Winrich Hopp in conversation with Benedikt von Bernstorff (16 min.)
Since 2006, the musicologist Winrich Hopp has been the artistic director of Musikfest Berlin whose programming has captivated press and public alike due to the way it constantly sheds new light on the symphony orchestra’s Classical-Romantic core repertoire by juxtaposing it with contemporary works. Here, in an interview with the music journalist Benedikt von Bernstorff, Hopp discusses the central themes of the 2014 festival and the special nature of the close cooperation between the music festival and the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation. In addition to compositions by Schumann, Brahms, Rihm and Widmann, the focus was on the French horn, which is considered most Romantic of all instruments and which underwent significant technical development in the 19th century. Hopp further explains why Berlioz’s Treatise on Instrumentation plays a central role in his programming, and how he manages to organise the festival’s themes so flexibly that the guest performances by international orchestras can take place in a coherent dramaturgical framework. The interview took place at the beginning of the Schumann-Brahms cycle, in which the four symphonies of both composers were performed alongside each other by Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker.