The annual guest performances of the National Youth Orchestra of Germany at the Philharmonie Berlin are a popular tradition and highlight in the musical calendar of the German capital. In January 2022, the orchestra will perform here for the third time with the German National Youth Ballet, whose artistic director John Neumeier has choreographed two new works.
This year, the young ensembles will be supported by members of the Orchestre Français des Jeunes. The programme, which is dedicated to the concept of Europe, will be performed with the title “Youth shapes friendship – La jeunesse forge l’amitié” on a tour in France and Germany – the two countries from which the composers of the evening, Maurice Ravel and Richard Strauss, also come.
Moreover, the first two pieces, written in the 1910s, were inspired by a dialogue between French and German culture: while Ravel was inspired by the Viennese waltz for his stirring, dark masterpiece La Valse, Strauss’s stage work Le bourgeois gentilhomme is based on the comedy of the same name by the French baroque poet Molière. The orchestral suite was written after the ballet comedy turned out to be a failure and was reworked into the opera Ariadne auf Naxos. The second half of the programme, featuring Strauss’s delightful tone poem Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks and an orchestral version of Ravel’s famous Piano Trio, also offers the talented instrumentalists ample opportunity to demonstrate their virtuosity and passionate musicality.