Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the Boston Symphony Orchestra enter into a new alliance

The freshly annouced strategic alliance between the Gewandhausorchester and the Boston Symphony opens a new window of globalization in the arts.

Gewandhaus Leipzig, Germany

Gewandhaus Leipzig, Germany

Historically, a long standing tradition unites the Gewandhausorchester and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. These mutual ties are now intensified with Andris Nelsons’ appointment as Gewandhauskapellmeister from the 2017/18 season.
The history of close cultural connections between Leipzig and Boston began in 1881, when the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s (BSO) founder, Henry Lee Higginson, appointed Leipzig Conservatory-trained Georg Henschel as its first conductor. Subsequent conductors of the BSO, including Wilhelm Gericke, Emil Pauer, Max Fiedler, Karl Muck, and most importantly, Arthur Nikisch, were all educated in Leipzig and also held posts with the Gewandhausorchester (GWO). From the middle of the twentieth century, the connection was reinforced when Charles Münch became the Music Director of the BSO in 1949, remaining in the position until 1962. Münch was also educated in Leipzig and had been Concertmaster of the Gewandhausorchester from 1926 to 1933. In addition, Boston’s Symphony Hall (1900) presents a structure inspired by the second Gewandhaus.
Based on this historic bond, and under the leadership of Andris Nelsons, Mark Volpe, Managing Director of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and Gewandhausdirektor Andreas Schulz are planning a unique multi-dimensional partnership to explore and share the heritage and strengths of both ensembles.

Various aspects of this cooperation include:

Co-commissions and Educational Initiatives
The BSO/GWO Alliance, under the leadership of Andris Nelsons, will feature a series of co-commissions, with new works presented each year of the partnership, starting with a work by German composer Jörg Widmann to be presented in Boston and Leipzig in the 2017-18 concert season. Several European and American composers, representing a diversity of styles and generations, will also be commissioned for performance by both ensembles. The Alliance will also focus on some key educational initiatives including a program that will give Conducting Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center (BSO’s acclaimed summer music academy at its summer home in western Massachusetts) an opportunity to assist Andris Nelsons with his work with the Gewandhausorchester. BSO musicians will also take part in the GWO’s music education programs.

Programming Highlighting Each Orchestra’s Musical Heritage
During the 2017-2018 subscription season, the BSO will celebrate “Leipzig Week in Boston” at Symphony Hall and the GWO will celebrate “Boston Week in Leipzig” at the Gewandhaus, giving each orchestra an opportunity to focus on some of the repertory for which their partner organization is best known. Since its founding in 1743, the GWO has been associated with some of the greatest figures of music history, having given the premiere of works by Beethoven, Schumann, Mendelssohn, and Brahms; this tradition continued into the 20th century with scores by such significant composers as Henze, Kanscheli, and Rihm, among others. The BSO’s own compositional legacy is, likewise, without parallel, including some of the seminal scores of the last century from composers ranging from Stravinsky, Prokofiev, and Bartok, to Messiaen, and Dutilleux and a myriad of Americans including, Copland, Bernstein, Sessions, Carter, and Harbison, among others. The BSO/GWO Alliance will provide an opportunity for each orchestra to program a selection of works by composers particularly associated with each of these great orchestras; this programming strand will also be highlighted in chamber music performances, lectures, panel discussions, and exhibits, with the goal of inspiring a new understanding of this great repertoire.

BSO Performing at Gewandhaus and GWO Peforming at Symphony Hall
One of the most exciting components of the Alliance will be a chance for the BSO to perform at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig and the GWO to perform at Symphony Hall in Boston, giving each orchestra’s audience a chance to appreciate this new partnership first hand. The BSO/GWO Alliance will also explore musician exchanges between the two orchestras.
This segment of the cooperation will begin on May 5, 2016, when the Boston Symphony Orchestra will give its premiere guest performance in the Gewandhaus.

Christoph Wolff, Artistic Advisor
Christoph Wolff, Adams University Professor at Harvard University, Director of the Bach Archive from
2001 to 2013 in Leipzig, and author of numerous acclaimed texts on the history of music from the 15th and 20th centuries, will serve as an artistic advisor to the BSO/GWO Alliance (please see bio below). Further details about the programs of the BSO/GWO Alliance will be announced at a later date.

Quote by Andris Nelsons
“I am thrilled to accept the appointment of Gewandhauskapellmeister alongside my music directorship with the remarkable Boston Symphony Orchestra,” said Andris Nelsons. “It is also an immense privilege to be partnering these two world class institutions—each with their own deeply rich musical heritage — and to be leading them in an innovative and forward-thinking alliance spanning two continents. This wonderful new alliance between the BSO and GWO will give us a unique opportunity to explore each of these orchestra’s great music traditions, as well as create exciting and meaningful new experiences for our audiences at home and around the world. We are very much looking forward to the musical journey that lies ahead.”

@ClassicalNEXT Calls for Programme Proposals for 2016

The classical music meeting and worldwide innovators network Classical:NEXT has opened its annual call for proposals. Classical music professionals from all over the globe can submit their suggestions for showcase artists as well as for video presentations and conference sessions to be held at Classical:NEXT in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 25-28 May 2016.


To offer an exceptional programme, Classical:NEXT assembles a handpicked selection of artists, speakers and projects each year. All proposals will be considered by an independent jury of international experts – guaranteeing a neutral and balanced selection of only the best showcases and most pressing conference topics for Classical:NEXT 2016 at Rotterdams de Doelen concert hall and congress centre. Proposals can be made for Live Showcases and Video Showcases as well as for short Project Pitches and entire Conference Sessions.

Deadline to apply via the online proposal system is Friday, 25 September 2015.

Building on the Classical:NEXT Momentum
Hundreds of proposals are expected again, with the numbers being likely to rise, given that this May’s Classical:NEXT meeting was attended by a record number of 1,000 professionals from 45 countries. The entire Classical:NEXT network now unites over 2,000 international movers, shakers and everyday innovators from all sectors of the classical music business and 2015 sees an increased attention in the live sector as well as in the media.

For more information and to submit proposals, please visit:

Revolution for Streaming of Classical Music on the way!? [@idagio_official]

Classical music shall be accessible for everybody. The new platform IDAGIO offers an easy-to-use service for performers and audiences which could be a revolution for the distribution of classical music. Watch IDAGIO Founder Till Janczukowicz introduce IDAGIO for iOS at the Salzburg Festival, and discuss the future of classical music with Andreas Großbauer, Franz Welser-Möst and Ray Chen.

IDAGIO - the revolution of streaming classical music!?

IDAGIO – the revolution for streaming classical music!?

In the coming months, the new platform IDAGIO will gradually roll out features that will allow musicians to upload their recordings and build a global audience of classical music lovers.  If you are a musician or institution and want to be among the first to have access to these features, you should consider joining the IFAGIO mailing list or get in touch directly via

Already some of the most renowned musicians and orchestras (Vienna Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester, Ray Chen, Thomas Hampson, Franz Welser-Möst) already joining IDAGIO as launch partners.

Find the whole presentation at:

Gaining profile! Orchestras semi-autonomous and happy?

Orchestras in Germany (and elsewhere in the world) integrated into a multi-section house or opera house often have a low profile, their contribution barely noticed by audiences and underplayed within the institutional marketing mix. It is the semi-autonomous ensembles that have the freedom to create their own artistic programme and identity – which in turn can become a valuable complement to the activities of a theatre or opera house.

BOBAt the same time brand building is possible even within the limitations of a multi-section house: small concert series, outreach programmes and a clearly defined online presence on the institution’s homepage can all contribute to a much stronger profile. For example the Erzgebirgische Philharmonie Aue is a case study for a small theatre orchestra with a strong, regionally rooted identity. Grown from a merger of two ensembles – one a theatre orchestra, the other a concert orchestra – they have combined their respective strengths to become a key player in the cultural life of the region. By contrast, the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn is strongly resisting calls to be integrated into the municipal theatre, for whose opera programme it currently functions as a semi-autonomous “service provider”. This relative independence is important – both for the ensemble’s cultural profile, but also to protect it from the political fallout of ongoing budget quarrels.

The Staatskapelle Weimar is another example for – in this case, far-reaching – semi-autonomy: part of the Deutsches Nationaltheater und Staatskapelle Weimar plc, its labour committee even has a say in the ensemble’s controlling and is thus able to influence programming and touring. While the added responsibility requires considerable extra effort, it also adds greatly to flexibility. Perhaps the opposite end is represented by the Sinfonieorchester Wuppertal. While the past decade under Toshiyuki Kamioka was artistically very fruitful, the ensemble – doing both opera and concert “service” – has a somewhat indistinct profile. This is partly due to staff issues, but also comes down to details such as a hard-to-find webpage

YEAH! Festival 2015: June 16 to 20 in Osnabrück (Germany) @jungeohren

On 16th to 20th June 2015, YEAH! Festival will turn the city into a colourful marketplace of current music productions from all over Europe for the Osnabrück audience and its guests. And the new date in early summer is not the only novelty: for the first time, YEAH! will have its own temporary venue in a big tent on the cathedral square.

Yeah! Award 2015 - Innovation in Music Presentation

Yeah! Award 2015 – Innovation in Music Presentation

The festival will also be supported by strong local partners such as the Theater Osnabrück, the Musik- und Kunstschule Osnabrück, the Music Institute of the FH Osnabrück and Fokus e.V. as well as the Osnabrück Marketing und Tourismus GmbH.

The YEAH! festival has established itself as a lively platform for professional exchange in the education and outreach scene. The YEAH! festival is not only a platform for artists that address today’s and tommorrow’s audience with their work; it also gives new impulses to European dialogue with its exchange meetings and conferences. All nominated projects will be invited to present themselves at the project exchange meeting. All applicants and guests are very welcome to take part in the festival, get inspired and come together to develop musical formats and topics and to think ahead.

The YEAH! Young EARopean Award is a project of the Stiftung Stahlwerk Georgsmarienhütte (Georgsmarienhütte Steelworks Foundation) and the netzwerk junge ohren (network young ears).

Download Festivalflyer

Buenos Aires opens new Concert Hall

For a long time things didn’t run well in Argentina. And there are still many issues waiting to be improved, especially in the arts sector. Teatro Colón for example is suffering from severe mismanagement.

However, on May 21st 2015 a new arts centre (including a 1750-seat-concert hall) has been open in the more-than-refurbished former Main Post Office, downtown Buenos Aires (“Centro Cultural Kirchner“). Old architecture is combined with cutting-edge technical equipment. Acoustics are reported to be superb. One mustn’t agree with the Kirchner regime in political questions at all, but this new building seems to be an outstanding and interesting new hot spot for the National Symphony Orchestra as well as for internationally touring orchestras.

Watch the government “propaganda” video, which at least offers a good impressions of the new venue and the whole project:

Seminar: Promoting Opera via Film and Internet (Prague, 2-3 October 2015)

IMZ’s (International Music & Media Center, Vienna, Austria) objective is to promote performing arts in audio-visual media and to foster the production and distribution of excellent art films all over the world. The quality of the programmes is important for a sustainable future the industry. IMZ Academy has the intention to offer everybody in the market the opportunity to learn from each other and to share best practice as well as lessons learned.



At International Television Festival Golden Prague

2 – 3 October 2015 · Prague · Czech Republic

IMZ’s (International Music & Media Center, Vienna, Austria) objective is to promote performing arts in audio-visual media and to foster the production and distribution of excellent art films all over the world. The quality of the programmes is important for a sustainable future the industry. IMZ Academy has the intention to offer everybody in the market the opportunity to learn from each other and to share best practice as well as lessons learned.

The IMZ Academy offers a series of highly practical workshops and seminars examining best practice in performance capture, the latest technologies in capture, streaming and editing, editorial curation, how to reach audiences, as well as business or financial models.

This year’s edition is focussing on opera covering all aspects of the visualisation of the art form: From performance capture – whether for television, cinema or online – to the contextualisation of performance and performers through factual content, archive and documentation.

Sessions include inter alia:

  • Storytelling in a digital environment
  • Deciding who your audience is and how you reach them
  • Broadcast streaming infrastructure in-house or not
  • Multi-camera performance capture
  • Low cost capture and editing technology
  • Live-streaming technologies
  • Editorial content beyond performance
  • Activating your artistic and editorial community


The sessions will be led by IMZ Academy director Peter Maniura (Head of Digital Development, BBC), with guest speakers giving the inside track on all the latest developments and technologies in the field including new digital platforms. The IMZ Academy is limited to 10-20 participants to ensure that every participant is fully involved during the practical sessions and gets detailed feedback on his or her learning process.


Pre-Registration is already open and the number of participants limited. We will accept applications following the motto first come, first serve.

Early Bird Rate (until 1 September 2015 + IMZ members) EUR 590,-*, Regular Rate EUR 690,-*

*plus tax


For any questions, further information and registration, contact:

Astrid Hafner-Auinger · · +43 1 889 0315 18


About the IMZ

The IMZ is a platform of 150 members / 1.500 individuals of the international cultural film community, dedicated to the creation and promotion of performing arts films. Music and dance on screen: Our diverse activities help producers, distributors, broadcasters, orchestras, opera houses, dance companies and many more to connect worldwide and foster business opportunities. Find out more about the IMZ membership!