Following on from the tremendously well received concerts in Berlin, Frankfurt and Vienna, the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sir Simon Rattle set their sights on New York.
Simon Rattle, who has appeared at Carnegie Hall nearly 40 times since his debut in 1976, launches his two-year Perspectives series at the hall this November with a sell-out 5-day residency. Presenting what he calls an “extraordinary journey,” he leads his orchestra in performances of all nine Beethoven symphonies in five concerts over five consecutive days from 17 – 21 November 2015.
“For orchestra, conductor, and audience,” Simon Rattle says of the Beethoven symphonies, “if you’ve heard these pieces over five days you really get an idea of how the entire 19th century was made—how it was taken from one place and moved to another by the force and genius of one man.”
The cycle begins with Beethoven symphonies Nos. 1 and 3 on Tuesday 17 November, continuing with Nos. 2 and 5 along with the Leonore Overture, No. 1 on Wednesday 18 November; Nos. 6 and 8 on Thursday 19 November; and Nos. 4 and 7 on Friday 20 November. For the last concert on Saturday 21 November, he conducts Symphony No. 9 with soloists soprano Annette Dasch, mezzo-soprano Eva Vogel, tenor Christian Elsner, and bass Dimitry Ivashchenko, alongside the Westminster Symphonic Choir.
Speaking of performing the full cycle of symphonies, Sir Simon says “to do Beethoven symphonies is hard enough, but to do a cycle of Beethoven symphonies is something very different. It’s at the centre of music. It’s such a journey through [Beethoven’s] life. And of course it’s clearly the same composer who’s written the First and who’s written the Ninth, but the distance between them is really astonishing…You can also see someone building a whole edifice that will support the music of the next 150 years.”