Orchestral Touring Highlights
The last six months have seen orchestras and projects on tour under the auspices of Intermusica in far-flung and unusual parts of the world. Athens, an ancient city, also has one of the most outstanding modern concert halls in Europe and an exciting programme of orchestral concerts. As part of Intermusica’s ongoing relationship with the Megaron, two concerts were given in November by the NDR Symphony Orchestra, Hamburg, conducted by Claus Peter Flor. Capacity audiences heard a programme which included Shostakovich’s Tenth Symphony and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto with soloist Leonidas Kavakos. Future collaborations with the hall include a focus on the Greek composer Nikos Skalkottas and visits by the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the Russian National Orchestra.

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra visited Spain in the New Year giving a special concert in Santiago di Compostela to launch the 2000 ‘millennial’ year in the City. Conducted by Matthias Bamert, the programme included Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.2 Little Russian and a selection of Mozart arias performed by Amanda Roocroft. The RPO will return to Spain this summer, again under our management, giving two concerts at the San Sebastian Festival with Daniele Gatti. In May 2001 the Orchestra will then have a major tour of Spain and Portugal including Madrid (two concerts at the Auditorio Nacional), Valencia and Lisbon.

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Matthias Bamert was also the conductor for an extensive tour given in Japan by the London Mozart Players. This is Bamert’s final season as Music Director of the Orchestra and this third visit to Japan was a great success. Nine concerts were given, including Sapporo, Osaka and Tokyo, and capacity audiences were present in many cities. The tour also included a special concert in Fukui arranged by the Orchestra’s Patron HRH Prince Edward. Other chamber orchestras were also touring in Europe, including visits to Spain by the City of London Sinfonia, Switzerland by the Academy of Ancient Music and a first visit to Germany by the Britten Sinfonia (including concerts in Frankfurt’s Alte Oper and Munich’s Gasteig).

In celebration of the Weill centenary in 2000, we arranged a short but prestigious tour by HK Gruber and the London Sinfonietta in March which included concerts at the Cité de la Musique in Paris, Brussels and Dessau. Clio Gould, the Sinfonietta’s leader, was soloist in the Weill Violin Concerto.

Finally the Philharmonia Orchestra visited Dublin and Manchester under our auspices with concert programmes conducted by Leonard Slatkin and featuring mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade hot-foot from her performances at the Met in The Merry Widow. Slatkin and the Philharmonia will be giving concerts together again in June at the Istanbul International Music Festival, their first visit to this major festival, with Leonidas Kavakos as soloist in Beethoven’s Violin Concerto and including a concert in Izmir.

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