Joseph Haydn

Symphony No. 26 in D minor, Lamentatione

Gustav Mahler

Symphony No. 1 in D major, Titan, mvt. 2 “Blumine” (early version)

Claude Vivier

Lonely Child for soprano and orchestra

Gustav Mahler

Symphony No. 3 in D minor, mvt. 2 “What the Flowers in the Meadow Tell Me” (arranged by Benjamin Britten)

Giacinto Scelsi

Elohim for 12 strings

Richard Wagner

Siegfried Idyll, WWV 103

Ilan Volkov
Conductor
Mahler Chamber Orchestra
Claire Booth
soprano
Ilan Volkov

Ilan Volkovshowed himself to be a conductor of great sensitivity, intelligently and unfussily guiding the orchestra through the three strikingly different works. The Guardian Born in Israel in September 1976, Ilan Volkov began his conducting career at the age of nineteen. Following studies at London’s Royal College of Music, he secured positions as Principal Conductor of the London Philharmonic Youth Orchestra and Assistant Conductor of the Boston Symphony.

In 2003 he was appointed Principal Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and subsequently became its Principal Guest Conductor in 2009. Between 2011 and 2014 he has held the post of Music Director and Principal Conductor of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Volkov’s arrival coincided with the opening of Harpa, Reykjavík’s visually striking new concert hall. In March 2012 he curated and directed a three-day festival of contemporary music, Tectonics, celebrating the centenary year of John Cage, exploring works by Icelandic composers and introducing the world premieres of music by, among others, Jesper Pedersen, Frank Denyer, Guðmundur Steinn Gunnarsson and Áki Ásgeirsson. “How can an orchestra, the nineteenth-century beast, be more radical and experimental? Is it possible? This is one of the questions that started me on a journey that led to the first Tectonics festival,” notes the conductor. Tectonics features programmes of classical modern music combined with other new music genres such as improvisation, electronics and rock. In 2013 Tectonics took place in two different cities, Reykjavik and Glasgow, with Iceland Symphony Orchestra and BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra respectively. Since 2014, Tectonics expanded even further with a residency at the Adelaide Festival with the Adelaide Symphony, as well as future Tectonics in Oslo, New York, Tel Aviv, London. A frequent guest with leading orchestras worldwide, Ilan Volkov works regularly with a wide range of ensembles, and appears in many of the foremost Festivals of the world, including Salzburg, Edinburgh, BBC Proms, Lucerne and Berlin. Highlights of his recent and forthcoming schedule include performances with the BBC Symphony and Stuttgart Opera, as well as CBSO, SWR Stuttgart, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, Ensemble Intercontemporain, WDR Köln, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. Equally active in the opera house as in the concert hall, Volkov has conducted Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin for San Francisco Opera, Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Glyndebourne Festival, Peter Grimes for Washington National Opera, Kurt Weill’s The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny for Théâtre du Capitole de Toulouse, Bartók’s Duke Bluebeard’s Castle with the Israeli Opera. In 2016, he will be conducting Barry’s Importance of being earnest at the Lincoln Centre in New York. His many critically acclaimed recordings for the Hyperion label include two albums of Stravinsky’s ballet scores, comprising Jeu de cartes, Agon, Orpheus, Le baiser de la fée and Scènes de ballet; a Gramophone Award-winning disc of Britten’s complete works for piano and orchestra with Steven Osborne, and a critically acclaimed survey of Liszt’s three Funeral Odes with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra released in the composer’s anniversary year. Volkov’s NMC disc of works by Jonathan Harvey, Body Mandala, received a Gramophone Award in 2008; his recording for the Aeon label of Harvey’s Speakings, meanwhile, won the prestigious Monaco Prize and the Prix Caecilia de l’Union de la Presse Musicale Belge in 2011.

Ilan Volkov is one of the guiding forces behind Levontin 7. The performance venue, among the most adventurous in Tel Aviv, brings together diverse musical genres, including classical, jazz, electronic and rock. The enterprise reflects Volkov’s determination to keep alive the creative spirit and sense of artistic adventure that shaped so many works composed during the opening decades of the last century.


Mahler Chamber Orchestra

Mahler Chamber Orchestra– renowned for its passion and creativity – was founded in 1997 with the shared vision of being a free and international ensemble. MCO is a nomadic collective of exceptional musicians, with 45 members of the core ensemble spanning 20 different countries and uniting for specific tours in Europe and across the world.

The orchestra is on the move nearly 180 days per year, and has so far performed in 35 countries across 5 continents. It is governed collectively by its management team and orchestra board, and decisions are made democratically with the participation of all musicians.

At the heart of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra’s music making is the passion for chamber music that is shared by all MCO musicians. The orchestra’s sound is characterized by the tight ensemble playing of its alert and independent musical personalities. The MCO’s core repertoire lies in the Viennese Classical and early Romantic periods, while the orchestra also plays contemporary works and world premieres.

MCO musicians all share a strong desire to continually deepen their engagement with audiences. This has inspired a growing number of offstage musical encounters and projects that bring music, learning and creativity to communities across the globe.

The orchestra received its most significant artistic impulses from its founding mentor, Claudio Abbado, and from Conductor Laureate Daniel Harding. Violinist Isabelle Faust and the conductors Daniele Gatti and Teodor Currentzis are current Artistic Partners who inspire and shape the orchestra during long-term collaborations.

In 2015, the MCO concluded its major four-year project with Leif Ove Andsnes, The Beethoven Journey. Andsnes led the complete Beethoven concerto cycle from the keyboard in international residencies including Bonn, Lucerne, Vienna, Paris, New York, Shanghai, Tokyo, and London. The complete cycle is available on CD and was recognized with various prices; amongst them the BBC Music magazine’s 2015 Recording of the Year Award.

2016 starts with several high-profile projects: In January, Mitsuko Uchida and the MCO inaugurate their long-term partnership focused on Mozart’s piano concertos with an extensive tour to Spain, Luxemburg, Salzburg, and Frankfurt. In February, the orchestra proceeds with its Beethoven symphonies cycle under the baton of Artistic Partner Daniele Gatti in Italy. Daniel Harding will conduct the 8th MCO Academy project at partner venues in Dortmund, Cologne and Essen, Germany. In March, the orchestra tours with a semi-staged concert version of George Benjamin’s masterpiece Written on Skin under the baton of the composer. The Mahler Chamber Orchestra played the world premiere of Written on Skin in 2012, and the US stage premiere at the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York in summer 2015.

 


Claire Booth

Claire Booth has become internationally renowned both for her commitment to an extraordinary breadth of repertoire, and for the vitality and musicianship that she brings to the operatic stage and concert platform. In the 2013-14 season alone her diverse schedule includes Kurtag’s Kafka Fragments in Netia Jones’ groundbreaking multi media production at the Royal Opera House, Mozart concert arias with the Deutsche Symphonie Orchester at the Berlin Philharmonie, Handel’s virtuosic ‘Delirio Amoroso’ with the Elbipolis Barockorchester and Oliver Knussen’s ‘Whitman Settings’ in her debut with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Recent operatic highlights include Rosina inThe Barber of Seville and Dorinda in Handel’s Orlando both for Scottish Opera, Nora in Vaughan Williams’ Riders to the Sea for English National Opera, Anne Truelove with City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Lucia in Rape of Lucretia, Narrator in Benjamin’s Into the Little Hill both for the Aldeburgh Festival, Zerlina and First Niece in Peter Grimes both for Opera North, Despina for Opera Nantes-Angers and Mélisande for Opera Theatre Company Dublin. Most recently she made her debut at Welsh National Opera singing ‘Pakati’ in Jonathan Harvey’s ‘Wagner Dream’.

Her numerous concert appearances have resulted in close associations with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and Ensemble Intecontemporain, the Aldeburgh and Holland Festivals and other recent debut appearances with both the Berlin Deutsche Symphonie and London Philharmonic Orchestra. Regular appearances at the BBC Proms have included Knussen’s Requiem – Songs for Sue and Whitman Settings, George Crumb’s Ancient Voices of Children, Luke Bedford’s On voit tout en aventure, Berg’s Der Wein and Debussy’s Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien.

For more than a decade she has collaborated with video director Netia Jones to produce a series of critically acclaimed productions. These include her performances of Max in Knussen’s Where the Wild Things Are and Rhoda in Higglety, Piggelty, Pop, which toured from the Aldeburgh Festival via The Los Angeles Philharmonic and a further debut under Gustavo Dudamel, to the Barbican’s own 60th birthday celebrations for the composer.

Her most recent CD release is a live recording of her role as Lucia in Britten’s Rape of Lucretia with Angelika Kirkschlager and Ian Bostridge for EMI. Other recordings include Harvey’s opera Wagner Dream with Martyn Brabbins and the Ictus Ensemble, John Eccles’ The Judgement of Paris with Christian Curnyn and the Early Opera Company and diverse works by Oliver Knussen including ‘Requiem, Songs for Sue’ of which she sang the world première.

The seasons ahead see Claire take on the title role in Jancek’s Cunning Little Vixen for Garsington Opera, returns to Welsh National Opera and performances of Birtwistle’s ‘Yan Tan Tethera’ with the Britten Sinfonia.

On the concert stage Claire performs recital programmes with Iain Burnside for BBC Radio 3, and takes part in a retrospective of Julian Anderson’s works at London’s Wigmore Hall. She sings Britten’s Spring Symphony with BBCSO as part of Aldeburgh’s Britten centenary celebration weekend under Oliver Knussen, returns to the Ensemble Intercontemporarin to perform excerpts from Harvey’s opera Wagner Dream and performs ‘Augenlieder’ with the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by the composer, her long time collaborator Ryan Wigglesworth.