The Berliner Philharmoniker’s Europakonzert, which has taken place every year since 1991 on 1 May in alternating European capitals, are a tribute to the diversity of the countries and cultures of this united continent – a message that is more important today than ever before.
In 2023, Barcelona will host the iconic concert, which, with performances of Valentin Silvestrov’s Prayer for the Ukraine and Tōru Takemitsu’s Requiem for string orchestra, will also remind us that peaceful coexistence cannot be taken for granted. The Berliner Philharmoniker and chief conductor Kirill Petrenko will present an all-Mozart programme in Antoni Gaudí’s famous Sagrada Família, considered the Catalan master builder's finest work. It opens with the Symphony in G minor, K. 183 – an emotional musical drama whose expression leaves behind the earlier Mozart works written for social occasions. This is followed by the motet “Exsultate, jubilate”, which provides a distinct contrast. This is probably Mozart’s most famous sacred composition for soprano and is a small concerto for a virtuoso vocal solo, which will be sung by the British soprano Louise Alder.
The main work of the evening is Mozart’s well-known 1779 “Coronation Mass”, which should actually be called “Easter Mass”, as it was intended for this most important festival of the church year. It only became a “Coronation Mass” when it was performed in Frankfurt in 1790 for the coronation of Leopold II as emperor. Magnificent music, presented by a superb ensemble of soloists and the Orfeó Català choir.