The horrors of the Stalin era

Dmitri Shostakovich reflects unsparingly on the horrors of the Stalin era with his Tenth Symphony. Specifically, the manic brutal second movement was conceived as a portrait of the dictator. The work will be conducted at these concerts by Mariss Jansons, whose musical origins are in the renowned Leningrad Shostakovich tradition; he is considered one of the best Shostakovich interpreters. We will encounter soloist Truls Mørk in Henri Dutilleux’s yearning cello concerto.

Berliner Philharmoniker

Mariss Jansons Conductor

Truls Mørk Cello

Hector Berlioz

Le Carnaval romain, Ouverture caractéristique

Henri Dutilleux

Tout un monde lointain..., Concerto for cello and orchestra

Truls Mørk Cello

Dmitri Shostakovich

Symphony No. 10 in E minor

Dates and Tickets

Thu, 03 Mar 2016 8 p.m.

Philharmonie | Introduction: 7:00 pm

Serie A

Fri, 04 Mar 2016 8 p.m.

Philharmonie | Introduction: 7:00 pm

Serie G


“The Tenth Symphony made an incredibly great impression on me, even when I was just a small boy in Riga. I always loved Shostakovich. [...] My inner world is closely linked with his,” Mariss Jansons admitted in an interview. From childhood on, the music of the Russian composer has been familiar to him – not least due to the collaboration of his father, conductor Arvīds Jansons, with Yevgeny Mravinsky, principal conductor of the Leningrad Philharmonic and later Mariss Jansons’s teacher, who premiered many of Shostakovich’s works. From the beginning of his career, the native Latvian has espoused the Russian composer; today, he is considered the leading Shostakovich interpreter. Also as guest conductor of the Berliner Philharmoniker he frequently devotes himself to his works, though he has not yet conducted his Tenth Symphony here. It is the first symphony with which Shostakovich went public after his ideological ostracism in the year 1948, ending only after Stalin’s death in 1953. The work generated heated contention after the premiere: the sombre mood of the first three movements and the seemingly artificial cheerfulness of the Finale were vexing.

The first part of this concert programme opens with Hector Berlioz’s brilliant overture Le Carnaval romain, which leads us into completely different musical worlds. Based on themes from his failed opera Benvenuto Cellini, the overture quickly became one of the French composer’s most successful pieces. The second work on the programme was inspired by verses from the cycle Les Fleurs du mal by Charles Baudelaire: Henri Dutilleux composed his expressive cello concerto entitled Tout un monde lointain for the Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovitch. At these concerts the Norwegian cellist Truls Mørk is the soloist.

(c) Bayerischer Rundfunk