‘Cello Concerto’, the new concert series of ERSO, brings world-class cellists and acclaimed conductors to the stage of the Estonia Concert Hall. The series begins in September with Edward Elgar’s Cello Concerto, where the orchestra is conducted by Kristiina Poska and German cellist Alban Gerhardt is performing the solos. Gerhardt’s career launched in 1991, when he soloed with the Berlin Philharmonic. Since then, he has been considered one of the most versatile cellists in the world, characterised by technical mastery, deep musicality, and never-ending artistic curiosity. Gerhardt plays a cello made by Matteo Gofriller in 1710. The concert opens with Elis Hallik’s Aegis, which is dedicated to the centenary of the Republic of Estonia and carries the idea of a protective shield. The second half of the evening is devoted to Symphony No. 2 by Jean Sibelius. The symphony composed in Italy is a synthesis of classical lightness and romantic sensibilities and constitutes a crossroad in the musical development of Sibelius.

In November, Theodor Sink, the principal cello of ERSO, will take the stage as the soloist for the orchestra. As a multifaceted interpreter, Sink is a soloist, a chamber musician, and an orchestra member. He started to work at ERSO in 2017, and since then, he has soloed regularly with the orchestra. This time, Olari Elts will conduct Henri Dutilleux’s Cello Concerto. The five parts of the piece are inspired by the poetry of Charles Baudelaire. The composition is considered one of the finest examples of its genre created in the twentieth century. The programme of the concert also includes Les Offrandes Oubliées, created by one of the most influential composers of the twentieth century, Oliver Messiaen, when he was still young. The orchestral piece Vista by Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho (who sadly passed away last year) is going to be performed for the first time in Estonia. The concert also includes a beloved orchestral piece by Maurice Ravel – the choreographic poem La Valse. This is a twentieth-century tribute to the Viennese waltz, a sore memory of its glory days.

The third concert in the series is once again conducted by chief conductor Olari Elts. One of the best cellists of our time, Steven Isserlis, will be the soloist at the concert. Isserlis, who is recognised all across the world for his technique and musicality, is a soloist, a chamber musician, a writer, and a TV host. He performs regularly with the best orchestras in the world and has released dozens of records. In 1998, he was awarded a CBE in the United Kingdom. Isserlis plays a Stradivarius cello made in 1726. At the concert, he and ERSO will perform Robert Schumann’s Cello Concerto. The concert opens with a new piece by Helena Tulve. For the first time ever, ERSO will be performing D’un Matin de printemps, the last work by French composer Lili Boulanger. The spring mood continues in Symphony No. 1 by Robert Schumann, where ‘spring’ could be seen as a synonym for the new beginning in the composer’s life.

The ‘Cello Concerto’ series concludes with Dutch cellist Pieter Wispelwey. He is equally adept at performing Baroque as well as contemporary cello music. His competent stylistic know-how, original and deep musical thinking, and phenomenal technique allow him to perform remarkable interpretations ranging from Bach to Britten. Wispelwey uses a contemporary instrument as well as a Baroque cello. With ERSO, he will perform Cello Concerto No. 1 by Joseph Haydn. The orchestra is conducted by José Luis Gomez, the chief conductor of Tucson Symphony Orchestra. Gomez’s career took off in 2010 at the Sir Georg Solti International Conductors’ Competition, after which he worked as Paavo Järvi’s assistant at the Frankfurt Radio Symphony. He is going to conduct ERSO as it performs Overture No. 1 by Louise Farrenc for the first time. The evening also includes Edward Elgar’s Enigma Variations, which was the first large-scale purely symphonic work of the composer, where he demonstrated his unique and novel approach to the genre with age-old traditions.

Series sponsored by Liviko

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Concert series ‘CELLO CONCERTO’
  • 27.09.24 at 19:00 - Estonia Concert Hall
  • 15.11.24 at 19:00 - Estonia Concert Hall
  • 14.03.25 at 19:00 - Estonia Concert Hall
  • 30.04.25 at 19:00 - Estonia Concert Hall