Baltic Youth Philharmonic Led by Kristjan Järvi to open the Usedom Music Festival

New youth orchestra of the Baltic region wraps second season with a September 19th Performance at Peenemünde

North German Radio to broadcast concert in this historic space

The seventy young musicians of the Baltic Youth Philharmonic have had a thrilling second season of music-making bringing their “extraordinary sound” (Weser Kurier) to six countries this summer: Estonia, Finland, Lithuania, Denmark and Germany. On September 19, 2009, the Baltic Youth Philharmonic will open the 16th Usedom Music Festival, performing in the historic turbine hall at the Peenemünde Museum. This former Third Reich weapons research and testing facility on the island of Usedom in Germany has now been reimagined as a monument of peace and remembrance. This performance will be recorded for broadcast on North German Radio (NDR) and will be distributed to radio stations worldwide through the European Broadcasting Union.

The Baltic Youth Philharmonic will present Symphony No. 1 by Johannes Brahms, Symphony No. 5 by Piotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky, the Overture Das Märchen von der schönen Melusine by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy as well as Ludwig van Beethoven’s Concerto Opus 61 in a version for piano and orchestra by Beethoven himself. The cadenzas of the concerto, more commonly known in its version for violin and orchestra, were written specifically for the Baltic Youth Philharmonic by Lithuanian composer Anatolijus Senderovas. Swedish pianist Peter Jablonski premieres this new version of the concerto.

During their summer 2009 performances, the Baltic Youth Philharmonic was warmly greeted by audiences and journalists alike. The Weser-Kurier Bremen said the Baltic Youth Philharmonic “knows how to put a spell on an audience,” while the orchestra was also praised for their “sheer joy of playing” (Nordkurier) and a sound which is “very cultivated, but at the same time passionate” (Ostsee Zeitung).

The Baltic Youth Orchestra is an innovative training orchestra founded in the summer of 2008 as a joint initiative between the Usedom Music Festival and Nord Stream AG and led by Founding Conductor and Music Director Kristjan Järvi. The Baltic Youth Philharmonic brings together the most promising young musicians ranging in age from 18-30 from music academies in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany to create A New Voice in the North, an experience that draws upon the richness of the region’s diversity. Since April 2009, the Baltic Youth Philharmonic is an associate member of the European Federation of National Youth Orchestras (EFNYO).

Together with the North German Radio (NDR), the Usedom Music Festival initiated a series of concerts at Peenemünde in 2002 with a performance of Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem conducted by Mstislav Rostropovich. The Peenemünde Concerts are now the highlights of the annual festival, marking a new chapter in the history of the place. In the former electricity plant serving the production of rockets, a new generation of young musicians now gather to make music in this historic context.

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