European Tour: Berlin

On September 11, the Bayerisches Staatsorchester will perform in Berlin and, among other compositions, will let Alban Berg’s Violin Concerto be heard. This composer has a special relationship with today’s German capital. In 1923, his Three Orchestral Pieces were premiered here, and the world premiere of his opera Wozzeck followed in 1925 under Erich Kleiber, then general music director of the Berlin State Opera. The extreme challenges of this score necessitated 137 rehearsals leading up to the premiere. But the city also represents a crucial setting in the biography of Richard Strauss, whose Alpine Symphony will be heard at the Berlin concert: After Strauss saw no possibility of being hired as a general music director in his hometown of Munich, he went to the Berlin Hofoper in 1898. The composer later recalled that he “never had any reason to regret this relationship with Berlin; actually experienced only joy, found much sympathy and hospitality.” He remained in the city for more than two decades, and it was under his direction that the premiere of the Alpine Symphony took place here in 1915 – the Dresden Royal Court Orchestra (today’s Staatskapelle) played.

Photo credit: F. E. C. Leuckart Verlag 1915