Soloist: Baiba Skride
The Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra
Music Director: Emmanuel Krivine
Conductor: Vassily Sinaisky
Ludwig van Beethoven
Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 61
Symphonie fantastique, Op. 14
The orchestra of the Grand Duchy, the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg (OPL), represents a very dynamic part of the culture of its country. Since its stunning debut in 1933 under the aegis of Radio Luxembourg (RTL), the orchestra has toured throughout Europe. Publicly administered since 1996, the OPL has been, since 2005, in residence at the Philharmonie Luxembourg, one of the most prestigious concert halls in Europe. Since January 2012 both institutions have formed one and the same entity.
The acoustics of its home, praised by great orchestras, conductors and soloists all over the world, its long-standing connections with such institutions as the Salle Pleyel in Paris and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw as well as festivals including Musica (Strasbourg) and Ars Musica (Brussels) have contributed to making the OPL an orchestra renowned for the elegance of its sonority. Moreover, the precision and musicality of its Music Director, Emmanuel Krivine, and the orchestra’s close collaboration with such first-class musicians as Evgeny Kissin, Julia Fischer, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Jean-Guihen Queyras have consolidated the orchestra’s reputation. Its standing has been confirmed by an impressive list of prizes awarded for some twenty CDs, all released in the last seven years, among them the Grand Prix Charles Cros, Victoires de la musique classique, Orphée d’Or de l’Académie du disque lyrique, the Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik, Télérama ffff, Pizzicato Excellentia, IRR Outstanding and BBC Music Choice, as well as several Diapasons d’Or, the Choc du Monde de la musique, Pizzicato Supersonic and Classica R10 to name but a few.
Now in his seventh season, Emmanuel Krivine is the sixth Music Director of the OPL (following in the footsteps of Henri Pensis, Louis de Froment, Leopold Hager, David Shallon and Bramwell Tovey). A disciple of Karl Böhm, Emmanuel Krivine holds to the ideal of a symphony orchestra that adapts to all available idioms and repertoires. This open attitude and the clarity of his readings have enabled the OPL to make a name for itself as “a transparent, elegant orchestra with a beautiful palette of colours” (Le Figaro), “free from anything flowery or nebulous but imbued with stylistic security and attuned to the specific qualities of each piece” (WDR). Alongside the classical and romantic repertoire, the orchestra’s programme reserves an important place for music of the 20th and 21st centuries; works by Ivo Malec, Hugues Dufourt, Toshio Hosokawa, Klaus Huber, Bernd Alois Zimmermann, Helmut Lachenmann, Georges Lentz, Philippe Gaubert, Philip Glass, Michael Jarrell, Gabriel Pierné, Arthur Honegger and many other composers are regularly performed. The orchestra has also recorded the complete orchestral works of Iannis Xenakis.
The orchestra demonstrates its diversity with regular opera productions staged at the Grand Théâtre de Luxembourg, film concerts including Live Cinema in collaboration with the Cinémathèque de la Ville de Luxembourg, Pops at the Phil evenings with such stars as Patti Austin, Kurt Elling, Dionne Warwick, Maurane and Angélique Kidjo in addition to open-air concerts with jazz and rock groups as part of the Fête de la Musique. Soloists featured in the 2013-14 season include Martin Grubinger, Tine Thing Helseth, Vesselina Kasarova, Angelika Kirchschlager, Nikolai Lugansky, Truls Mørk, Emmanuel Pahud, Alina Pogostkina, Baiba Skride, Alexandre Tharaud, Camilla Tilling and Arcadi Volodos as well as conductors Richard Egarr, Susanna Mälkki, Juanjo Mena, Antonio Méndez, Tito Muñoz, Franck Ollu, Philip Pickett, Jonathan Stockhammer, Stefan Soltesz, Juraj Valčuha, Gast Waltzing and Ulrich Windfuhr.
Alongside its extensive repertoire and wide-ranging audiences and in addition to its high-calibre musicians, one further point links the OPL and the Philharmonie Luxembourg, namely the importance they both attach to innovative education and outreach activities for children, teenagers and adults. Since 2003, the orchestra’s own music education team login:music has organised concerts and workshops for schools, children and families, DVD productions and mini-concerts in schools and hospitals. It also prepares school classes for subscription concerts with music appreciation workshops, and it runs the Dating: cycle which draws on actors and multi-media tools for encounters with works by selected composers.
The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the OPL share a common spirit of openness towards Europe and the world. The ninety-eight musicians hailing from some twenty different nations (including two thirds from Luxembourg and its neighbouring countries France, Germany and Belgium) are active throughout the Greater Region with numerous concerts and activities. Tours take the orchestra to many music venues in Europe as well as Asia and the USA. The 2013-14 season will see the orchestra perform in Spain and Russia. OPL concerts are regularly broadcast by Luxembourg’s radio 100,7 and internationally by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).
The OPL is financially supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Grand Duchy and by the City of Luxembourg. Its partners are BGL BNP Paribas as well as Garage Arnold Kontz, Crédit Agricole Private Banking, Banque de Luxembourg, Gazprombank (OJSC) and Post Luxembourg. Since December 2012 the “Luxembourgeois” cello crafted by Matteo Goffriller has been made available to the OPL by BGL BNP Paribas.