Book your holiday in Hamburg! With the opening of the Elbphilharmonie, the world has a magnificent new concert hall and the line-up from resident and visiting artists is spectacular.
The ‘heart’ of the Elbphilharmonie will be the 2,150 seat Great Hall with the smaller 500 seat hall available for chamber music. Not abashed to espouse ‘classical’ and with music as its firm focus, the Elbphilharmonie, will, according to the Hamburg Tourism website, be a home for “Classical music culture, music of the 21st century and sophisticated light music.”
The magnificent glass structure which took 8 1/2 years to build, is located on a peninsula of the Elbe river, atop a renovated warehouse buiding and cost nearly 800 million Euros. However, it is one of the largest and most acoustically advanced concert halls in the world with no seat more than 30m from the stage and a 4 manual Klais pipe organ.
The inaugural concert on January 11 featured the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra conducted by Thomas Hengelbrock performing an eclectic programme of music by Britten, Praetorius, Messiaen, Wagner, Caccini and of course, the last movement from Beethoven’s Symphony No 9. Soloists included Sir Bryn Terfel, Philippe Jaroussky (whom we heard with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra in 2013) and Pavol Breslik (who sang the role of Nadir in Opera Australia’s 2016 production of The Pearlfishers), standing in for Jonas Kaufmann. Read the review of the opening concert in the New York Times.
The resident NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra will give regular concerts and visiting artists performing there soon include Mitsuko Uchida, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Riccardo Muti, the Arditti Quartet as well as Gospel and Jazz programmes.