Kurt Masur and the Orchestre National de France Begin Tour of European Festivals

Classic Arts News   Kurt Masur and the Orchestre National de France Begin Tour of European Festivals
Last week the Orchestre National de France ended its summer vacation early, as its players gathered in Paris under music director Kurt Masur to prepare for a late-summer tour of European festivals.

That tour begins tomorrow night at the Lucerne Festival, with Schubert's Seventh Symphony, Tchaikovsky's Sixth, and Mahler's Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen with baritone Roman Trekel.

Masur and the ONF then proceed to Spain for four concerts: two on Wednesday and Thursday (August 23-24) at the Festival Internacional de Santander and two more at the Quincena Musical de San Sebastišn on August 26-27.

Next, on August 29, the Orchestre National de France makes its very first appearance at the BBC Promenade Concerts, with Shostakovich's Symphony No. 7 and the London premiere of Hans Werner Henze's Five Messages for the Queen of Sheba.

The ONF then visits three cities in Masur's native Germany: Wiesbaden, for the Rheingau Music Festival (August 31); L‹beck, for the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival (September 1); and Ludwigsburg for its Music Festival (September 2).

The tour ends not far from where it began — in Switzerland, at the Montreux Festival on September 4.

The programming will be mix-and-match from a pool of works. Among them, in addition to the Henze score, the Mahler song cycle and the Schubert, Mahler and Tchaikovsky symphonies above, are Schubert's Eighth Symphony (the "Unfinished"), Mahler's First, Dvoršk's Ninth ("From the New World"), Strauss's Horn Concerto, and Henri Dutilleux's song cycle Correspondances with soprano Dawn Upshaw.

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