Concert Calendar

09 December 2017

Saturday / 8.00 p.m.

Konzerthaus Berlin / Subscription concert

Osmo Vänskä

Alina Pogostkina / violin

Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin

Jean Sibelius

“En Saga” – Symphonic poem op. 9

Carl Nielsen

Concerto for violin and orchestra op. 33

Jean Sibelius

Symphony No. 3 in C major op. 52

6.45 p.m., Ludwig-van-Beethoven-Saal
Einführung von Steffen Georgi

 Map

Concert with

Biographies

Osmo Vänskä / Conductor

Music Director of the Minnesota Orchestra for over a decade, Osmo Vänskä has led the Orchestra on five major European tours, as well as an historic trip to Cuba in May 2015 – the first visit by a major US orchestra in recent times. Other key highlights include 15 recordings, winning a Grammy Award in 2014 for ‘Best Orchestral Performance’ (for their second Sibelius album), initiating and conducting the annual Future Classics concert, ...

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Music Director of the Minnesota Orchestra for over a decade, Osmo Vänskä has led the Orchestra on five major European tours, as well as an historic trip to Cuba in May 2015 – the first visit by a major US orchestra in recent times. Other key highlights include 15 recordings, winning a Grammy Award in 2014 for ‘Best Orchestral Performance’ (for their second Sibelius album), initiating and conducting the annual Future Classics concert, and various educational projects. During the 2017/18 season in Minnesota, Vänskä leads concerts commemorating Finland’s Centennial, a world premiere by Sebastian Currier, a two-week Tchaikovsky Marathon, and Mahler’s Symphony Nos.1 and 4.

In great demand as a guest conductor, in 2017/18 he debuts with Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, SWR Sinfonieorchester, Toronto and National Taiwan symphony orchestras, and returns to Orchestre de Paris, San Francisco Symphony, and the Seoul and Helsinki philharmonic orchestras, amongst others. Further concerts include appearances with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, following his appointment as its Honorary Conductor in 2017 – celebrating his long-standing relationship with the ensemble, after having served as its Principal Guest Conductor since the 2014/15 season and Chief Conductor from 1993 to 1996. Concurrently the Conductor Laureate of the Lahti Symphony Orchestra (having previously been its Music Director), he also held the position of Chief Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

Last season, Vänskä embarked on an ambitious tour of Europe with the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, visiting nine cities in eighteen days. With soloists drawn from the ranks of Curtis graduates (Peter Serkin, Benjamin Schmid and Curtis President Roberto Díaz) they performed in Helsinki, Bremen, Berlin, Dresden, London, Salzburg, Vienna, Wrocław and Lusławice. A live recording from this tour of Penderecki’s Concerto Doppio for Violin and Viola, featuring Schmid and Díaz, will be released on an upcoming CD on the DUX label.

A distinguished recording artist, primarily for the BIS label, his latest release is a recording of Mahler’s Symphony No.5, with the Minnesota Orchestra, to be followed this year by Symphonies Nos.2 and 6, continuing the cycle dedicated to the composer. With Minnesota he has recorded the complete Beethoven and Sibelius symphony cycles, also for BIS, to rave reviews internationally; while recordings of Beethoven’s piano concertos with Yevgeny Sudbin, have also garnered worldwide praise – including Grammy and Gramophone award nominations.

Vänskä studied conducting at Finland’s Sibelius Academy and was awarded first prize in the 1982 Besançon Competition. He began his career as a clarinetist, occupying, amongst others, the co-principal chair of the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, and in recent years has enjoyed a return to the clarinet, including on a 2012 recording of Kalevi Aho’s chamber works.

Vänskä is the recipient of a Royal Philharmonic Society Award, the Finlandia Foundation’s Arts and Letters award, and the 2010 Ditson Award from Columbia University. He holds honorary doctorates from the universities of Glasgow and Minnesota and was named Musical America’s 2005 Conductor of the Year. In 2013 he received the Annual Award from the German Record Critics' Award Association for his involvement in BIS’s recordings of the complete works by Sibelius.

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Alina Pogostkina / Violin

Praised for her “deeply moving” performances (Hamburger Abendblatt), Alina Pogostkina, winner of the 2005 Sibelius Competition in Helsinki, performs at many of the world’s most renowned festivals and concert venues. She has collaborated with conductors such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Gustavo Dudamel, David Zinman, Jonathan Nott, Paavo Järvi, Michael Sanderling, David Afkham, Robin Ticciati, Thomas Hengelbrock and John Storgårds ...

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Praised for her “deeply moving” performances (Hamburger Abendblatt), Alina Pogostkina, winner of the 2005 Sibelius Competition in Helsinki, performs at many of the world’s most renowned festivals and concert venues. She has collaborated with conductors such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Gustavo Dudamel, David Zinman, Jonathan Nott, Paavo Järvi, Michael Sanderling, David Afkham, Robin Ticciati, Thomas Hengelbrock and John Storgårds.

Highlights of this season include debuts with Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia and Mikko Franck, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin and Osmo Vänskä and Budapest Festival Orchestra with Marin Alsop. Alina Pogostkina will open the BBC Symphony Orchestra concerts season at the Barbican Centre performing Berg’s Violin Concerto under the baton of Sakari Oramo. She will return to RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra with Clemens Schuldt and the Royal Stockhom Philharmonic Orchestra with Karl-Heinz Steffens.

Recent concerts have included Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, the Hallé, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, NHK and Yomiuri Nippon symphony orchestras, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, SWR Symphonieorchester, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and hr-Sinfonieorchester. She celebrated major successes with Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Orchestre National de France and St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra.

Alina Pogostkina performs at festivals such as Schleswig-Holstein, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and Bergen, Salzburger Festspiele, Edinburgh International Festival, Grafenegg Festival, Istanbul Music Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival and Easter Festival Aix-en-Provence.

Following studies of the baroque violin with Reinhard Goebel at Mozarteum Salzburg, Alina Pogostkina displays impressive versatility in diverse and wide-ranging repertoire from baroque and classical, often played on gut strings, to the modern masterworks. Collaborations with Reinhard Goebel include performances with the Tapiola Sinfonietta, Helsinki Baroque Orchestra and WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln.

An ardent chamber musician, she has worked with musicians such as Steven Isserlis, Yuri Bashmet, Gidon Kremer, Menahem Pressler, Christoph Eschenbach, Pekka Kuusisto, Maxim Rysanov, Jörg Widmann and Joshua Bell.

Appearing in numerous radio and television recordings and broadcasts, Pogostkina's passion for contemporary music is evident in her highly acclaimed recording of Pēteris Vasks’ complete violin works, released in Spring 2012.

Born in St. Petersburg, Alina Pogostkina grew up in Germany and received violin lessons from her father Alexander Pogostkin in the beginning. She later studied with Antje Weithaas at Berlin’s Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler. She plays the 1717 “Sasserno” by Antonio Stradivari, generously provided to her by the Nippon Music Foundation.

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