Dvořák and Strauss

  1. Cello Concerto
  2. An Alpine Symphony
  1. Vasily Petrenko conductor
  2. Johannes Moser cello

Venture up the steepest symphonic peaks with the Oslo Philharmonic and Vasily Petrenko in Strauss’spectacular Alpine Symphony.

Strauss explored how expressively and in what great detail a symphony orchestra was capable of evoking a hike in the alps. The music follows the mountain climb minute for minute, from sunrise to sunset, and through it we can hear the sounds of nature, of alpine experiences, and of the elevated human spirit resonate fully. In addition to this, Johannes Moser leads us into a different world of fantasy, with Dvorak’s lyrical and wonderfully rich Cello Concerto.

At least I have learned how to orchestrate”, pronounced Richard Strauss (1864−1949) laconically during the dress rehearsal for the world premiere of his Alpine Symphony in Berlin in 1915. Few composers have mastered all the nooks and crannies of orchestration better than namely Strauss. The abililty to portray characters, events, or feelings so precisely and in such a detailed manner stood the composer in good stead when writing his tone poems and his operas. Alpine Symphony starts in the dark of night, with a deep carpet of sound which slowly spreads across the orchestra before the brass instruments remind us of the steep climb awaiting us. As soon as the sun rises, we sling on our rucksacks and start the ascent. On the way we hear cowbells and birdsong, while the fresh mountain air fills our ears, but ahead lies not only pastoral idyll and wondrous views, but also terrifying glaciers, traitorous mists and even a veritable mountain tempest. Strauss’ hike across the peaks is not for delicate souls, but as long as you hold on tight, you’ll be off on an unforgettable musical journey.

Since its world premiere in London in 1896, Antonin Dvorak’s (1841−1904) Cello Concerto has represented for cellists what Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto represents for violinists; namely the one, great, Romantic solo concerto from the 19th century which every musician simply must play. Already from the first bars, the composer demonstrates his craftsmanship brilliantly, as he does his rich multitude of ideas and his ability to conjure up one long, sustained, beautiful melody after the other. Musicologist Donald Tovey has described the side theme as “one of the most beautiful passages ever written for horn” and which the composer himself described as one of his favourite melodies. When the soloist eventually enters, every tone and every line is scrupulously well prepared for his instrument. Tonight, German-Canadian cellist Johannes Moser will bath us in Dvorak’s luxurious cello sound, showcasing his own eminent virtuosity and musicality to our Oslo audience. 

(In photo: Johannes Moser, Photo: Manfred Esser; Text: Thomas Erma Møller; Translation from Norwegian: Sarah Osa)

Tickets

  • Adult: 100 - 470 NOK
  • Senior: 100 - 375 NOK
  • Student: 100 - 235 NOK
  • Child: 100 NOK
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