The season includes major symphonic works like Scheherazade, The Rite of Spring and Don Quixote, newly created works by Joan Magrané, Bernat Vivancos and Kaija Saariaho, and revived examples of musical heritage.
Ensemble O Vos Omnes, a vocal ensemble under the direction of Xavier Pastrana, will embark on a three-year residency at L’Auditori and make a CD recording of music by Manuel Oltra on the L’Auditori record label.
The OBC will go on tour locally, visiting Reus and Lleida in February, and it will take part in L'Auditori's Rachmaninoff Festival, with performances of all the composer's piano concertos accompanied by pianist Denis Kozhuhkin.
Festival Emergents will offer audiences a marathon of chamber music, with new groups from the current music scene, and it will invite Alondra de la Parra to conduct the OBC.
The presentation of the latest work by The Divine Comedy and the Midnight Choirs concert, an initiative by Enric Montefusco, featuring Albert Pla, Maria Arnal, Niño de Elche, Nacho Vegas and The Cubero Brothers as part of the Sit Back season.
L'Auditori reaches the midpoint of its 2021-22 season, with a winter programme brimming with well-known figures from the local and international music scenes, in addition to a new edition of Festival Emergents, the Rachmaninoff Festival, a local tour by the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra , a new choral project with Ensemble O Vos Omnes and a strong commitment to promote newly created works.
Major international names will be featured, such as Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Evgeni Kissin, Janine Jansen, Nicola Benedetti, Denis Kozhukin, Teodor Currentzis and Valery Gergiev. Special mention must also be made of conductors Lina González-Granados, Stephanie Childress, Anna-Maria Helsing and Alondra de la Parra.
The winter programme will be launched by the OBC, under the baton of its new principal conductor from next season onwards, Ludovic Morlot. He will be conducting it for the first time since his appointment. The programme, featuring prestigious French pianist Pierre-Laurent Aimard, will comprise works by Schumann, Carter, Mahler and Bach , in addition to the Spanish premiere of Letters from Bachville by composer Betsy Jolas.
Kazushi Ono, who is coming to the end of his appointment as the OBC's principal conductor, will head the orchestra in a performance not to be missed: Lyric Symphony by Zemlinsky. This colossal symphony in seven movements will feature the voices of the amazing soprano, Annette Dasch, and Catalan baritone, Josep Ramon Olivé. The OBC, with 10 programmes of music and 22 different concerts this winter, will also perform key works from its repertoire, such as Scheherazade by Rimsky-Korsakov, The Rite of Spring by Stravinsky and Don Quixote by Strauss.
A special mention must be made of the Rachmaninoff Festival, headed by the OBC. It will feature virtuoso pianist Denis Kozhukhin, who is set to perform Rachmaninoff's four piano concertos over two weekends . Kozhukhin is one of the season's star attractions, since, over the course of eleven days, audiences will be able to see him performing Rachmaninoff's concertos and also taking part in a chamber music concert with violinist Janine Jansen on the stage of Hall 1, Pau Casals.
During this period, the OBC will also give concerts outside L’Auditori. It will go on a local tour, with a concert at Teatre Fortuny in Reus and another at Enric Granados Municipal Auditorium in Lleida. On both occasions, the concerts will feature violinist Sergei Dogadin and conductor Stephanie Childress.
On 19 February, the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra will be performing at the Palau de la Música Catalana with soprano Núria Rial, paying tribute to one of today's great composers, Kaija Saariaho, at the world premiere of Cinc Pregàries (Five Prayers) by Bernat Vivancos.
Kaija Saariaho and another much acclaimed figure, Betsy Jolas, are just two of the long list of composers whose work will be performed during L’Auditori's winter season, together with Carlota Baldrís, Marie Jaëll, Lili Boulanger, Pauline Viardot, Clara Schumann, Tebogo Monnakgotla, Francesca Caccini, Lotta Wennäkoski, Sofia Gubaidulinaand Jane Vignery.
In addition to the OBC, three leading international orchestras will also appear on stage at L’Auditori during the winter season. They are the Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra, the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, and the Stuttgart SWR Symphony Orchestra. They will be accompanied by their principal conductors, Valery Gergiev, Andrés Orozco-Estrada and Teodor Currentzis, performing at three concerts co-produced by L’Auditori and Ibercamera.
The Barcelona Symphony Band, musical heritage and a new choral project
2022 is the centenary of the birth of Manuel Oltra, an event that L'Auditori will celebrate with a concert and recording of his choral music. This will mark the beginning of a three-year residency by Ensemble O Vos Omnes, headed by Xavier Pastrana. This season, in addition to the Oltra project, the ensemble's activities during its residency will also include the premiere of a choral symphony work by Joan Magrané (the season's guest composer) with the OBC, and The Plague, by Robert Gerhard.
The residency by Ensemble O Vos Omnes will herald a new chapter for choral music at L’Auditori, allowing audiences in forthcoming seasons to enjoy concerts by groups that are currently making a name for themselves, with close links with the region, such as Cantoria, with an undeniably solid reputation, Cor Francesc Valls, Capella Reial de Catalunya and the choirs of the Palau de la Música Catalana.
In the field of Catalan music, other major works will be performed by composers such as Juli Garreta, Salvador Brotons, Joan Lamote de Grignon, Eduard Toldrà and Joaquim Serra. There will also be numerous premieres and concerts of recently composed works by composers such as Benet Casablancas in a performance with the OBC (Canti ed Estasi di Lea, based on the opera Enigma di Lea), Bernat Vivancos in performances with the Barcelona Symphony Band (Organis Aurea) and the OBC and Núria Rial (Cinc pregàries), and Joan Magrané (Obreda).
The Barcelona Symphony Band will give nine concerts between January and March, with one special highlight being the presence of conductor and composer Philip Sparke, a major international name in band music. Sparke will conduct the world premiere of his work Hymn at Twilight, commissioned by the Barcelona Symphony Band, at a monographic concert dedicated to his music under the baton of the celebrated maestro.
Among the projects by the Barcelona Symphony Band, mention must be made of an extraordinary concert featuring Pep Butifarra as part of the Tradicionarius Festival, and a performance of Don Juan by Strauss in an arrangement by Joan Lamote de Grignon. This is a version that was performed by the band in 1925 in Frankfurt, at Strauss's invitation, and L'Auditori still conserves a copy of the handwritten score with Strauss' own signature on it.
Música Antiga, Festival Emergents and Música Cambra
In the area of Música Antiga (early music), a performance of theopera Amadigi di Gaula by Handel must be highlighted, featuring singers Xavier Sabata and Núria Rial and conductor Dani Espasa heading the ensemble Vespres d’Arnadí.
Festival Emergents will be returning for yet another year, introducing audiences to young local and international talent. Over the course of four days, 15 concerts will be staged, bringing together over one hundred musicians. This year, it will feature a special event: a chamber music marathon lasting for nine hours, made up of seven free concerts in Hall 2, Oriol Martorell. Furthermore, at Festival Emergents, Mexican conductor Alondra de la Parra will step onto the podium as the OBC's guest conductor.
As announced earlier, L'Auditori's Música de Cambra season will include a programme featuring pianist Denis Kohukhin and violinist Janine Jansen, with works by Beethoven, Schubert and Brahms. Audiences will also be able to enjoy major works for trio by Schumann and Brahms, performed by a piano trio led by violinist Nicola Benedetti. Lastly, the return to L'Auditori of legendary Russian pianist Evgeny Kissin must be highlighted, with a concert in Hall 1, Pau Casals, co-produced by BCM Clàssics.
Modern music, the Sampler Sèries, Escenes and the Educational Project
In thefield of modern music, as part of the Sit Back season, members of the public will be able to enjoy a concert by The Divine Comedy, the band headed by Neil Hannon. In a co-production with Cruïlla, the band will present its latest work at L'Auditori and celebrate its 30th anniversary.
Another event not to be missed is Coros de Medianoche (Midnight Choirs) by Enric Montefusco, a show that will unite Albert Pla, Maria Arnal, Niño de Elche, Nacho Vegas and The Cubero Brothers.
During the winter season, L'Auditori will launch two new series of concerts: the Sampler Sèries and Escenes. The Sampler Sèries will featurethree of the best-known improvisers on the Barcelona music scene: saxophonist Marcel·lí Bayer, guitarist and composer Ferran Fages and drummer Oriol Roca. A tribute will also be paid to Stockhausen , with a concert that will bring Ensemble Ascolta, one of Stuttgart's leading ensembles, to L'Auditori for the second time.
The first project of the Escenes programme will also take place, entitled Demoledora (Devastating). This will unite director and media writer Sara Serrano, actor and creator David Climent (loscorderos.sc), musician and performer Adriano Galante (Seward) and architect and designer Alessia Schoor in critical reflections on the problem of gentrification and the indignity of current residential models in big cities.
Another new project by L’Auditori to be staged in forthcoming months is the show Tuttu fan piu from the Educational Project, an educational project for schools and families inspired by bird sounds and melodies under the musical direction of Marta Roma and stage direction of Montse Roig. The show Ullsclucs will also return. Created as part of the Educational Project launched last season, it revisits the musical heritage of the Obra del Cançoner de Catalunya (1921-1936) with arrangements by Arnau Obiols.
The Museu de la Música pays tribute to Gerhard in the foyer of L'Auditori
In March, the Museu de la Música will make its own contribution to Gerhard Year, with the exhibition Tot escoltant Gerhard. This concludes the tribute to composer Robert Gerhard to mark the 50th anniversary of his death. The exhibition, organised by the Catalonia Regional Ministry of Culture, offers an instructive insight into the life, work and personality of the Valls-born composer on thirty panels featuring information and images related to his music and life. The exhibition will be on display in the foyer of L'Auditori's Hall 1, coinciding with the performance of The Plague.
Aleix Palau | 16 December 2021
L’Auditori presents its winter programme, with a new choral project and the return of Ludovic Morlot, the OBC's new principal conductor as of next season
Some seventy concerts featuring great names such as Evgeny Kissin, Xavier Sabata, Janine Jansen, Teodor Currentzis, Núria Rial, Valery Gergiev, Matthias Pintscher, Nicola Benedetti, Ian Bostridge and Philip Sparke.