Göteborgs Konserthus The Irresistible Cello

Event has already taken place. A romantic masterpiece followed by stormy love, with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, conductor John Wilson and cellist Leonard Elschenbroich.

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

Event has already taken place

Edward Elgar’s Cello Concerto is a romantic masterpiece. Expressive music charged with lyrical melodic richness, elegance and longing passion. His countryman William Walton’s Symphony No. 1 provides a strong contrast with its emotional volcanic eruption.

While Elgar brings out the cello’s unique ability to convey both melancholic reflection and sincere desire, Walton’s symphony is a musical lava flow of suffering. The music is a powerful reflection of Walton’s stormy love affair with the Baroness Imma von Doernberg, who left him for the Hungarian physician, musician and art philosopher Tibor Csató in the early 1930s. The orchestra is led by the British conductor John Wilson, and the soloist is the acclaimed German cellist Leonard Elschenbroich.


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!


Elgar Cello Concerto 30 min

Intermission 25 min

Walton Symphony No. 1 43 min


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.

John Wilson is in demand at the highest level across the globe, regularly guest conducting the world's finest orchestras: in recent seasons these have included the London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw, Budapest Festival, Oslo Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and Sydney Symphony orchestras, and productions at English National Opera and Glyndebourne Summer Festival. For many years Wilson appeared widely across the UK and abroad with the John Wilson Orchestra. In 2018 he relaunched the Sinfonia of London. Their much-anticipated BBC Proms debut in 2021 was described by The Guardian as "truly outstanding" and they are now much in demand across the UK, returning to the BBC Proms, Birmingham Symphony Hall and London's Barbican Centre among other venues this season. Wilson has a large and varied discography and his recordings with the Sinfonia of London have received exceptional acclaim and several awards including, for three successive years, the BBC Music Magazine Award in the Orchestral category for the Korngold Symphony in F sharp (2020), Respighi Roman Trilogy (2021) and Dutilleux Le Loup (2022) recordings. The Observer described the Respighi recording as "Massive, audacious and vividly played" and The Times declared it one of the three "truly outstanding accounts of this trilogy" of all time, after those by Toscanini (1949) and Muti (1984). Born in Gateshead, Wilson studied composition and conducting at the Royal College of Music where, in 2011, he was made a Fellow. In March 2019, John Wilson was awarded the prestigious ISM Distinguished Musician Award for his services to music and in 2021 was appointed Henry Wood Chair of Conducting at the Royal Academy of Music.

Cellist Leonard Elschenbroich has performed as a soloist with the world's leading orchestras. He has been described by the New York Times as a musician of great technical skill, intellectual curiosity and expressive depth. Elschenbroich has appeared with many prominent conductors worldwide. Among them can be mentioned Christoph Eschenbach, Charles Dutoit, Manfred Honeck, Dmitri Kitajenko, Juanjo Mena, and Yan Pascal Tortelier with orchestras such as the London Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Konzerthaus Orchester Berlin and Sveriges Radio Symphony Orchestra. Leonard Elschenbroich is also a committed chamber musician and regularly performs in duo recitals with Alexei Grynyuk and with the Benedetti-Elschenbroich-Grynyuk Trio which has toured Europe, USA, South America and Australia. He is an advocate of contemporary music and played the world premiere of Mark Simpson's Cello Concerto (2018) written especially for him on behalf of the BBC. He has also performed concertos by Gilbert Amy, MarkAnthony Turnage, Peteris Vasks, Magnus Lindberg, Colin Matthews and Brian Elias and has commissioned new works by composers such as Turnage, Luca Lombardi, Arlene Sierra and Suzanne Farrin. He plays a cello made by Matteo Goffriller (Venice, 1693).

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