Zubin Mehta and Rudolf Buchbinder with Beethoven and Strauss

In memory of Claudio Abbado

Berliner Philharmoniker
Zubin Mehta

Rudolf Buchbinder

  • Gustav Mahler
    Adagietto from the Symphony No. 5 (00:12:01)

  • Anton Webern
    6 Pieces for orchestra op. 6b (00:14:36)

  • Ludwig van Beethoven
    Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat major »Emperor« (00:41:41)

    Rudolf Buchbinder Piano

  • Richard Strauss
    Ein Heldenleben (00:53:20)

  • free

    Zubin Mehta in conversation with Martin Stegner (00:11:26)

We mourn the passing of Claudio Abbado. The former Chief Conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker died at the age of 80 in Bologna on 20 January. The Berliner Philharmoniker therefore dedicate these concerts to the memory of Claudio Abbado. The conductor is Zubin Mehta, who was a friend of Abbado for more than 50 years.

In addition to the scheduled programme, the Berliner Philharmoniker and Zubin Mehta will open the concert with the Adagietto from Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. With this work they pay special tribute to Abbado as a great Mahler interpreter who conducted the Berliner Philharmoniker in many unforgettable performances of Mahler’s symphonies.

Claudio Abbado also had a deep understanding of works of the Second Viennese School. The delicate fragility of Anton Webern’s Six Pieces for Orchestra, which Abbado conducted several times during his Berlin years, particularly reflected his ideal of a transparent sound. The Six Pieces were inspired by the death of Webern’s mother; the fourth piece is a stylized funeral march. In Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto – with Rudolf Buchbinder as soloist – the mood becomes triumphantly heroic, continuing in this spirit during Richard Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben. Although Abbado’s interpretations were also characterized by emphatic intensity, even in moments of musical self-certainty they were always an expression of humanity.

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