Johann Sebastian Bach
Messe für Soli, Chor und Orchester h-Moll BWV 232
Vladimir Jurowski - Conductor
Vladimir Jurowski has been Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin since 2017. He has meanwhile extended his contract until 2027. In parallel, he has been General Music Director of the Bavarian State Opera in Munich since 2021.
After receiving training at the Moscow Conservatory The conductor, pianist and musicologist Vladimir Jurowski emigrated to Germany in 1990. Here he continued his studies at the music conservatories in Dresden and Berlin. In 1995 he made his international debut at the British Wexford Festival with Rimski-Korsakov’s Mainacht and in the same year at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden with Nabucco. Subsequently he was, among other things, First Kapellmeister of the Komische Oper Berlin (1997- 2001) and Music Director of the Glyndebourne Festival Opera (2001-2013). In 2003 Vladimir Jurowski was appointed Principal Guest Conductor of the London Philharmonic Orchestra and has been its Principal Conductor since 2007 until 2021. He was also Artistic Director of the State Academic Symphony Orchestra Yevgeny Svetlanov of the Russian Federation until 2021, Artistic Director of the International George Enescu Festival in Bucharest and Principal Artist of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment in Great Britain. He works regularly with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the ensemble unitedberlin.
Vladimir Jurowski has conducted the major orchestras of Europe and North America, including the Berlin, Vienna and New York Philharmonic Orchestras, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, the Boston and Chicago Symphony Orchestras, the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, the Staatskapelle Dresden and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra.
He is a recurring guest conductor in in London, Berlin, Dresden, Luzern, Schleswig-Holstein und Grafenegg as well as at the Rostopowitsch-Festival. Although Vladimir Jurowski is invited as a guest conductor by top orchestras from all over the world, in future he would like to concentrate his activities on that geographical area which is acceptable to him from an ecological point of view.
In 2022/2023 he will perform with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin in concerts in various cities in Germany, Italy and Antwerp in the Netherlands. The joint CD recordings of Vladimir Jurowski and the RSB began in 2015 with Alfred Schnittke’s Symphony No. 3, followed by works by Britten, Hindemith, Strauss, Mahler and soon again Schnittke.
Vladimir Jurowski has been the recipient of numerous awards for his achievements, including various international record prizes. In 2016, he was bestowed an honorary doctorate from Prince Charles at the Royal College of Music in London. In 2018, the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards named him Conductor of the Year. In summer 2020, Jurowski was awarded the Order of Cultural Merit by the Romanian President in recognition of his work as Artistic Director of the George Enescu Festival.
Julia Lezhneva - Sopran 1
The young Russian soprano Julia Lezhneva convinces and inspires internationally: her voice has been described as “angelic” (The New York Times), she sings with “pure tone” (Opernwelt) and “immaculate technique” (The Guardian). Finally, the Süddeutsche Zeitung sees her as a sorceress: she can make her voice almost disappear while performing the most insane vocal tricks and garland fireworks.”
Julia Lezhneva’s international career began with a bang when she caused a sensation at the 2010 Classical Brit Awards at London’s Royal Albert Hall with Rossini’s Fra il padre at the invitation of Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.
Just a decade later she discovers a broad repertoire with various orchestras, conductors, operas and oratorios. She made her debuts with the Berlin Philharmonic in October 2019 and at the Musikverein in Vienna in December 2019 with great success. She was invited back to the Mozart Week Salzburg in January 2020, this time under Sir András Schiff in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro and will be performing there in 2023 Sing Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
In December 2020 she made her acclaimed debut with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Herbert Blomstedt.
Orchestras such as the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, the Mariinsky Orchestra, the Russian National Orchestra, the Orquestra Nacional de España, the Evgeny Svetlanov Orchestra, the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and the Seoul Philharmonic invite Julia Lezhneva again and again, and she regularly works with them renowned conductors such as Adam Fischer, Giovanni Antonini, Herbert Blomstedt, Paavo Järvi, Vladimir Jurowski and Andrea Marcon.
Julia Lezhneva is a welcome guest at the Salzburg Festival, the Schwetzinger Festival, the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival, the Lucerne Festival, the Dubrovnik Festival, the Festival de la Vézère, the Sion Festival, the Nordland Musikfestukke
Julia Lezhneva’s debut in Handel’s Alcina (Morgana) at the Hamburg State Opera was celebrated with jubilation in September 2018 and she was immediately invited back for Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia and other performances of Alcina. In 2021 she sang the role of Poppea in Handel’s new production of Agrippina (director: Barrie Kosky), in 2022 Zerlina in Don Giovanni – again at the Hamburg State Opera. In addition, she appears in several other opera productions, including Vivaldi’s Orlando Furioso (Angelica), Porpora’s Polifemo (Galatea), Germanico in Germania (Ersinda), Carlo il Calvo (Gildippe), Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro (Susanna, Barberina), Handel’s Tamerlano and Oreste.
In winter 2019 she made her debut in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio (conducted by Vladimir Jurowski); in the same season she sang in Handel’s Messiah and La Resurrezione, Vivaldi’s Juditha triumphans; as well as in Haydn’s Creation and Mahler’s 4th Symphony.
Julia Lezhneva regularly gives recitals. Her repertoire includes songs and arias by Russian, English, Italian and German composers.
Julia Lezhneva releases exclusively on DECCA records. In April 2017 she released her last solo album with arias by Carl Heinrich Graun together with Concerto Köln. For this she received the OPUS Klassik 2018. Recent publications are Porpora’s Carlo il Calvo (2022), Vivaldi’s Gloria with Franco Fagioli and Diego Fasolis (2018), Porpora’s Germanico in Germania with Max Emanuel Cencic (2018), Handel’s arias with Il Giardino Armonico ( 2015) and her acclaimed debut album Alleluia also with Il Giardino Armonico (2014), also Pergolesi Stabat Mater with Philippe Jaroussky, Diego Fasolis, I Barocchisti (2013).
Julia Lezhneva was born in 1989 as the daughter of two geophysicists on the Russian island of Sakhalin and began taking piano and singing lessons at the age of five. She graduated from the Gretchaninov Music School and continued her singing and piano studies at the Moscow Conservatory. She gained international attention at 17 when she won the Elena Obraztsova International Competition and at 18 opened the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro with Juan Diego Flórez. In 2009 she was awarded first prize at the Paris Opera Competition, becoming the youngest ever winner of the competition. The magazine “Opernwelt” named her “Young Singer of the Year” in 2011 for her debut at La Monnaie in Brussels. The following year she performed with the Victoires de la Monnaie in Brussels.
Julia Lezhneva’s teachers and mentors include Dennis O’Neill, Yvonne Kenny, Elena Obraztsova, Alberto Zedda, Richard Bonynge and Thomas Quasthoff.
Alice Lackner - Sopran 2
Alice Lackner is internationally active as an opera, concert and lied singer. She has worked closely with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra under Vladimir Jurowski and the lautten compagney under Wolfgang Katschner. She has also sung with the Konzerthausorchester Berlin, the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, the Essen Philharmonic, the Russian State Orchestra Kaliningrad, the Brandenburg State Orchestra, Ensemble 1700 (under Dorothee Oberlinger), L’Orfeo, La Banda, Concerto Theresia, Stiftsbarock Stuttgart and le buisson prospérant.
Previous engagements have taken her to the Berlin Philharmonie and the Berlin Konzerthaus, the Aalto Theatre in Essen, the Margravial Opera House in Bayreuth, the Potsdam Sanssouci Music Festival, the Berlin Music Festival, the George Enescu Festival in Bucharest, the Innsbruck Early Music Festival and the Mosel Music Festival. Various recordings for Deutschlandfunk, ARTE Concert as well as her debut CD “Ernsthaft?!” (GENUIN 2021) are proof of her artistic creativity.
Alice Lackner studied singing with Prof. Kunz-Eisenlohr at the HfMT Cologne/Aachen and is currently receiving further training from Sami Kustaloglu. She is a scholarship holder of the German National Academic Foundation and a prizewinner of “cantatebach!”, the chamber opera Schloss Rheinsberg, and of the “Podium junger Gesangssolisten”. She is also a sociologist at ZOiS Berlin.
Hugh Cutting - Altus
A former choral scholar at St John’s College, Cambridge, Hugh Cutting is a recent graduate of the Royal College of Music where he was a member of the International Opera Studio. On graduating, he was awarded the Tagore Gold Medal, presented by King Charles III. In the autumn of 2021, Hugh became the first countertenor to win the Kathleen Ferrier Award and is the first countertenor to become a BBC New Generation Artist (2022-24). In the 2021/22 season Hugh was a member of Les Arts Florissants 10th Jardin des Voix and received critical acclaim for his portrayal of Arsace in Handel’s Partenope conducted by William Christie. Further highlights included his Carnegie Hall debut singing Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Orchestra of St Luke’s and Bernard Labadie; Refugee in Dove’s Flight and Bertarido in Handel’s Rodelinda with the RCM International Opera Studio, Vivaldi’s Stabat Mater at the London Handel Festival with Adrian Butterfield; Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater with the Southbank Sinfonia; Tavener’s The Hidden Face with the City of London Sinfonia; Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment; Bach’s Geist und Seele with the Oxford Bach Soloists; Handel’s Messiah with Instruments of Time and Truth and Edward Higginbottom; Purcell Odes for a Queen with The English Concert and Kristian Bezuidenhout, and a performance of Bach and Handel arias with the Hanover Band and Laurence Cummings.
This season Hugh makes his debut at Opernhaus Zürich singing Monteverdi madrigals in Christian Spuck’s ballet setting.
Upcoming concert engagements include multiple appearances at the Wigmore Hall alongside Iestyn Davies and Ensemble Guadagni, La Nuova Musica, The English Concert, and The Sixteen; a world premiere with the BBC Philharmonic and an appearance at the Oxford Lieder Festival; Handel’s Messiah with The Sixteen and Harry Christophers and with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Adrian Lucas; Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras and John Eliot Gardiner; Bach’s B Minor Mass with The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and Vaclav Luks; Bach’s St Matthew Passion with the Finnish Radio Orchestra and Nick Collon and in a European tour with Collegium Vocale Gent and Philippe Herreweghe, as well as multiple projects with Les Arts Florissants and William Christie including Polinesso in Handel’s Ariodante and Arsace Partenope.
Song is central to Hugh’s ambition, and he seeks to expand the possibilities of countertenor repertoire in this sphere. In 2022/23 he appears in recital at the Wigmore Hall, Ryedale Festival, and at the Thames Recital Series with ‘Untethered’, a programme based on Michael A. Singer’s book ‘The Untethered Soul’, which centres around the concept of liberation, namely from the thoughts and perspectives that disturb our daily lives. Many of these works will be recorded as part of Hugh’s involvement in the BBC New Generation Artist scheme for later broadcast on Radio 3. He frequently collaborates with pianist George Ireland, lutenist Danny Murphy and composer Piers Connor Kennedy both in recital and concert.
Hugh works regularly with SoundVoice UK and composer Hannah Conway, most recently performing at Snape Maltings and King’s Place alongside Roderick Williams and Lucy Crowe in a project exploring identity and voice loss in terminal health conditions. He has recorded Purcell Royal Odes and Birthday Odes for Queen Mary with The King’s Consort and Robert King alongside Iestyn Davies and Carolyn Sampson, and Lamento with Iestyn Davies and Fretwork for Signum Classics.
Patrick Grahl - Tenor
Patrick Grahl, who was born in Leipzig, was initially a member of the Thomanerchor under Georg Christoph Biller, then received his singing training there at the Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy Music Academy with Berthold Schmid and completed his studies with the master class exam (with distinction). Master classes with Peter Schreier, Gotthold Schwarz, Gerd Türk, KS Ileana Cotrubas and Prof. Karl-Peter Kammerlander gave him important impulses for his artistic development.
While still a student he was able to master and perform roles such as Alfred (Strauß: Die Fledermaus), Tamino (Mozart: Die Zauberflöte) and Albert (Britten: Albert Herring). He has also appeared as a young servant in Richard Strauss’ Elektra, in Richard Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde as the shepherd/voice of a young sailor at the Opéra National de Lyon and as Don Ottavio (Mozart: Don Giovanni) at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice.
In 2016 the tenor won 1st prize at the XX. International Johann Sebastian Bach Competition in Leipzig. He is now a much sought-after oratorio and concert singer and has made guest appearances with orchestras such as the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Dresden Philharmonic, the NDR Radio Philharmonic, the Gürzenich Orchestra in Cologne, the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI di Torino and the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by conductors such as Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Daniele Gatti, Hartmut Haenchen, Ludwig Güttler, Ton Koopman, Andrew Manze, Leopold Hager, Omer Meir Wellber, Stefano Montanari and Hans-Christoph Rademann. He is still closely connected to the Thomanerchor and the Dresdner Kreuzchor.
There are interesting projects in the calendar: in Bucharest he sings the St. John Passion, the St. Matthew Passion in Hamburg under Jörg Endebrock and Leipzig under Andreas Reize; in Cologne Haydn’s Timpani Mass under Manfred Honeck; in Munich the Christmas Oratorio under Andreas Scholl; as well as to Stuttgart, Ludwigsburg and Vienna under Hans-Christoph Rademann and as Jaquino in Mozart’s Fidelio, a tour through Brussels, London and Paris with the Insula Orchestra under Laurence Equilbey takes him. In addition to his numerous engagements on the concert and opera stage, Patrick Grahl attaches great importance to chamber music projects and recitals. He works with pianists such as Daniel Heide and Klara Hornig, among others.
Until 2013 Patrick Grahl was a scholarship holder of the Friedrich-Ebert-Foundation, Bonn. In 2014 he won first prize in the Early Music Advancement Award from Saarland Radio and the Saarland Academy for Early Music with the Ensemble Barockwerk Ost. He was also a member of the men’s quartet Thios Omilos until 2018. Since then he has only worked as a soloist.
Christian Immler - Basso
The German baritone Christian Immler is currently one of the most sought-after singers in his field. He works with outstanding conductors, ensembles and directors both in concert and opera, and also sings Bach’s cantatas
convincing like Mahler’s orchestral songs. Christian Immler studied in his hometown Munich, in Frankfurt and as a DAAD scholarship holder at the London Guildhall School of Music & Drama with Prof. Rudolf Piernay. He also completed a musicology degree at the University of London. In 2001 he received first prize in the Nadia et Lili Boulanger competition in Paris. In the last ten years, Christian Immler has embarked on an international career that stretches from the Boston Early Music Festival to the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Suzuki’s Bach Collegium Japan and the Montréal Symphony Orchestra to Europe. Monteverdi, Bach, Handel, Mozart, Haydn and Mendelssohn are constants in his repertoire. Numerous concerts with conductors such as Harnoncourt, Minkowski, Pichon, Suzuki, Savall, Herreweghe, Fasolis, Bolton, Nagano, Conlon, Harding, Parrott,orboz, Dantone, Antonini, Christie, Christophers, Bernius, Alarcón and Rousset determine his calendar. Invitations to important festivals such as Salzburg, Aix-en-Provence, Lucerne, Vancouver, BBC Proms, Bergen and Davos followed. As a lieder singer, Christian Immler has been a guest at the Wigmore Hall in London, the Tonhalle in Zurich, the Philharmonie in Paris, the Schubertiade in Hohenems, the Mozarteum in Salzburg and the Frick Collection in New York. He was accompanied on the piano by pianists such as Helmut Deutsch, Kristian Bezuidenhout, Christoph Berner, Gerold Huber, Gérard Wyss, Georges Starobinski, Silvia Fraser and Danny Driver. Christian Immler regularly traces the joy of scenic work back to the stage of large opera houses. He is a regular guest at the Opéra Comique Paris, the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées Paris, the Grand Théâtre Geneva, the Grand Théâtre de Provence, the Opera Dijon, the Teatro la Fenice Venice, the Early Music Festival Boston and the New Israeli Opera. More than 50 award-winning recordings (Grammy nomination, Echo Klassik Award, Diapason d’Or, Diapason Découverte, Diamant d’Opéra, France Musiques Enregistrement de l’année) document his work. In the 2019/20 season he makes his role debut as Rocco in Beethoven’s Leonore conducted by René Jacobs/Freiburger Barockorchester and will appear with Laurence Equilbey and the Insula Orchestra in Weber’s Freischütz at the Rouen Opera and the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris as well as in Handel’s Acis and Galatea at the opera Massy. A tour of Europe with Masaaki Suzuki’s Bach Collegium Japan and several concerts in France with Raphael Pichon’s Ensemble Pygmalion follow. Furthermore, Christian Immler will be back with Réne Jacobs and
Akamus in Berlin and give concerts with the NHK Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo.
In addition to numerous international master classes (Fondation Royaumont/Musée d’Orsay, International Summer Academy Salzburg, University of Montreal, etc.), Christian Immler teaches singing at the Kalaidos University of Applied Sciences in Zurich.
Kooperation rocRIAS Kammerchor
Hensel-Mendelssohn, Schubert, Beethoven, Mendelssohn Bartholdy
Anna Rakitina & Behzod Abduraimov
Janáček, Prokofiev, Dvořák
Jonas Kaufmann – Waldbühnen-Concert
Leoncavallo, Puccini, Lehár, Strauß (Sohn), Erwin