8. Symphony Concert

Omer Meir Wellber Conductor
Airam Hernández Tenor
Midori Violin
Emily Dorn Soprano
Daniel Johannsen Tenor
Martin-Jan Nijhof Bass
State Opera Chorus Dresden

Ariel Ramírez

  • »Misa Criolla«

Leonard Bernstein

  • Serenade after Plato's »Symposion« for Violin, Strings and Percussion

Franz Schubert

  • Mass in G major, D. 167

Forms of inspiration

In his »Symposium«, Plato noted that »harmony is agreement, and agreement is unity« – an inspiring notion that corresponds to a universal form of love. In his Serenade from 1953, Bernstein takes inspiration from statements on beauty in Plato’s Dialogues. In Ariel Ramírez’s »Misa Criolla« from 1964, the composer draws on basic impulses from his homeland of Argentina. And the Mass in G major can be seen as a personal confession of the 18-year-old Schubert.

Expected running time incl. intermission: 110 min.

  • 25.03.2018
    20:00 Uhr
    Semperoper
    Ticket price:
    45.00 – 82.00 €
  • 26.03.2018
    20:00 Uhr
    Semperoper
    Ticket price:
    23.00 – 82.00 €

Omer Meir Wellber

Omer Meir Wellber has established himself as one of today’s leading conductors of operatic and orchestral repertoire alike. In September 2018 he begins his tenure as Principal Conductor at the Semperoper Dresden. In July 2019 he will take up the position of Chief Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and from January 2020 the position of Music Director of the Teatro Massimo in Palermo. He has directed some of the world’s most prestigious ensembles, such as the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre National de Lyon, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Staatskapelle Dresden, RAI Torino and Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich. His combination of energy and clarity and his ability to evoke nuanced detail from an orchestra have made him a regular guest conductor at the Bavarian State Opera Munich, La Fenice in Venice, and the Israeli Opera.

In season 2018/19 Omer Meir Wellber gives his debut at the Metropolitan Opera in New York with Bizet’s Carmen in October 2018 and shortly before at the Lucerne Festival with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

For the first time he stands at the rostrum of NDR

Elbphilharmonie Orchestra in the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg and conducts concerts with Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, among others at the Bachfest Leipzig in June 2019. As Principal Guest Conductor of the Semperoper Dresden he not only conducts the new production of Verdi’s Nabucco in May 2019, but also revival performances of Don Giovanni, Tannhäuser, Der Rosenkavalier and a symphonic concert with the Staatskapelle Dresden.

Omer Meir Wellber served as the Music Director at the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia in Valencia from 2010 to 2014, leading both orchestral and operatic performances.

From 2008 to 2010, he assisted Daniel Barenboim at both the Berliner Staatsoper Unter den Linden and Milan’s Teatro alla Scala, whose ensemble he led in a critically-hailed performance of Verdi’s Aida at the Israeli Opera.

2016, he led the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra during its residency at the Dresdner Music Festival. Since 2009, he has been the Music Director of the Raanana Symphonette Orchestra, founded in 1991 to assist Jewish immigrants with their integration in Israel.

Airam Hernández

Airam Hernández has quickly become one of the most promising young tenors of his generation. The uniqueness of his timbre and his highly developed musicality has given him a place of honor between the rising stars in the opera world ever since the recent start of his career

In 2017 he will debut the roles of Edgardo in »Lucia de Lammermoor« at the Opéra de Lausanne, conducted by Maestro Jesús López Cobos; Belmonte from Mozart’s »Die Entführung aus dem Serail« at Teatro de San Carlo di Napoli, in Giorgio Strehler’s legendary staging; and Faust in Gounod’s homonymous masterpiece at Opera de Tenerife.

Airam received his initial musical training as a french horn player for twelve years in the Conservatory of Santa Cruz de Tenerife mentored by Maestro Guillermo Zarzo. Lately he finished his formal vocal studies with Maestra Dolors Aldea in Barcelona. 
 

He has worked with prestigious conductors such as Fabio Luisi, Stéphane Denève, Marco Armiliato, Michael Boder, Cornelius Meister, Markus Poschner, Alexander Anissimov, Sebastian Weigle, John Fiore, Ivor Bolton, Carlo Rizzi, James Conlon, Teodor Currentzis and Nello Santi, among others.

Airam has had an outstanding participation in numerous vocal competitions, being a finalist at International Singing Competition »Francisco Viñas« in Barcelona and Semifinalist at Plácido Domingo’s Operalia Competition in Los Angeles. He also won First Prize and Higher Score Prize at International Singing Competition of Logroño and the Second Prize at International Singing Competition »Josep Mirabent i Magrans« in Sitges.
 

Midori

Today Midori is worldwide recognized as an extraordinary performer, a devoted and gifted educator, and an innovative community engagement activist. In recognition of the breadth and quality of her work in these three entirely separate fields, in 2012 she was given the prestigious Crystal Award by the World Economic Forum in Davos, was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, and was awarded an honorary doctorate in music by Yale University. In 2007, she was named a Messenger of Peace by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. In essence, over the years she has created a new model for young artists who seek to balance the joys and demands of a performing career at the highest level with a hands-on investment in the power of music to change lives.

 Midori was born in Osaka, Japan in 1971 and began studying the violin with her mother, Setsu Goto, at a very early age. Zubin Mehta first heard Midori play in 1982, and it was he who invited her to make her now legendary debut - at the age of 11 - at the New York Philharmonic's traditional New Year's Eve concert, on which occasion she received a standing ovation and the impetus to begin a major career. Today Midori lives in Los Angeles. Her violin is the 1734 Guarnerius del Gesu »ex-Huberman«. She uses three bows - two by Dominique Peccatte, and one by Paul Siefried.

Emily Dorn

The young soprano Emily Dorn studied at the McGill University and at Mannes College. She won several awards like the 1st prize of the New England Region Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the 2nd prize of the Gerda Lissner and Giulio Gari International Voice Competitions. In 2013 she starred in a concert performance of »Roméo et Juliette« at Lyric Opera Virginia as well as Violetta in »La traviata« in Williamsburg / Virginia. In the season 2011/12 she gave her debut as Goundo's Juliette at Palm Beach Opera and as Violetta at Lyric Opera Virginia. She performed in »Rienzi« with the Opera Orchestra New York, took over the role of Phaedra in the premiere of Chistopher Park's Opera »Phaedra and Hippolytus« at Palácio das Artes in Brazil and sang the role of Echo in »Ariadne auf Naxos« at Tanglewood Music Center under the baton of Christoph von Dohnányi. Her repertoire includes roles like Alice Ford (»Falstaff«), Adina (»L’elisir d’amore«), Blanche de la Force (»Dialogues des Carmélites«), Nella (»Gianni Schicchi«), Clarissa (»Die drei Pintos«) as well as the title role of »Die lustige Witwe«.

In the season 2012/13 she joined the young ensemble of the Semperoper Dresden and since 2015/16 she is a full member of the ensemble. Here she already sang roles like Gretel (»Hänsel und Gretel«), Adele (»Die Fledermaus«), Fiordiligi (»Così fan tutte«), Violetta (»La traviata«), Micaëla (»Carmen«), Najade (»Ariadne auf Naxos«), Musetta (»La bohème«), Prinzessin (»Der Teufel mit den drei goldenen Haaren«), Baronin Freimann (»Der Wildschütz«), Regina (»Mathis der Maler«), Bubikopf (»Der Kaiser von Atlantis«) and Prinzessin (»Die Prinzessin auf der Erbse«). In the season 2014/15 she sang the role of Susanna in the new production of »Le nozze di Figaro«. The new Dresden production was brought to the prestigious Savonlinna Opera Festival in July 2015. In 2016/17 she also performed the roles of Pamina (»Die Zauberflöte«) and Katja in »Die Passagierin« in Dresden. In the current season 2017/18 Emily Dorn will perform many of the mentioned roles as well as in the new production of »Les Troyens« on the stage of the Semperoper.

Daniel Johannsen

The Austrian tenor Daniel Johannsen (born in 1978) is among the most demanded evangelists and Bach singers of his generation. He studied vocal arts with Margit Klaushofer and Lied interpretation with Robert Holl in Vienna, where he also graduated in church music; Dietrich Fischer Dieskau, Nicolai Gedda and Christa Ludwig chose him for master classes. He is prize winner at numerous competitions. 

Since his debut in 1998, appearances as a concert, lieder and opera singer have taken him to the major musical centres of Europe, North America, Japan and the Middle East, where he sings works from every period. In addition to regular concerts at the Vienna Musikverein and Konzerthaus, he appears at leading festivals (Styriarte Festival in Graz, Salzburg Festival, Carinthian Summer, Israel Festival, La Folle Journée, International Herrenchiemsee Festival, several international Bach festivals). He performs under such distinguished conductors as Sir Neville Marriner, Bertrand de Billy, Jordi Savall and Enoch zu Guttenberg.
 

Song recitals featuring the entire range of German repertoire, in addition to English and French compositions, are a central focus in the work of the singer, who collaborates with such pianists as Simon Bucher, David Lutz, Burkhard Kehring and Helmut Deutsch. Daniel Johannsen’s recording of the »Dichterliebe« was released in spring of 2010, following his first solo CD, »Tenore & Traverso« with arias by Johann Sebastian Bach, which received the ORF Pasticcio Award. In addition, numerous other recordings, radio and television broadcasts document his creative output.

Martin-Jan Nijhof

The bass-baritone Martin-Jan Nijhof was born in Ravenstein in The Netherlands. He studied at the Conservatory of Music in Maastricht in the south of The Netherlands, where he received lessons by Barbara Schlick.

For his postgraduate studies he went to the University of Music in the German city of Freiburg. There he received further vocal education by Reginaldo Pinheiro. Currently Martin-Jan Nijhof prepares his opera roles with the famous vocalist bass Jaakko Ryhänen from Finland. Nijhof made his debut as Leporello in »Don Giovanni« at the Südostbayerische Städtetheater in Passau (Germany) in 2003. For this performance he was nominated as best junior artist in the operamagazine Opernwelt.

Since August 2016 Martin-Jan Nijhof has been a lead member of the cast at the Semperoper Dresden. In this opera house he sings roles such as Don Alfonso (»Così fan tutte«), Colline (»La Bohème«), Masetto (»Don Giovanni«), Publio (»La Clemenza di Tito«) and Angelotti (»Tosca«). 

As a guest vocalist he made some great performances all over Germany. Some recent appearances were as Don Giovanni n Mönchengladbach, Il Conte in Mainz and also Colline during the live-broadcast on German national television for the NDR-Klassik Open Air in Hannover conducted by Keri Lynn Wilson.

His large oratorio and classical song repertoire includes works of Bach, Rossini, Händel, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Schubert and Vaughan Williams. One of the highlights was the performance of the »Kindertotenlieder« of Mahler with the Magdeburgische Philharmonie, conducted by Stefan Lano.

State Opera Chorus Dresden

Had it not been for Carl Maria von Weber, Dresden’s opera chorus would not have been founded, or at least not on October 8, 1817. It was Weber who obtained royal approval for this initiative; after all, it was his artistic mission (and personal ambition) to establish a German opera company alongside the tradition-steeped Italian opera. Besides suggesting other reforms for the staging of opera, he argued that it was now essential to have a regular choir. The choir started to participate in the traditional Palm Sunday concerts as early as 1827. Major landmarks in its history include the performances in 1846, 1847 and 1849 of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony under the later Kapellmeister Richard Wagner, who was forced to flee Dresden shortly after the last-mentioned performance.

Currently comprising 89 singers, the Dresden State Opera Chorus has now become one of Europe’s finest opera choruses and has been acclaimed as such in virtually every premiere review in recent years. This preservation of tradition, coupled with a growing awareness of quality, is indebted to such artists as Joseph Metzner, Wilhelm Fischer, Karl Maria Pembaur, Ernst Hintze, Gerhart Wüstner, Franz Peter Müller-Sybel, Hans-Dieter Pflüger, Matthias Brauer and Pablo Assante, who have led the choir through difficult times to the present day. The Dresden State Opera Chorus is currently directed by Jörn Hinnerk Andresen, who since assuming his post in 2014 has maintained and developed such qualities as tonal coherence, refinement and reliably consistent precision.

The State Opera Chorus of today has to a significant degree been shaped by its collaboration with the conductor Giuseppe Sinopoli, who died far too early and dedicated much time and effort to developing the choir’s artistic potential. Nowadays, the choir frequently demonstrates its qualities in operatic productions and concert performances. Radio, television and CD recordings bear further testimony to the immense prowess on account of which the State Opera Chorus is much sought after in many places besides Dresden: the choir receives invitations to perform at festivals, on tours and in concerts and has since 2013 worked together with the Staatskapelle Dresden at the Salzburg Easter Festival, which has been directed by Christian Thielemann ever since. October 8, 2017 marks the 200th anniversary of the founding of the Dresden State Opera Chorus.