»New Departures« – that’s the theme of our new season: with a new Principal Conductor, a new era begins. »The Bamberg Symphony embodies orchestral culture in its fullest sense«, says Jakub Hrůša. »Even before I had the opportunity to conduct this jewel among European orchestras, I admired it enormously.« And our orchestral family has also gained another member, a second Honorary Conductor: Christoph Eschenbach, who has been inspiring us for more than 50 years and has conducted over 150 concerts with our Orchestra.
»New Departures« are also what we want to convey with works which, when written, dared to do something new. No question, we must start afresh with Gustav Mahler, the composer who aimed to depict the whole world in his symphonies and who brought music into the modern age. But »New Departures« can also be journeys – works in which a composer addressed setting off for summer pastures, for a new home, or into the unknown. Be it Gershwin’s »An American in Paris« or the symphonies which Mozart wrote on his journeys across Europe – musicians were always voyagers between worlds.
We also want to try the occasional experiment, leaving behind well-worn concert rituals: whether by interweaving two works, segueing straight from one piece to the next, or even wondering if the concert might actually start before the first note...? Jakub Hrůša opens his first appearance as Principal Conductor with Varese’s sound composition »Tuning Up«. Even the famous four and half minutes of music with no music, John Cage’s »4'33"«, will be performed in Bamberg, along of course with masterpieces by Beethoven, Brahms and Bruckner.
Last but not least we remember our Bohemian roots: this Orchestra’s musicians were repeatedly forced to start afresh, originally from Prague’s Estates Theatre to the New German Opera, then to the Sudetenland and back again to Prague, and finally in 1945-46 to Bamberg. Our players brought their »Bohemian sound« with them and managed to preserve it. And since then they have launched themselves from here over the whole world. We look forward to welcoming our Portrait Artist Lisa Batiashvili, to touring east and west with both our Honorary Conductors, and to seeing new faces on Bamberg’s rostrum. Join us on a journey into the new season – a rich offering for any music-lover. After all, as Jakub Hrůša has put it, »with the Bamberg Symphony, every musical detail, however small, can become a miracle, and every concert can change those who hear it.«
Marcus Rudolf Axt
Please find our season brochure here.