Göteborgs Konserthus University of Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra

Experience the young orchestra musicians from the master’s programme at the Academy of Music and Drama.

Concert length: 2 h incl. intermission Scene: Stora salen
150 SEK Student 100 SEK Senior 100 SEK Children tom 12 år 0 SEK

Meet the University of Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra which consists of musicians from the master’s programme in symphonic orchestra performance at the Academy of Music and Drama.

The programme is run in collaboration with the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and the Göteborg Opera, and we are delighted to welcome the orchestra to the Concert Hall, contucetd by Jurjen Hempe.


Gotland-born Elfrida Andrée was not only a pioneer as a female cathedral organist and composer. In her early career, she also became Sweden's first female telegraph operator. The driving force she nurtured can also be seen in her rich and versatile production consisting of songs, masses, piano quintet, organ preludes, two symphonies and of course a concert overture of the more festive kind. Many works have been given new life in recent years, such as the opera Fritiofs saga which was staged in 2019 by the Gothenburg Opera and Symphony No. 1 which has been recorded by the Gothenburg Symphony. Elfrida Andrée was a central figure in Swedish musical life for many years and organized hundreds of folk concerts in Gothenburg. On a couple of occasions she led the Gothenburg Orkesterförening, the predecessor of the Gothenburg Symphony. She conducted the concert overture in D major herself at a packed concert in Gothenburg Cathedral in the spring of 1878. JENNY SVENSSON

The Shrovetide Fair Petrushka's Room The Moor's Room Towards evening: The Moor and Death of Petrushka Petrushka, which is an example of Stravinsky's feeling for Russian folklore, actually comes from Stravinsky's first years as a composer. The young law student, who took private lessons in orchestration, had caught the eye of ballet impresario Diaghilev after some orchestral pieces performed back home in Russia. Djagilev was looking for something musically new and interesting. Paris critics liked the Russian ballet's inventive decor and choreography, but found the music boring. After Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, no critics wrote that anymore. But this was several years ahead, first Diaghilev lured Stravinsky to France. The ballet The Firebird was Stravinsky's definitive breakthrough and perhaps the work that made him truly believe in his chosen profession. Ballet number two, Petrushka, became as popular as the Firebird. Petrushka is about three dolls that appear in Russian markets and the music is as full of color and whimsy as you can imagine such a market could be. The amazing dancer Nijinsky played the lead role at the Théâtre du Châtelet on June 13, 1911. Over 30 years later, in 1947, Stravinsky made a new version in the United States with some adaptations, most likely because he did not have the copyright to his earlier version and had to rewrite it to generate income when the work was performed. I'm probably not alone in thinking that the music for Petrushka is among the most beautiful things Stravinsky wrote. Time and time again, the music evokes smiles. Here there are carousels, love, positivity, romance, slapstick. When you close your eyes, both smells and images come to mind. KATARINA A KARLSSON

Intermission 25 min

Brahms's third symphony boasts one of the most beautiful romantic themes ever written: the allegretto in C minor, which with its easy three-beat chords resonates with most discerning people. In modern times, it became known as the theme of the Ingrid Bergman film Do you like Brahms... (1961) after Françoise Sagan's short story Aimez-vous Brahms? as it is more affectionately called in the original. Brahms's third symphony was inspired by nature, he created best with the greenery in the knots. He had inherited the strategy of Beethoven and other predecessors: work as a pianist, musician and teacher from fall to spring, compose in the summer. For Brahms it became a way of life. Mahler followed the same model. Originally, Brahms had intended to spend the summer in Bad Ischl, but plans changed when he found seclusion and inspiration in the German city of Wiesbaden, an old health resort, where he arrived after a journey along the Rhine. It is clear that Brahms wrote the symphony under happy circumstances this summer of 1883. Was he in love? Always in Clara Schumann. After playing through the symphony in the version for two pianos, she wrote to Brahms: "All the movements seem to form a unity, like a heartbeat." The symphony is a salute to her and a tribute to her late husband Robert Schumann, Brahms' mentor and friend. The very introduction to the symphony - which opens up like a wonderful view when one reaches a high altitude after a long hike among pines and firs - is not a little reminiscent of the introduction to Schumann's "Rhine Symphony" (the third). The mentioned allegretto also has similarities with the romance in Schumann's fourth symphony, which Brahms published in the original version at his own expense after the composer's death. Brahms also makes an ironic comment on the ongoing feud between Brahms followers (traditionalists) and Wagnerians (new German school) - three notes in horn and oboe at the end of the first movement. Do you recognize it? That's right, Tristan and Isolde. Wagner had died in February of that year… STEFAN NÄVERMYR

Saturday 29 April 2023: The event ends at approx. 17.00


The core of the orchestra is students of the two-year international master's program in symphonic orchestra playing at the University of Gothenburg University. The training is unique in its kind and is conducted in collaboration with the Gothenburg Symphony and the Gothenburg Opera. The orchestra projects also include students from the bachelor's program in classical music, a three-year program where the students focuses on chamber music playing and individual development on their instrument. Sometimes students from other music colleges are invited to participate and complement the orchestra. The artistic director of the University of Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra is Henrik Schaefer. Each academic year, the University of Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra performs eight orchestral productions with a total of around 15 public concerts. Internationally well-known conductors and soloists are engaged for these. Recently, Anja Bihlmaier, Eva Ollikainen, ShaoChia Lü, Olaf Henzold, Patrik Ringborg, Tobias Ringborg, Michel Tabachnik and Steven Sloane have been guests of the orchestra. Among the soloists are pianists Roland Pöntinen and Christian Zacharias, violinists Malin Broman and Antje Weithaas, trumpeter Tine Thing Helseth and singer Kristina Hansson. The orchestra also collaborates every year with the opera education at the University of Stage and Music. The University of Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra is an ambassador for the University of Gothenburg, supporting the concert and tour activities.

Jurjen Hempel made his highly acclaimed debut in 1997 with Rotterdam Philharmonic. Recent engagements have been with Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Basel Symphony Orchestra, BBC SO London, BBC SSO Glasgow, BBC NOW Cardiff, Deutsches Symphony Orchestra Berlin. He also has been twice guest conductor with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. After a successful production of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail, the Opéra de Toulon appointed him as Music Director starting 2018. He studied conducting with David Porcelijn and Kenneth Montgomery at the Utrecht Conservatorium. On invitation of Seiji Ozawa he studied as a Conducting Fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center where he worked with Bernard Haitink and Lorin Maazel. As finalist and prize-winner at the Sibelius Conducting Competition he received many invitations from Finnish Orchestras.

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