Due to a serious foot injury and subsequent surgery, chief conductor Kirill Petrenko has been ordered by his doctor to take further rest. Nevertheless, he will conduct Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 7 on the upcoming festival tour to the Salzburg Festival (28 August), the Lucerne Festival (31 August) and the BBC Proms in London (3 September).
The second planned concert programme will be taken over by Daniel Harding with concerts at the Salzburg Festival (29 August), the Lucerne Festival (1 September) and the BBC Proms (4 September). The programme has been altered: in addition to Alfred Schnittke’s Viola Concerto with Tabea Zimmermann as soloist, the programme now includes Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4. The Berliner Philharmoniker and Kirill Petrenko are very grateful to Daniel Harding for agreeing to conduct these concerts.
Two great conductors took Daniel Harding, who was born in Oxford in 1975, under their wing at the beginning of his career: Sir Simon Rattle and Claudio Abbado. Rattle, at that time still music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, was so impressed by a recording by Harding, who was just 17, that he made him his assistant. He went on to assist Claudio Abbado and the Berliner Philharmoniker, with whom he made his debut stepping in for Franz Welser-Möst. Daniel Harding was only 21 at the time, and his appearance caused a sensation. The critics were amazed by his “wealth of experience” and his spirited conducting style. That was the beginning of a long-standing artistic friendship with the orchestra which has intensified in recent years. The highlights of their collaboration thus far have included performances of Schumann’s Faust Scenes, Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette, the European Concert at the Musée dʼOrsay in Paris in 2019 and interpretations of works by Gustav Mahler.