Klaus Lederer

Senator for Culture and Europe

(Photo: Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa)

Dear concert guests of the Berliner Philharmoniker,

An exciting artistic and musical year lies ahead, not only for you, but also for the Berliner Philharmoniker themselves. Kirill Petrenko begins his tenure as chief conductor of the orchestra, and the first year is always something very special. Not only for him, but also for the musicians and naturally for you as well. I would like to draw your attention to a long-standing tradition and particular highlight of our city’s musical year. On 30 August, at the opening of the concert season, the Musikfest Berlin begins, a successful collaboration between the Berliner Festspiele and the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation which will continue again this year.

Outstanding concert experiences

It is also a long tradition to offer renowned guest conductors and soloists a temporary home. Once again, distinguished names from the classical music scene promise outstanding concert experiences. Conductors such as Zubin Mehta, Christian Thielemann, Daniel Harding, Paavo Järvi, Ivan Fischer, Sir Simon Rattle, Mariss Jansons, Teodor Currentzis, Gustavo Dudamel and Emmanuelle Haïm will take the podium at the Philharmonie. Such prominent soloists as Patricia Kopatchinskaja, Isabelle Faust, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Frank Peter Zimmermann and Leif Ove Andsnes will appear with them, and the marvellous voices of Elīna Garanča and Christiane Karg, to mention but two, will also be heard. We can especially look forward to soprano Marlis Petersen, who will be Artist in Residence with the Berliner Philharmoniker this season. You will discover many other musical treasures as you browse through this website.

Musical excellence

And just as artists from all over the world are guests with the Berliner Philharmoniker, the orchestra also goes out into the world: many guest performances are on the agenda during the coming season. At the end of August and beginning of September they travel to Salzburg, Lucerne and Bucharest with Kirill Petrenko. Japan is the destination for the annual autumn tour in November, and the European Concert on 1 May as well as other concerts will take the orchestra and Kirill Petrenko to Israel, followed by concerts in several European capitals. Musical excellence is not the only reason the Berliner Philharmoniker are important to Berlin’s cultural life and vitality. The orchestra’s self-image as a cultural institution with political and social responsibility takes it out of the concert hall to the social hotspots of our city.

Under the heading “cultural participation” they have developed numerous projects to bring the orchestra’s music to children, young people and adults who are not able to attend concerts. This season, the Education Programme will present a musical project for young musicians with Kirill Petrenko, a prison project focussing on Beethoven’s Fidelio and many other activities throughout the city. The Berliner Philharmoniker will also continue their outstanding Vocal Heroes project. I marvel at the fact that along with all of these activities, there is still time for developing new ideas and putting them into practice. For example, during the coming season there will be a weekend concert marathon featuring chamber music by Beethoven to celebrate the 250th anniversary of his birth, an Israel weekend and an electronic music festival.

All of this guarantees unforgettable concert experiences, which I wish for all of us.

Klaus Lederer
Senator for Culture and Europe