Filharmonie Brno presents its 67th season, which will begin on 18 September with the concert “No Wars!”. This will be the fifth season under the leadership of Chief Conductor and Artistic Director Dennis Russell Davies. Photo Credit: Brno Filharmonie

Brno, 20 May (BD) – Filharmonie Brno presents its 67th season, with inspiration from early music, new projects and celebration of the 150th anniversary of Besední dům. The new season will include world and Czech premieres, and foreign and domestic stars, as well as major international tours to the USA, South Korea and the UK. In addition, there will be new recordings released by Filharmonie Brno on their own label.

This season will focus on inspiration from early music and the discovery of its forgotten gems. Projects of the chief conductor and the performance of major works of the 20th and 21st centuries will be woven through the concert program; concerts have been conceived as a synthesis of tradition and innovation. 

Dennis Russell Davies, the Artistic Director that has led this Orchestra for five years, declared that he wanted to play Czech music and classic musical works by the major composers, while also featuring works by contemporary composers with whom he has a friendship. “Listeners will hear Janáček, Martinů  and Dvořák,” Davies said. “They will also hear Bruckner, Wagner and Brahms. This year we are including Berio and Henze, who have greatly influenced my life and career. I was fortunate to work closely with both of them in the 1960s when I was studying in New York and then in the 1970s when I was developing as a young conductor.” Davies recalled that Henze invited him to join the Stuttgart Opera, which turned him into a passionate European. “Like Berio, he influenced me greatly both humanly and artistically. That is why I am extremely happy to be able to offer their music to the great Brno audience,” he added.

Early music is a distinctive line of the new season. “We want to discover its forgotten significant composers, as we did, for example, with Rejcha’s ‘Lenore’. But we are even more interested in younger composers who were inspired by this music,” said Vítězslav Mikeš, dramaturge of Filharmonie Brno. In particular, Besední dům will present concerts composed in this way, for example evenings entitled “In the Old Style”, “Messengers of the Old Times”, and “Schubert meets Berio”. In one evening Salieri, Henze, Malecki and Beethoven will meet, in another Haydn will be combined with Mansurjan and Silvestrov. “Among the Czech composers we will mention Vranický, Vaňhal and Ditters von Dittersdorf, who are connected with the Czech tradition,” Mikeš said.

In the main subscription series, the audience can expect notable concerts by the chief conductor with symphonies by Brahms, Dvořák, Rachmaninov, Bruckner and Schubert, and violin concertos by Bolcom and Schnittke. “The concerts will be graced by a number of great soloists from world stages, for example, pianists Melvyn Tan, Igor Ardašev and Elisabeth Leonskaja, violinists Yumi-Hwang Williams and Milan Pal´a, and guitarist Pablo Márquez,” said Marie Kučerová, director of the orchestra.

Filharmonie Brno will have a record-breaking season in terms of international tours. In addition to prestigious guest appearances in Europe, it is planning three major overseas tours: at the beginning of October in eight British venues, at the end of October in five cities in South Korea, and a three-week American tour in February. “It hasn’t been possible to do so many tours in one season for decades. We have concerts at New York’s Carnegie Hall and the Brooklyn Academy of Music, three concerts in California, one each in Detroit, Kansas City and Lubbock, Texas, with an amazing concert hall,” said Pavel Šindelář, the orchestra’s manager.

At the beginning of May, Besední dům will celebrate 150 years since its opening. “We have prepared a two-week festival including, for example, concerts with programmes inspired by contemporary events, i.e. performances by the young Bedřich Smetana, Leoš Janáček, whom we are combining for these purposes with Petr Mička’s Horňácky Music, and Mozart’s Requiem. In cooperation with the Moravian Gallery we are preparing an exhibition about Theophilus von Hansen, who designed not only Besední dům but also the neighbouring Pražák Palace.” said Kučerová.

As in the previous season, the orchestra offers eight subscription series: two series of four concerts at the Janáček Theater, a “home” series at Besední dům with six concerts, and a chamber subscription with five evenings. The very popular Family subscription series, the Jazz & World Music series, the Cantilena Concerts and the Young Blood or Music Up Close series, which features members of the Brno Philharmonic Orchestral Academy, also continue. The season will go on sale from 30 May, when existing subscribers can renew their subscriptions (until 10 June), and tickets for extraordinary concerts and the Špilberk Festival will also be available.  

“We are selling everything online again this year so people don’t have to physically come to our pre-sale. After all, we don’t really recommend that this year due to construction work near the new concert hall. We are trying to do everything we can to make their purchase as convenient as possible, they are our most valued listeners,” Kučerová pointed out, adding that subscribers save up to half the price compared to individual tickets.

Brno Daily provides media support to Filharmonie Brno.

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