Visiting orchestras / Carl Nielsen
Mahler Chamber Orchestra
- Duration 1h 45, one interval
The Mahler Chamber Orchestra’s “Sinfonia Semplice” performance launches the Carl Nielsen portrait involving six concerts, which the Musikfest Berlin has organized to commemorate the 150th anniversary the great Danish composer’s birthday. Nielsen named this work “Sinfonia Semplice”, and in doing added fuel to speculations of an underlying programme. Indeed, he “based his compositions on the character of the instruments and attempted to portray the instruments as independent personalities.” At first, his contemporaries reacted skeptically to the work, which was viewed as modernist. Today this symphony has grown increasingly popular. Composer Hans Abrahamsen has contributed to this by taking the innovative chamber orchestral approach of the work a step further.
Also on the MCO’s progamme is Alban Berg’s “Kammerkonzert” (Chamber Concert) for piano and violin with 13 winds, which was written almost simultaneously, and which he viewed as a homage to the Viennese School. In it, Berg connected the chamber musical tradition of motivic thematic work with the aspect of giving a concert in which not only the piano and the violin but also the winds – also part of the performance - are included.
On the same evening, an exhibition featuring the life and oeuvre of Carl Nielsen will be opened in the foyer of the Philharmonie before the start of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra concert.
Carl Nielsen [1865–1931]
Symphony No. 6 Sinfonia Semplice [1924/25]
arranged for chamber orchestra by Hans Abrahamsen 
Alban Berg [1885–1935]
for piano and violin with 13 wind instruments [1923–1925]