Nordic - Concert of the HfMDK Symphony Orchestra


On May 4, 2024, the HfMDK Symphony Orchestra will perform the concert program "Nordic" at 7.30 pm in the Great Hall of the university. Michael Sanderling, who took over as musical director of the ensemble in the fall of 2023, will be conducting. He has selected three Scandinavian works for the evening at the HfMDK: Edvard Grieg's "Morning Mood" and Jean Sibelius' Symphony No. 2 in D major will frame Carl Nielsen's Clarinet Concerto with Portuguese soloist Daniela Pinho. She is a master's student in the clarinet class of Prof. Laura Ruiz Ferreres and qualified for the solo part via an audition.

»After a very enjoyable first collaboration with the students of the HfMDK symphony orchestra last semester, I am now looking forward to exploring the very special musical language of the north with these wonderful and eager musicians. A dark, earthy, sometimes heavy-blooded color is paired with vastness, longing, confidence and devotion in the music.«Prof. Michael Sanderling

The "Morning Mood" comes from the last part of Grieg's incidental music to Henrik Ibsen's "Peer Gynt". The Norwegian composer later made the four-minute piece the opening movement of his Peer Gynt Suite No. 1, which was to bring him and the delicate melody gliding along in waves to worldwide fame.

The clarinet concerto by the Dane Carl Nielsen is one of the most important clarinet compositions of the 20th century. The orchestration includes only two bassoons, two horns, percussion and strings in order to highlight the solo woodwind instrument. The solo part is challenging, with fast figures, large leaps and notes that are complicated to grasp. Bold interjections from the snare drum can be heard time and again.

In his Symphony No. 2, the Finn Sibelius formed a four-movement work lasting 45 minutes from a motivic nucleus of three ascending notes, which contains typical characteristics of his music, such as abrupt changes of mood, passages bursting with pathos, but also moments of Nordic brusqueness. Whether the finale really captures the energetic Finnish striving for independence from Russia cannot be definitively proven, but it is undisputed that the sounds speak of strength, confidence and hope.

The symphony orchestra of the Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts (HfMDK) is primarily made up of students from the Bachelor's and Master's degree courses in Artistic Music Studies (KAM) with an orchestral instrument as their main subject and comes together several times a semester for musical projects. The ensemble performs in changing line-ups to enable as many students as possible to take part. Working in a large ensemble helps them to prepare for a professional future in a symphony or opera orchestra.

Michael Sanderling has been Chief Conductor of the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra since the 2021/2022 season, having previously held the position of Chief Conductor of the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra from 2011 to 2019. Guest engagements have taken him to the Berlin Philharmonic, WDR Symphony Orchestra, SWR Symphony Orchestra, Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Concertgebouworkest Amsterdam, Orchestre de Paris, NHK Symphony Orchestra and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, among others. He works particularly closely with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the Konzerthausorchester Berlin. He began his musical career as principal cellist of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and then the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra before focusing on conducting. As a passionate supporter of the young generation of musicians, he has been teaching at the HfMDK Frankfurt since 1998 and regularly works with renowned German youth orchestras. He took over the musical direction of the HfMDK Symphony Orchestra in the winter semester 2023/2024.

Clarinettist Daniela Pinho comes from Portugal and completed her Bachelor's degree at the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra. She has taken part in masterclasses with various clarinettists, including Tomaz Močilnik (hr-Sinfonieorchester), Romain Guyot (international soloist), Andraz Golob (Berliner Philharmoniker) and Eric Hoeprich (historical instrument). The winner of several competitions, she regularly works with orchestras in her home country, including the Orquestra Filarmonia das Beiras, the Orquestra Metropolitana de Lisboa and the Orquestra Académica Filarmónica Portuguesa. Daniela Pinho is currently studying for a Master's degree in Artistic Education in Music at the HfMDK in the class of Prof. Laura Ruiz Ferreres.

The HfMDK is a cultural partner of the radio station hr2 Kultur.


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Dirigent Michael Sanderling

Michael Sanderling

Foto: Laura Brichta

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