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5 November 2022 @ 20:00

Three masterpieces of "absolute music" that do not tell a "programme" and yet appear highly exciting and emotional: in them pain, conflict, grief as well as the longing for reconciliation are expressed. Each work represents a cosmos of its own, particularly evident in the case of Friedrich Cerha, who spreads out a soundscape on over 300 percussion instruments. The energetic young exceptional virtuoso Vivi Vassileva is the soloist in this perhaps most beautiful and at the same time most demanding percussion concerto ever written.

"Where are you going?" At the beginning of his Sinfonietta, Zemlinsky circles around a motif based on this line of poetry by Maurice Maeterlinck. He wrote the work shortly before emigrating to America, where he died just four years later. All three composers on our program were highly successful, decorated with awards and also celebrated as conductors - and yet had to deal with formative experiences of exclusion and persecution throughout their lives.

The concert will also take place on 6/11/2022, 8PM at the Philharmonie Berlin.


Friedrich Cerha (*1926)
Concerto for percussion and orchestra (2008)

Witold Lutosławski (1913-1994)
Mi-parti (1976)

Alexander von Zemlinsky (1871-1942)
Sinfonietta for orchestra op. 23 (1934)


Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra (NOSPR)
Vivi Vassileva, percussion
Titus Engel, conductor




Vivi Vassileva


Vivi Vassileva discovered percussion on a beach in Bulgaria. At the age of 13 she won a first prize in the national competition "Jugend Musiziert". She studied with Martin Grubinger, earned international prizes, including 2 special prizes at the 63rd ARD competition for her outstanding performance as the youngest semifinalist. Performances as a soloist with orchestras and her own ensembles followed. With her own compositions for percussion she won the 1st prize in the 2016 competition of the Kulturkreis Gasteig. In the fall of 2017 Vivi Vassileva was awarded the Bavarian Art Promotion Prize. In March 2019, she made her debut with her percussion quartet at the Berlin Philharmonie. The composer Oriol Cruixent wrote the concerto for percussion and orchestra "Oraculum" for her, the world premiere took place in April 2019 in Wuppertal. In February 2022 she performed the world premiere of the concerto for percussion and orchestra "Recycling Concerto" by G. A. Mayrhofer with the Württ. Philharmonie Reutlingen under Alexander Liebreich. In Dortmund, Vivi Vassileva performs the world premiere of her commissioned work by Claas Krause with the Extasi-Ensemble dpie in 2022. In 20/21 and 21/22 she will be presented as a "Great Talent" at the Konzerthaus Wien and will make her debut at the Philharmonie Essen in 2022. From the season 21/22 she was invited for the "Junge Wilden" at the Konzerthaus Dortmund.



Titus Engel


Titus Engel is one of the production's greatest assets, a polyglot Pultmann who thinks his way into Lehár as well as Shostakovich or Schoenberg and actually conducts the mix of styles as such. Münchner Merkur, December 2021

Titus Engel was named Conductor of the Year by Opernwelt magazine in 2020. With his comprehensive view of repertoire from a wide range of epochs, he always understands works in their multifaceted relationality. Respected for his expertise in the field of historical performance practice as well as for his precise conducting of complex contemporary projects, the Berlin-born Zurich native can also be seen regularly performing central works of opera literature - for example, he thrilled audiences with Lohengrin at the Tiroler Festspiele Erl in 2021. Always ready to break new ground in his exploration of scenic concepts on the podium, he sees music theatre as an experimental field in which social utopias can flourish.




The NOSPR was founded in Warsaw in 1935 by Grzegorz Fitelberg, who led it until the outbreak of World War II. In 1945 the orchestra was revived in Katowice by Witold Rowicki. In 1947 the post of artistic director was again taken over by Grzegorz Fitelberg. After his death (1953), the orchestra was led by Jan Krenz, Bohdan Wodiczko, Kazimierz Kord, Tadeusz Strugała, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Stanisław Wisłocki, Jacek Kaspszyk, Antoni Wit, Gabriel Chmura and again Jacek Kaspszyk. In September 2000, Joanna Wnuk-Nazarowa became the general and program director of NOSPR. From 2012 to August 2019, Alexander Liebreich served as NOSPR's principal conductor and artistic director. In September 2018, Ewa Bogusz-Moore took office as NOSPR's general and program director. In September 2019, Maestro Lawrence Foster was appointed Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of NOSPR.




November 5, 2022
Event categories:


Elbphilharmonie - Great Hall
Hamburg, Germany

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