- Faustine de Monés Soprano
- Thomas Atkins Tenor
Coro Gulbenkian was founded in 1964 by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation as a full symphonic body of around 100 singers. The choir joins the Orquestra Gulbenkian and other orchestras to perform Classical, Romantic and Contemporary choral-symphonic repertoire, but can also perform a cappella. It has performed – and often premiered – many 20th century works by Portuguese and international composers.
Coro Gulbenkian has been invited to collaborate with major international orchestras, under the direction of conductors such as Claudio Abbado, Colin Davis, John Nelson, Emmanuel Krivine, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Frans Brüggen, Franz Welser-Möst, Gerd Albrecht, Michael Gielen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Rafael Frübeck de Burgos, René Jacobs and Leonard Slatkin, among others.
Besides its regular season of concerts in Lisbon and frequent national tours, Coro Gulbenkian has repeatedly toured Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Japan, Macao, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom, the United States of America and Uruguay.
Coro Gulbenkian has recorded extensively for Philips, Deutsche Grammophon, Erato, Cascavelle, Musifrance, as well as FNAC-Music, performing a wide range of repertoire, from Early-Renaissance polyphony to Xenakis. Several of these albums received international awards.
In 1962, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation decided to establish a permanent orchestral ensemble. Originally with only twelve musicians (strings and continuo) it was named “Orquestra de Câmara Gulbenkian”. This collective was successively enlarged and today the “Orquestra Gulbenkian” (the name it has adopted since 1971) has a permanent body of sixty instrumentalists, a number that can be expanded depending on the repertoire.
This structure allows the Gulbenkian Orchestra to interpret works from the Baroque and Classical periods, a significant part of 19th century orchestral literature and much of the music of the 20th century, including works belonging to the current repertoire of the traditional symphonic orchestras. In each season, the orchestra performs on a regular series of concerts at the Gulbenkian Grand Auditorium in Lisbon, where it has had the opportunity of working together with some of leading names of the world of music (conductors and soloists). It has also performed on numerous locations all over Portugal, in an effort to decentralize music and culture.
The orchestra has been constantly expanding its activities in the international level, performing in Europe, Asia Africa, and the Americas. In the recording field, Orquestra Gulbenkian is associated to labels as Philips, Deutsche Grammophon, Hyperion, Teldec, Erato, Adès, Nimbus, Lyrinx, Naïve and Pentatone, among others, and this activity was recognized with several international prizes.
“Dynamic and sharp on the podium” (Bachtrack) and with a “scrupulous ear for instrumental color and blend” (Washington Post), Hannu Lintu maintains his reputation as one of the world’s finest conductors. This season, Lintu takes up the baton as Music Director of Orquestra Gulbenkian whilst continuing his tenure as Chief Conductor of Finnish National Opera and Ballet, proving himself a master of both symphonic and operatic repertoire. The appointments follow a stream of successful concerts with Orquestra Gulbenkian and breathtaking productions with Finnish National Opera and Ballet including Strauss’s Salome, Puccini’s Turandot and Britten’s Billy Budd. This season will see the completion of the house’s Ring Cycle with Wagner’s Götterdämmerung as well as productions of Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmelites and Mozart’s Don Giovanni.
Highlights of the 2023/24 season include debuts with Berliner Philharmoniker, NHK Symphony Orchestra and SWR Symphonieorchester, and returns to Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Minnesota Orchestra, Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI and George Enescu International Festival.
Recent years have seen Lintu conduct New York Philharmonic (concluding with an immediate re-invitation from the orchestra to perform at Bravo! Vail Festival), Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre National de Radio France, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Konzerthaus Berlin, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne and Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, alongside the likes of Gil Shaham, Kirill Gerstein, Daniil Trifonov and Sergei Babayan.
Lintu has made several recordings for Ondine, BIS Records, Naxos, Avie Records and Hyperion Records. His diverse discography comprises recordings of Magnus Lindberg’s orchestral works, the complete Beethoven Piano Concertos with Stephen Hough, and Lutoslawski’s Symphonies Nos. 1-4, all with Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. His often-gilded work boasts two International Classical Music Awards and several nominations for Gramophone and GRAMMY awards in recognition of recording projects such as Bartók’s Violin Concertos with Christian Tetzlaff, works by Sibelius featuring Anne Sofie von Otter, Rautavaara’s Kaivos, and the Violin Concertos of Sibelius and Thomas Adès with Augustin Hadelich and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.
Lintu studied cello and piano at the Sibelius Academy, where he also later studied conducting with Jorma Panula. He participated in masterclasses with Myung-Whun Chung at L’Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy, and took first prize at the Nordic Conducting Competition in Bergen in 1994.
Soprano Chen Reiss has established a strongly-acclaimed and distinctive career, enchanting audiences with “one of the most perfect Strauss voices one could wish for” (Classical Source), “a voice of silver brightness and clarity” (Bachtrack) with “immaculately produced and enticing tone matched by superb musicianship” (Opera News, USA).
Born in Israel, she came to prominence as a member of the ensemble of the Bavarian State Opera under the music directorship of Zubin Mehta, and has for a number of years been a resident artist at the Vienna State Opera. She has also performed leading parts at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, Teatro alla Scala, Semperoper Dresden, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Hamburg State Opera, Netherlands Opera, Wiener Festwochen, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Opera Company of Philadelphia and the Israeli Opera.
In 2018 she made her debut at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden as Zerlina in Kasper Holten's production of Don Giovanni conducted by Marc Minkowski, and her debut at Teatro Real in Madrid and Gran Teatre del Liceu Barcelona as Ginevra (Ariodante) under William Christie, a role she also performed at the Vienna State Opera in David McVicar's new production. In 2017 she performed in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 at the BBC Proms, Lucerne Festival, George Enescu Festival and at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam under the baton of Daniele Gatti, made her debuts with the Chicago Symphony under Charles Dutoit, the Philharmonia Orchestra under Lahav Shani and sang Liu (Turandot) with the Israel Philharmonic orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta, and in 2016 she sang Morgana (Alcina) under Marc Minkowski at the Vienna State Opera, and with the Vienna Philharmonic under the baton of Zubin Mehta, she was the guest soloist at a gala concert for the 30th anniversary celebrations of Tokyo’s Suntory Hall.
She is a frequent presence on the concert stage, and a regular guest with distinguished ensembles and institutions including the Salzburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Ludwigsburg, Rheingau and Lucerne Festivals, the Vienna Philharmonic, Staatskapelle Berlin, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Concerto Köln, Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de France, Pittsburgh Symphony and Dallas Symphony, and London’s Philharmonia and BBC Symphony Orchestras, as well as in Carnegie Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein, Wigmore Hall, Philharmonie Berlin, Tonhalle Düsseldorf, Laeiszhalle Hamburg and Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. She counts among her collaborators such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Christoph Eschenbach, Daniel Harding, Manfred Honeck, Marek Janowski, Paavo Järvi, Zubin Mehta, Mark Minkowski, Donald Runnicles, Christian Thielemann and Franz Welser-Möst.
Highlights of this season and beyond include her debuts as Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro) and Aennchen (Der Freischutz) at the Vienna State Opera, where she also will return in signature roles including Zdenka (Arabella), Marzelline (Fidelio) and Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier), performances of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Munich Philharmonic and on tour across Europe under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel, Haydn’s The Seasons with the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra under Vladimir Jurowski, the solo roles of Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 in the opening season concerts of the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Bernstein’s Symphony No. 3 ‘Kaddish’ with the Israel Philharmonic and Ilan Volkov.
Her operatic repertoire includes: Gilda (Rigoletto), Adina (L’elisir d’amore), Amina (La Sonnambula), Nannetta (Falstaff), Oscar (Un ballo in maschera), Marie (La fille du régiment), Rosina (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Pamina (Die Zauberflöte), Ilia (Idomeneo), Servilia (La clemenza di Tito), Konstanze (Die Entfuehrung aus dem Serail), Gretel (Hansel und Gretel), Euridice (Orfeo ed Euridice), Adele (Die Fledermaus), and the title role in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen. Her concert repertoire includes the sacred works, concert scenes and arias of Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Schubert and Schumann, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Christus am Olberge, the Requiems of Brahms and Fauré, Rossini and Szymanowski’s Stabat Mater, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Gorecki’s Symphony No. 3, and the songs of Mahler, Zemlinsky, Berg and Richard Strauss.
In December 2014 Chen Reiss was invited to sing for Pope Francis during the Christmas Mass, which was broadcast worldwide. She has recorded a wide range of repertoire including a disc of Mozart, Salieri, Haydn and Cimarosa arias, and a recital “Le Rossignol et la Rose” presenting a romantic compilation of songs with distinguished pianist Charles Spencer (both for Onyx Classics), roles in complete recordings of Die Fledermaus (Capriccio), Don Giovanni and Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem (Helicon) and Lehar‘s Das Fürstenkind (CPO), and DVD releases of Fauré’s Requiem with Orchestre de Paris conducted by Paavo Järvi, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. Accompanied by the Berlin Philharmonic and Sir Simon Rattle, she sang the soundtrack to Tom Tykwer’s film “Perfume: the Story of a Murderer”.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Meeresstille und glückliche Fahrt, op. 112
Lobgesang, op. 52
After meeting Goethe in 1812, Beethoven was inspired by the writer’s literary work, for which he had a deep admiration, and based himself on it to create the majestic cantata for chorus and orchestra Meeresstille und glückliche Fahrt. Mendelssohn also met Goethe very early on in his career – he also put some of his poems to music – and the writer declared that he was witnessing a prodigy comparable to Mozart. Mendelssohn’s creation would similarly be very permeable to his relationship with poetry, Symphony No. 2, Lobgesang, being one of the most notable examples.
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