Göteborgs Konserthus Mahler with Rouvali

Season opening filled with wonderful string sounds, trembling nerves and loving playfulness with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali and cellist Claes Gunnarsson.

Concert length: 2 h incl. intermission Scene: Stora salen
370-530 SEK Student 185-265 SEK

Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra opens the season with wonderful string sounds, trembling nerves and loving playfulness together with chief conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali, the conductor comet from Finland!

Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 vibrates to a tragic mix of dread and harmony. Trembling nerves, but also the adagietto’s wonderful string section that floats between a state of dreaming and the waking world. We can only imagine how the audience reacted when Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 premiered in Cologne in 1904 – a crazy trumpet that plays a bygone fanfare, followed by the explosion of the orchestra and then the emergence of a sorrowful melody. What an atmosphere! The entire symphony is characterised by a tragic mix of dread and harmony. The renowned adagietto features a string section that floats between a state of dreaming and the waking world – tranquil, soaring and motionless at the same time.

Just a few decades earlier, a completely different sound filled the concert halls of Europe and Russia in a completely different era. Tchaikovsky’s Variations on a Rococo Theme represents noble classicism in a romantic costume, here reflected in all its loving playfulness by the Gothenburg Symphony’s solo cellist Claes Gunnarsson. Tchaikovsky composed his works at a time when his right to live honestly and love the one he wanted was so questioned that he tried to end his own life. Music, and this work in particular, was Tchaikovsky’s way of dealing with an inner struggle, and a reality that limited his freedom.

Listen

Introduction to the concert

Take a seat in the Great Hall one hour before the concert begins and learn more about the music you will soon experience! A musician from the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra gives you the stories behind the music, knowledge of the composers and own reflections on what it is like to play the classical pieces. The introduction last for about 30 minutes, it is free and free seating in the hall. Warm welcome!

Programme

Tchaikovsky Rococo Variations 18 min

Intermission 25 min

Mahler Symphony No. 5 1 h 12 min

Participants

The Gothenburg Symphony, called "one of the world's most formidable orchestras" by the Guardian, has toured the USA, Europe, Japan and the Far East and performed at major music centres and festivals throughout the world. Chief conductor is Santtu-Matias Rouvali who started his tenure in 2017. Barbara Hannigan and Christoph Eschenbach are principal guest conductors since 2019. Already at the orchestra's very first years, the great Swedish composer Wilhelm Stenhammar was appointed principal conductor, contributing strongly to the Nordic profile of the orchestra by inviting his colleagues Carl Nielsen and Jean Sibelius to conduct their own works. Subsequent holders of the post include Sergiu Comissiona, Sixten Ehrling and Charles Dutoit. During Neeme Järvi's tenure (1982-2004), the orchestra became a major international force. In 1997 it was appointed the National Orchestra of Sweden. During his celebrated tenure as music director (2007-2012), Gustavo Dudamel took the Orchestra to major music centres and festivals in Europe, making acclaimed appearances at BBC Proms and Vienna Musikverein. The list of prominent guest conductors has included Wilhelm Furtwängler, Pierre Monteux, Herbert von Karajan, Myung-Whun Chung, Herbert Blomstedt and Sir Simon Rattle. The orchestra also runs extensive concert projects for children, and regularly releases digital live concerts free on gsoplay.se. The orchestra has been involved in many prestigious recording projects, the latest one the complete Sibelius Symphonies with Santtu-Matias Rouvali for Alpha Classics. Earlier, the orchestra has issued over 100 recordings on BIS, Deutsche Grammophon, Chandos, Farao Classics and several other labels. The Gothenburg Symphony is owned by the Region Västra Götaland.

Hailed by The Guardian as "the latest sit-up-and-listen talent to emerge from the great Finnish conducting tradition," the 2018/19 season will see Santtu-Matias Rouvali continuing his positions as Chief Conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony and Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonia Orchestra, alongside his longstanding Chief Conductor-ship with the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra close to his home in Finland. Rouvali has regular relationships with several orchestras across Europe, including the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Bamberger Symphoniker and the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin. As well as making his debut with the Münchner Philharmoniker this season, he also returns to North America for concerts with the Minnesota Orchestra and Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Following a very successful Nordic tour with Hélène Grimaud last season, the Gothenburg Symphony is back on the road in February 2019 for a tour hitting major centres in Germany and Austria with pianist Alice Sara Ott, and percussionist Martin Grubinger who premieres a new percussion concert by Daníel Bjarnason. Rouvali looks forward to other ambitious touring projects with his orchestras in the future, including appearances in North America and Japan. In addition to the extensive tour, Rouvali's season in Gothenburg opens with Strauss' Alpine Symphony accompanied by Víkingur Ólafsson Mozart Piano Concerto No.24, and he looks forward to collaborations with Janine Jansen, Patricia Kopatchinskaja and Baiba Skride throughout the rest of the season. As another cornerstone to his tenure in Gothenburg, he is adding his mark to the Orchestra's impressive recording legacy. In partnership with Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra and violinist Baiba Skride, a recording featuring concertos from Bernstein, Korngold and Rozsa is released in autumn 2018.This continues his great collaboration with Baiba Skride following their hugely successful recording of Nielsen and Sibelius' violin concertos with the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra in summer 2015. Rouvali has been Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra since 2013. Highlights of the tenure so far include a Sibelius symphony cycle in autumn 2015, and the Orchestra's first tour to Japan in spring 2017 where they were accompanied by an exhibition of original Moomin drawings by Tove Jansson to mark the opening of the new museum at the Tampere Hall. He opens the 2018/19 season with a Beethoven programme with pianist Javier Perianes. Alongside an extremely busy symphonic conducting career, as Chief Conductor in Tampere he has conducted Verdi's La forza del destino and most recently world premiere of Olli Kortekangas's My Brother's Keeper (Veljeni vartija) with Tampere Opera in spring 2018.

Claes Gunnarsson cello

Questions? Contact the ticket office
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