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The 2018-19 season is Andris Nelsons’ fifth as the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Ray and Maria Stata Music Director. Named Musical America’s 2018 Artist of the Year, Mr. Nelsons will lead fourteen of the BSO’s twenty-six subscription programs in 2018-19, ranging from orchestral works by Haydn, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and Copland to concerto collaborations with acclaimed soloists, as well as world and American premieres of pieces newly commissioned by the BSO from Thomas Adès, Sebastian Currier, Andris Dzenītis, and Mark-Anthony Turnage; the continuation of his complete Shostakovich symphony cycle with the orchestra, and concert performances of Puccini’s one-act opera Suor Angelica. In summer 2015, following his first season as music director, Andris Nelsons’ contract with the BSO was extended through the 2021-22 season. In November 2017, he and the orchestra toured Japan together for the first time. In February 2018, he became Gewandhauskapellmeister of the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, in which capacity he brings both orchestras together for a unique multi-dimensional alliance. Immediately following the 2018 Tanglewood season, Maestro Nelsons and the BSO made their third European tour together, playing concerts in London, Hamburg, Berlin, Leipzig, Vienna, Lucerne, Paris, and Amsterdam. Their first European tour, following the 2015 Tanglewood season, took them to major European capitals and the Lucerne, Salzburg, and Grafenegg festivals; the second, in May 2016, took them to eight cities in Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg.
The fifteenth music director in the history of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons made his BSO debut at Carnegie Hall in March 2011, his Tanglewood debut in July 2012, and his BSO subscription series debut in January 2013. His recordings with the BSO, all made live in concert at Symphony Hall, include the complete Brahms symphonies on BSO Classics; Grammy-winning recordings on Deutsche Grammophon of Shostakovich’s symphonies 5, 8, 9, and 10, the initial releases in a complete Shostakovich symphony cycle for that label; and a new two-disc set pairing Shostakovich’s symphonies 4 and 11, The Year 1905. Under an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon, Andris Nelsons is also recording the complete Bruckner symphonies with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the complete Beethoven symphonies with the Vienna Philharmonic.
The 2018-19 season is Maestro Nelsons’ final season as artist-in-residence at the Konzerthaus Dortmund and marks his first season as artist-in-residence at Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie. In addition, he continues his regular collaborations with the Vienna Philharmonic and Berlin Philharmonic. Throughout his career, he has also established regular collaborations with Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the Philharmonia Orchestra, and has been a regular guest at the Bayreuth Festival and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
Born in Riga in 1978 into a family of musicians, Andris Nelsons began his career as a trumpeter in the Latvian National Opera Orchestra before studying conducting. He was music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra from 2008 to 2015, principal conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie in Herford, Germany, from 2006 to 2009, and music director of Latvian National Opera from 2003 to 2007.
Andris Nelsons, conductor
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With his highly virtuosic yet unpretentious style, Martin
Helmchen has become one of the great pianists of his generation.
Born in 1982, he has made a series of sensational U.S. orchestral
debuts, beginning in 2011 at Tanglewood, playing the Schumann
Concerto with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Christoph von
Dohnányi. In 2014, with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln
Center, he gave a revelatory performance of the Dvorák Piano
Concerto; in 2015, he made his Symphony Hall debut, performing
Beethoven's Concerto No. 5 with the Boston Symphony Orchestra; and
in 2016, he performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, playing
Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 2. This past season, he debuted with
the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra at Lincoln Center under
Thierry Fischer, performing Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 25. During
the 2017/2018 season, he will make debuts with both the San Diego
and Kansas City symphonies.
Mr. Helmchen has also appeared with the symphonies of Dallas,
Grand Rapids, Houston, Portland (Oregon), Saint Louis, and San
Francisco, as well as with the Cleveland Orchestra at Blossom. In
May 2014, he made a highly acclaimed recital debut at the Kennedy
Center in Washington, D.C.
Among Martin Helmchen's worldwide highlights are performances
with the Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, London
Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Vienna Philharmonic, and the NHK
Symphony in Japan. Other international engagements include the City
of Birmingham Symphony, Frankfurt Radio Symphony,
Gürzenich-Orchester/Cologne, Orchestre Philharmonique de
Monte-Carlo, Philharmonia Orchestra/London, Prague Symphony, and
the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. Artist-in-Residence with the Zurich
Tonhalle Orchestra during the 2011/2012 season, he has also
appeared with the BBC/London, Bournemouth Symphony, Deutsche
Kammerphilharmonie/Bremen, Dresden Philharmonic, DSO/Berlin, Hallé
Orchestra/Manchester, Giuseppe Verdi Symphony/Milan, NDR/Hamburg,
Netherlands Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre
National de France, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, Rotterdam
Philharmonic, RSO/Berlin, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and the
Stuttgart Radio Orchestra, among others. In France, he tours with
La Chambre Philharmonique under Emmanuel Krivine.
Mr. Helmchen has collaborated with such renowned conductors as
David Afkham, Marc Albrecht, Herbert Blomstedt, Semyon Bychkov,
Christoph von Dohnányi, Sir Mark Elder, Lawrence Foster, Edward
Gardner, Valery Gergiev, Hans Graf, Manfred Honeck, Philippe
Herreweghe, Pablo Heras-Casado, Marek Janowski, Michail Jurowski,
Vladimir Jurowski, Bernhard Klee, Jiri Kout, Sir Neville Marriner,
the late Kurt Masur, Andris Nelsons, Sir Roger Norrington, Andrés
Orozco-Estrada, Christoph Poppen, Markus Poschner, Michael
Sanderling, Heinrich Schiff, Marcus Stenz, Krzysztof Urbanski,
Gilbert Varga, and David Zinman, to name a few.
Also an enthusiastic recitalist, Martin Helmchen has performed
at prestigious venues around the world, such as The Frick
Collection/New York, Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall (with cellist
Marie-Elisabeth Hecker), the Coast Recital Society, San Francisco
Performances, ArtSpring, the Wigmore Hall/London, and the Alte Oper
in Frankfort. He also appears regularly at major German festivals,
we well as the Schubertiade, Lockenhaus, and Marlboro. In 2017, he
will be artist in residence at Germany's Schwetzingen SWR
With a passion for chamber music, largely ignited by his early
collaborations with the late cellist Boris Pergamenschikow, Mr.
Helmchen now performs regularly with Heinrich Schiff and
Marie-Elisabeth Hecker. Other partners include Juliane Banse,
Veronika Eberle, Julia Fischer (with whom he is on tour in Asia
during the current season), Sharon Kam, Gidon Kremer, Sabine Meyer,
Christian Tetzlaff, Lars Vogt, and Tabea Zimmermann. Since 2010, he
has been an Associate Professor of chamber music at the Kronberg
Academy. Last summer he was invited to return to Elena Bashkirova's
International Chamber Music Festival in Jerusalem.
An active recording artist, Martin Helmchen's debut disc of
Mozart concertos with the Netherlands Chamber Philharmonic was
released in September 2007 through his exclusive contract with
PentaTone. A second Mozart concerto disc with the same orchestra
was released in 2013. His first solo CD, a recording of works by
Schubert, won an ECHO Award in 2009. Other discs for PentaTone
include the Mendelssohn concertos, the Schumann and Dvorák
concertos, and the highly acclaimed complete works of Schubert for
violin and piano with Julia Fischer.
Mr. Helmchen studied at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in
Berlin with Galina Iwanzowa, at the Hochschule für Musik und
Theater in Hanover with Arie Vardie, and with William Grant Naboré.
His career took off when he won the 2001 Clara Haskil International
Piano Competition at the age of nineteen. Other distinctions
include a fellowship from the Borletti-Buitoni Trust in 2005; the
Credit Suisse Young Artist Award in 2006 (culminating in his debut
with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra under Valery Gergiev at the
Lucerne Festival); and soloist in the "BBC New Generation Artists"
program from 2005 to 2007.
Martin Helmchen, piano