Under the baton of distinguished conductor Christoph Eschenbach and with his fruitful collaboration with baritone Matthias Goerne, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra will stage a concert in October. The repertoire will include Brahms' "Tragic Overture", Schubert's "Symphony No.8, 'Unfinished'" and Mahler's 11 songs from "Des Knaben Wunderhorn". This is a not-to-be-missed event for all music lovers.
Over its 160 years of history, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra has undoubtedly been one of the finest orchestras in the world. Since its founding by Otto Nicolai in 1842, the orchestra has fascinated prominent composers and conductors, as well as audiences, all over the world. It has a special reputation based on its historical association with some of the greatest composers, including Brahms, Richard Strauss and Mahler. Conductor Hans Knappertsbusch even described the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra as "incomparable". The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra has made it its mission to carry the humanitarian message of music into the daily life and consciousness of its listeners. In 2005, it was named Goodwill Ambassador of the World Health Organization.
Christoph Eschenbach is a distinguished guest conductor who has worked with the finest orchestras and opera houses throughout the world. Since he was appointed as Music Director of the National Symphony Orchestra in the US as well as Music Director of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, he has been playing a key role in planning future seasons, international festivals and special projects for these two prestigious institutions. Eschenbach's honours include Commandeur dans l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and the Commander's Cross of the German Order of Merit for outstanding achievements as pianist and conductor. Gramophone wrote that "his approach is fundamentally objective, confident, sharp-edged, and analytical, and yet there is no mistaking the underlying emotional thrust."
Matthias Goerne studied with Hans-Joachim Beyer in Leipzig, with Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, and has received worldwide praise for his warm, fluid baritone and his profound interpretations. Highly respected as a lieder singer, Goerne is a frequent guest at renowned festivals and prestigious venues like London's Wigmore Hall. Well-known pianists such as Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Eschenbach are among his musical partners. Goerne also appears with the world's foremost orchestras and conductors including the New York Philharmonic and the Berlin Philharmonic. The Chicago Sun-Times praised Goerne as "perhaps the greatest lieder singer of today."
Presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department and sponsored by Mr Albert Hung, Mr Wilfred Ng and Mr Raymond Leung, the concert by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra will be staged at 8pm on October 9 (Sunday) at the Concert Hall, Hong Kong Cultural Centre. Tickets priced from $300 to $2,000 will be available from August 11 (Thursday) at all URBTIX outlets, on the Internet and by credit card telephone booking. Half-price tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 or above, people with disabilities and their minders, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients (limited tickets for full-time students and CSSA recipients available on a first-come, first-served basis).
For programme enquiries, call 2268 7321; for ticketing enquiries, call 2734 9009. For credit card telephone bookings, call 2111 5999. Internet bookings are available at www.urbtix.hk. Visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/CE/CulturalService/Programme/en/music/00000274.html for more information on the programme.
There will be an outdoor live relay of the concert at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza. Before the concert begins, Dr Oliver Chou, a music columnist, will conduct a live pre-concert talk in Cantonese. Admission is free for both activities.
Ends/Tuesday, August 9, 2011