September 2012
Category: Tours & Projects
In October 2012, Esa Pekka Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra will undertake a landmark Beethoven cycle as part of this year’s Beethovenfest Bonn. This major symphonic cycle will be taking place over five successive days in the concluding week of the festival.
The project was conceived by Intermusica in close collaboration with Beethovenfest Bonn, Esa Pekka Salonen and the Philharmonia Orchestra.
The symbol of the Olympic Games, being held this year in London, inspired Maestro Salonen to inject an Olympic dimension to the project and the programming reflects this. Five contemporary works, one from each of the five continents, will be juxtaposed with Beethoven’s symphonies in each concert. Works being showcased include: Unsuk Chin Violin Concerto performed by Viviane Hagner, which will be framed with Beethoven Symphonies 1 and 7; Australian composer and Intermusica artist Brett Dean’s Testament, which will be performed between Symphonies 2 and 3; Steven Stucky’s Radical Light, paired with Symphonies 8 and 5; and a new work by Joseph Phibbs entitled Rivers to the Sea.
The closing concert of the festival will see the orchestra being joined by Martin Grubinger, who will perform Ghanaia II a joint collaborative composition between Grubinger and Matthias Schmitt. Composed in 1996, Ghanaia II is intended by its composers as an “homage to the rhythms of Ghana and to the wisdom of those men and women who for centuries have handed down this music to their descendants”. The concert will conclude with the Philharmonia performing Beethoven Symphony No.9 joined by soloists including Giselle Allen, Anne Marie Owens, Andrew Kennedy and James Rutherford. Choruses from NDR and WDR Rundfunkchor Köln will join the orchestra for this grand finale to the cycle.