Programme guide

For the Waldbühne concert, the last performance before the orchestra takes its summer break, chief conductor Kirill Petrenko has put together an exciting programme of Russian music with compositions by Anatoly Lyadov, Sergei Rachmaninov and Modest Mussorgsky.

Lyadov, whom his teacher Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov described as having an “alert mind, a good heart and a great musical talent”, but also as being “disastrously lazy”, only completed a very modest number of mostly short orchestral and piano pieces. The symphonic poem Kikimora, which tells the tale of a wicked witch, is characterised by a mysterious atmosphere in a beguilingly sensual sound.

Modest Mussorgsky’s composition Pictures at an Exhibition is perhaps the most famous work in the history of music that was demonstrably inspired by the visual arts. The piano cycle, later brilliantly orchestrated by Maurice Ravel, depicts a walk through a museum. Mussorgsky imaginatively and vividly translates the pictures he contemplates into tone paintings, bringing them to life.

For Kirill Petrenko, Daniil Trifonov, with whom he appears here for the third time in his tenure as chief conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker, is one of the few legitimate heirs of the Russian piano school tradition. In Rachmaninov’s late-Romantic Second Piano Concerto, Trifonov is given the opportunity to demonstrate once again his astonishing virtuosity, his sense of sound and his lyrical creative power.

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