Brahms, Hölderlin, and Schiller

So glad to appear in a choral-symphonic concert again next Sunday, 22 January, performing Brahms’s Schicksalslied, Op. 54, and Nänie, Op. 82, with Vokalsystem Berlin, Enchore, and Berliner Sibelius Orchester, alongside orchestral music by Verdi and Sibelius. This will also be the conducting debut of my dear colleague Johannes David Wolff in the Grand Hall of the Berlin Philharmonie. There are still some tickets left—I’d be delighted to see you there!

Spellbinding Silvestrov

It’s been such a pleasure to be an inconspicuous part of the audience and watch Valentin Silvestrov listen to his own pieces being performed on stage. This experience made me feel a proximity of both physical and spiritual nature, a certain unity with the music and its creator, while submerging in that continuous stream of sound, largely devoid of contours and contrasts, which seemed that it might go on eternally. Thank you, Viktoriia Vitrenko, Alexei Lubimov, and Pianosalon Christophori for making this happen just two miles from my place!

DTKV Federal Delegate Assembly

Here is a short report from this year’s federal delegate conference of Deutscher Tonkünstlerverband, held on 5 November 2022 and hosted by DTKV Bremen. Confidently chaired by Christian Höppner, the event took place in a collegial and basically productive atmosphere. However, the most important professional topic of the last month, fee standards and fair payment of freelance musicians, was not allowed enough time on the agenda, and the corresponding press release had not been sufficiently coordinated with the DTKV state associations. The delegates and board agreed to schedule another assembly day for the next year in order to enhance content-related discussions. Due to opposed communicative attitudes of the board and some of the state associations, the exchange prior to the conference had been unfavourably unilateral, which meant that the delegates needed to deal with formal and financial issues more than necessary. In addition, it became apparent in some of the ballots that there is still much opposition towards changes and innovations within the association.

Besides the indispensable revision of its structures and communication policy, it would seem desirable that the Tonkünstlerverband developed strategies for a sustainable and member-oriented representation of interests. These should result in significantly increased and professionalised public relations work as well. The new website of the federal association shows some promising approaches in that regard.

GMTH Conference in Salzburg

Tomorrow I will be off to Universität Mozarteum Salzburg again for this year’s conference of the Gesellschaft für Musiktheorie. Not going to present an individual paper this time (which feels sort of comfortable), but looking forward to chairing a session, to leading a professional development workshop together with my colleague Sigrun Heinzelmann, and to lots of encounters and fascinating exchanges of thoughts with peers, audiences, and my colleagues on the board. Hope to see you there! #gmth2022 #musictheory

Scriabin Conference in Reading

Happy to be participating in the Scriabin @ 150 conference and celebration, taking place the following weekend at Queen Anne’s School, Caversham, Reading, UK. Alongside an illustrious line-up of scholars and musicians sharing their thoughts, interpretations, and approaches towards Scriabin’s music, I will contribute my bit on the relationship and latent intercommunities between Scriabin and his Muscovite contemporary Nikolai Medtner. Thank you, Kenneth Smith, Marina Frolova-Walker, and everybody else involved, for making this happen!

NB. I am super excited about this event for two particular reasons:
  • It is the prime candidate for the Sexiest Conference of the Year award.
  • It is probably the only conference that offers a free DIY Scriabin facemask for downloading, printing, and colouring (according to the composer’s synaesthetic preferences, I would suggest).