Programme Guide

Like the scholarship holders of the Karajan Academy, the composers of the works performed here were also young at the time they were written. Mozart’s spirited, melancholic and virtuosic Sinfonia Concertante from 1779 was his last composition for solo violin and also the only one in which a solo viola appears.

Shostakovich began work on his Two Pieces for String Octet at the age of 18. The first of the two is characterised by an earnestness reminiscent of late Beethoven, while the second is marked by dissonances and abrupt rhythms that already clearly announce Shostakovich’s personal style.

Brahms wrote his two serenades as he was moving from the piano pieces, lieder and chamber works of his early creative period to larger-scale forms. His second contribution to the genre is unmistakably linked to the model of Mozart’s wind serenades, especially in the wonderful woodwind passages of the slow movement. As Brahms expanded its Classical instrumentation to include low strings but do without violins, here is a rare opportunity for Tabea Zimmermann to take on the role of concertmaster from the desk of the first violas.

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