Symphony Concert N° 8

Manfred Honeck Conductor
Nikola Hillebrand Soprano
Marie Henriette Reinhold Alto
Sebastian Kohlhepp Tenor
Mikhail Timoshenko Bass
Ulrich Tukur Narrator
Dresdner Kammerchor

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

  • Overture to »La clemenza di Tito«, K. 621

Joseph Haydn

  • Symphony in D major, Hob. I:93

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

  • »Masonic Funeral Music« in c minor, K. 477
  • »Laudate Dominum« from »Vesperae solennes de Confessore«, K. 339
  • Requiem in d minor, K. 626
  • Motet »Ave verum corpus« in D major, K. 618

Funeral music

Manfred Honeck returns to the rostrum of the Staatskapelle with a special programme. The spotlight is on the composer’s unfinished sacred magnum opus, the Requiem in D minor. This famous work is accompanied by other highlights from his religious oeuvre as well as the »Masonic Funeral Music«, which the Freemason Mozart wrote in 1785 in memory of two lodge brothers. Manfred Honeck will examine all these works through a musical-literary lens. The audience can enjoy Ulrich Tukur reciting poems by Nobel laureate Nelly Sachs, while the performance of Gregorian chorales will highlight the long tradition of sacred vocal music.

Information on advanced ticket sale will be announced in autumn 2021.

  • 10.04.2022
    20:00 Uhr
    Semperoper
  • 11.04.2022
    20:00 Uhr
    Semperoper

Manfred Honeck

Renowned for his distinctive interpretations, Manfred Honeck has served as Music Director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since the 2008/2009 season. The 2017/2018 season will mark 10 years of this acclaimed partnership and in honour of the occasion in Pittsburgh, three of the programmes throughout the year will feature a special commission to commemorate this decade of successful music-making. Consistently recognized for their performances, he and the orchestra are celebrated both in Pittsburgh and abroad and regularly perform in major music capitals and festivals, among them the BBC Proms, Musikfest Berlin, Lucerne Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival, Beethovenfest Bonn, Grafenegg Festival, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra have also built a close relationship with the Musikverein in Vienna. Following a week-long residency in 2012, they returned for three performances in the course of an extensive tour of Europe in spring 2016. Their next tour, in summer 2017, took them again to Europe’s most prestigious music festivals, including the BBC Proms, Lucerne Festival and Salzburg Festival.

Manfred Honeck's successful work with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been extensively documented on recordings with the Reference and Exton labels. All SACDs released by Reference Recordings, amongst them Strauss tone poems and suites, Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4, Beethoven Symphonies No. 5 and 7, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6  have received numerous rave reviews and honours. After two Grammy nominations for Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8 and the Symphonic Suite from Janáček's opera Jenůfa, conceptualized by the artist himself, as well as for Bruckner’s Fourth, the most recent recording, Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5, won the Grammy for "Best Orchestral Performance" in January 2018.

Born in Austria, Manfred Honeck received his musical training at the Academy of Music in Vienna. Many years of experience as a member of the viola section in the Vienna Philharmonic and Vienna State Opera Orchestra have given his conducting a distinctive stamp. He began his career as assistant to Claudio Abbado and as artistic leader of the Vienna Jeunesse Orchestra. Subsequently, he was engaged by the Zurich Opera House, where he was bestowed the prestigious European Conductor’s Award in 1993. Other early posts include Leipzig, where he was one of three main conductors of the MDR Symphony Orchestra and Oslo,

where he assumed the post of Music Director at the Norwegian National Opera on short notice for a year and was engaged as Principal Guest Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra for several years. From 2000 to 2006 he was Music Director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm and, from 2008 to 2011 and again from 2013 to 2016, Principal Guest Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

From 2007 to 2011, Manfred Honeck was Music Director of the Staatsoper Stuttgart where he conducted premieres including Berlioz's Les Troyens, Mozart's Idomeneo, Verdi's Aida, Richard Strauss's Rosenkavalier, Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmélites and Wagner's Lohengrin and Parsifal, as well as numerous symphonic concerts. His operatic guest appearances include Semperoper Dresden, Komische Oper Berlin, Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, Royal Opera of Copenhagen, the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg and the Salzburg Festival. Moreover, he has been Artistic Director of the International Concerts Wolfegg in Germany for more than twenty years.

As a guest conductor Manfred Honeck has worked with the world’s leading orchestras including the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Staatskapelle Dresden, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Accademia di Santa Cecilia Rome and the Vienna Philharmonic. Orchestras he conducted in the United States include New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra and San Francisco Symphony. He is also a regular guest at the Verbier Festival. Highlights of his recent and upcoming guest engagements in the 2017-2018 season include the New Year’s concert of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Munich Philharmonic and Vienna Symphony. He also continues his regular collaboration with the New York Philharmonic, Bamberg Symphony, and Accademia di Santa Cecilia.

Manfred Honeck has received honorary doctorates from several North American universities. Most recently, he was awarded the honorary title of Professor by the Austrian Federal President. The expert jury of the International Classical Music Awards selected him as "Artist of the Year" 2018.

Nikola Hillebrand

The German soprano Nikola Hillebrand was born in Recklinghausen, in the heart of North West Germany. She performs regularly throughout Germany and the rest of Europe and this season will be part of the resident ensemble of National theatre Mannheim. In July 2017, Nikola made her debut at Bavarian State Opera as she jumped in as Azema in the run of Rossini’s »Semiramide« during the Opernfestspiele. Nikola began her studies aged 17 at the Hochschule for Music and Theatre, under the guidance of Professor Fenna Kügel-Seifried. During her studies in Munich, Nikola made her professional debut as Belinda in »Dido & Aeneas« at Theater Bonn and went on to play Papagena and Queen of the Night (»Die Zauberflöte«) as well as Marzelline in a new production of »Fidelio«. In the summer of 2015, she made her debut at Glyndebourne as Blondchen in David McVicars new production of »Entführung aus dem Serail«. Nikola was invited to return to Glyndebourne the following season, playing the role of Barbarina and covering the role of Susanna in »Le Nozze di Figaro«. She became the 50th recipient of the John Christie Award in her debut season with Glyndebourne. This is awarded in conjunction with the Worshipful Company of Musicians to a young singer who has shown exceptional promise through their work during the season.

As part of Nationaltheater Mannheim's ensemble 2016/17, Nikola has gone on to play the roles of Adele (»Die Fledermaus«), Oscar (»Un ballo in Maschera«) and Despina (»Così fan tutte«). Her roles in the upcoming season in Mannheim include Queen of the night as well as her role debuts as Sophie (»Rosenkavalier«) and Poppea (»L´incoronazione di Poppea«). Nikola feels equally at home on the concert platform. Her recent concert repertory includes; Handel’s Messiah, Mozart’s Exultate Jubilate, Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater and Orff’s Carmina Burana. Amongst all the vocal disciplines, art song holds a special place in Nikolas heart. She enjoys paralleling the finesse and delicacy required for song interpretation alongside the extravagance and flamboyance of many of the characters she interprets on the stage. The composers of R. Strauss, Schumann, Schubert, Mozart, and Debussy can be found frequently in her recital programs.

Sebastian Kohlhepp

German tenor Sebastian Kohlhepp is one of the most widely hailed singers of his generation, much in demand on the international opera and concert scene. He achieved outstanding success in his acclaimed début as David in Wagner’s Meistersinger under the baton of Christian Thielemann at the Salzburg Easter Festival in 2019, and he took up the same role in early 2020 at the Semper Opera House in Dresden, thrilling the audience and the press. Sebastian Kohlhepp was born in Limburg, where he received his initial musical training at the local boys’ choir. After his studies with Hedwig Fassbender in Frankfurt he was successively engaged as a member of the ensembles in Karlsruhe, Vienna, and Stuttgart. He has been freelancing since the 2017/18 season. In recent years, Kohlhepp has been making himself a name as a well-versed Mozart tenor. He has sung Tamino at the Theater an der Wien (under René Jacobs), at Basel Theatre, and at the Vienna Volksoper; he gave his début as Belmonte at the Salzburg Mozart Week, covered the role of Don Ottavio in Cologne, and recently sang the role of Ferrando in Così fan tutte (under Ivor Bolton) at Dutch National Opera Amsterdam. In the 2020/21 season, Kohlhepp will return as Tamino in a new staging of The Magic Flute at the Semper Opera House in Dresden. Sebastian Kohlhepp is likewise much in international demand as a concert soloist. In the summer of 2018 he gave his Salzburg Festival début appearance in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony conducted by Teodor Currentzis. In December of the same year, the Boston Symphony Orchestra and their chief conductor Andris Nelsons invited him to perform in the United States. To roll in the year 2020, he was featured live on German television (ZDF) in a concert version of Lehár’s The Land of Smiles in the traditional New Year’s Eve performance with the Staatskapelle Dresden conducted by Christian Thielemann.

. Kohlhepp makes regular appearances with renowned orchestras and ensembles, including the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, the RIAS Chamber Choir (Berlin). Collegium Vocale Gent, Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, the NDR Choir (Hamburg), the Gürzenich Orchestra (Cologne), Gaechinger Cantorey (Stuttgart), and the Stuttgart Chamber Choir. He collaborates with eminent conductors such as Philipp Ahmann, Sylvain Cambreling, Pablo Heras-Casado, Adam Fischer, Alexander Liebreich, François-Xavier Roth, Christophe Rousset, Andreas Spering, and Lorenzo Viotti. He has been invited to perform in major venues such as the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, the Philharmonic Halls in Paris, Berlin, and Cologne, the Konzerthaus in Vienna, the Tonhalle in Zurich, the Laeiszhalle in Hamburg, Shanghai Concert Hall, Seoul Arts Center, Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, the Rheingau and Schleswig-Holstein Music Festivals, and the Menuhin Festival in Gstaad. A great number of CD, DVD and radio broadcast recordings put Sebastian Kohlhepp’s multifarious talents on display. René Jacobs’s recording of Bach’s St John Passion (Harmonia Mundi), with Kohlhepp as aria tenor received the 2017 ICMA Award in the Baroque vocal category. Two of Kohlhepp’s most recent releases include Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis under Frieder Bernius for the Carus label, and a live recording of Carl Maria von Weber’s early opera Peter Schmoll with Vienna RSO for Capriccio.

Mikhail Timoshenko

Born in Russia, he began his musical and theatrical training in Mednogorsk at the singing class of Tatiana Mayorova and then honed his craft at the University of Musik Franz Liszt Weimar and the University of Music Hans Eisler Berlin under the tutelege of Dr. Prof. Michail Lanskoi. From 2015 to 2017, he was a member of the Academy of the Opéra National de Paris and starred in the behindthescenes look at the Paris Opera Documentary film by Jean-Stéphane Bron ''L'Opéra''. He performed in numerous concerts in the Amphithéâtre concert hall of the Bastille Opera. He sang in the world premiere of Joanna Lee’s Vol Retour and performed the role of Pluton (Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo). He has sung Spencer Coyle (Owen Wingrave), Hymas and Tirtée (Les Fêtes d’Hébé) in Paris and in London, Erster Handwerksbursch (Wozzeck), Silvano (Un Ballo in Maschera), Mitioukha (Boris Godunov) on the main stage of Bastille Opera. In 2016, he won the First Prize at the International Singing Competition Bordeaux Médoc, the Cercle Carpeaux Lyric Prize, the AROP Prize (Opéra national de Paris), the Siemens Opera Contest First Prize. In 2017, he won the International Maria Callas Grand Prix in Greece. In 2018, in Duo with the pianist Elitsa Desseva, he was awarded the First Prize at the International Chamber Music Competition »Franz Schubert and Modern Music« in Graz, the First Prize at the Hugo Wolf Academy International Art Song Competition in Stuttgart, the Second Prize and Public Prize at the International Schubert LiedDuo Competition in Dortmund and in 2019 the Third Prize and the Yamaha Audience Prize at the »International Chamber Music Competition« in Lyon and First Prize at the »Wigmore Hall/Independant Opera Song Competition« in London.

Operatic highlights of his firsts professional seasons include the world premiere of the chamber opera En Silence (by Alexandre Desplat) in Luxembourg and Paris- Bouffes du Nord, Orlik in Tchaikovsky’s Mazeppa at the Ópera de Oviedo (Spain), Moser in I Masnadieri at the Ópera Monte Carlo, Pietro in Simon Boccanegra at the Paris Opéra Bastille, Masetto in Don Giovanni at Paris Opéra Garnier and Opernhaus Düsseldorf, Figaro in Le Nozze di Figaro Opéra national de Lorraine à Nancy. Philanthropy is a topic close to Mikhails heart. Since 2009 he gives charity concerts for children with mental disorders in Russia and takes part in several fundraising events organised by the »Yehudi Menuhin Live Musik Now e.V.«' in Germany. In a cooperation with the autonomous non-profit organisation »Touch«' in Orenburg he supports several boarding-schools for mentally handicapped children.

Dresdner Kammerchor

The Dresdner Kammerchor is one of the leading choirs in Germany. Since its foundation in 1985 by Hans-Christoph Rademann it has become firmly established on the German and European musical scene. With initiatives such as the first complete recording of Heinrich Schütz (since 2009) and a continuing interest in researching and promoting the musical legacy of central Germany, the choir helps shape the cultural identity of this region, working internationally as an ambassador for Dresden and Saxony. In collaboration with the Dresdner Barockorchester and other musical partners, numerous works have been rediscovered, performed and recorded. Recordings of works by Heinrich Schütz, Johann Adolf Hasse, Johann David Heinichen and Jan Dismas Zelenka have been honored with numerous prizes including the German Record Critics’ Award of the Year 2016. Alongside the oratories and sacred works of Baroque masters such as Bach, Telemann and Händel, the choral-symphonic repertoire of the Classical and Romantic periods from Mozart via Mendelssohn to Brahms forms another main focus of the choir’s work. The Dresdner Kammerchor is also renowned for the performance of challenging a cappella literature from the 19th and 20th centuries by composers such as Max Reger, Alfred Schnittke, Ernst Krenek, Olivier Messiaen and Herman Berlinski. The choir specializes in modern and contemporary music. This is reflected in numerous premieres, first performances, and new works commissioned by the choir. In 2009 Hans-Christoph Rademann and the Dresdner Kammerchor initiated the first Dresdner Chorwerkstatt für Neue Musik (Dresden Choir Workshop for Contemporary Music), which had its fourth edition in 2018. The choir was awarded the Ernst von Siemens Music Prize for its services to contemporary music. The Dresdner Kammerchor has received broad acclaim on its numerous concert trips in and outside Europe, i.e. USA, South Africa, India, China, Taiwan and Mexico.

The choir also receives regular invitations to international music festivals of great reputation like the Rheingau Musik Festival, Oude-Muziek-Festival Utrecht, Festivales Musicales Buenos Aires, Bachwoche Ansbach and Händelfestspiele Halle and Göttingen. Frequent cooperations with renowned orchestras and conductors from Germany and abroad underscore the reputation of the choir. Among the most famous are the conductors René Jacobs, Sir Roger Norrington, Ádám Fischer, Riccardo Chailly, Herbert Blomstedtm, Jos van Immerseel and the ensembles Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, The Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Concerto Köln, Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin and Anima Eterna Brugge. The Dresdner Kammerchor stays in touch with its roots trough a cooperation with the "Carl Maria von Weber" College of Music Dresden.