Sunday, May 15, 2016


For Immediate Release
May 9, 2016


Orchestra will be joined by soloists Daniil Trifonov, Martin Grubinger, Anne-Sophie Mutter and Leonidas Kavakos

PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Manfred Honeck depart for a 14-concert European Tour on May 17. The orchestra will return to Pittsburgh on June 5. Along with concerts in four countries, this tour includes a collaboration with the Pittsburgh Regional Alliance, a live simulcast to Heinz Hall and a chamber music performance at a former concentration camp.

The tour will take the orchestra to Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Belgium. The concerts on the tour include:
·        May 20: at the Kuppelsall in Hannover, Germany, with percussionist Martin Grubinger
·        May 21: at the Die Glocke in Bremen, Germany, with pianist Daniil Trifonov
·        May 22: at the Philharmonie in Berlin, Germany, with Daniil Trifonov
·        May 23: at the Albertinum Museum in Dresden, Germany, with Daniil Trifonov
·        May 25: at the Alte Oper in Frankfurt, Germany, with Daniil Trifonov
·        May 26: at the Musikverein in Vienna, Austria, with Martin Grubinger
·        May 27: at the Musikverein in Vienna, Austria, with Daniil Trifonov
·        May 28: at the Musikverein in Vienna, Austria, with violinist Leonidas Kavakos
·        May 29: at the Festival House in Bregenz, Austria, with Daniil Trifonov
·        May 31: at the Stadt-Casino in Basel, Switzerland, with Daniil Trifonov
·        June 1: at the Bozar Center for Fine Arts in Brussels, Belgium, with Daniil Trifonov
·        June 2: at the Liederhalle in Stuttgart, Germany, with Daniil Trifonov
·        June 3: at the Philharmonie Am Gasteig in Munich, Germany with Daniil Trifonov
·        June 4: at the Philharmonie Am Gasteig in Munich, Germany with violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter

Grubinger, photo credit Felix Broede

The tour program features Tchaikovsky's Symphonies No. 4, 5 and 
6; Beethoven's Coriolan Overture; Dvořák's Carnival Overture; Haydn's Symphony No. 93; Hartl's Percussion Concerto (with Grubinger); Liszt's Piano Concerto No. 1 and Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2 (with Trifonov); Berg's Violin Concerto (with Kavakos); Dvořák's  Violin Concerto (with Mutter); and Strauss's Elektra Symphonic Rhapsody — arranged by Manfred Honeck and Tomás Ille.  


The concert at the Berlin Philharmonie on May 22 will be simulcast via satellite on the big screen at Heinz Hall at 2 p.m. EST. The program features Beethoven’sCoriolan Overture, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6, “Pathétique.” The concert is free but reservations are required. Tickets can be reserved online at or by phone at 412-392-4900. The concert will also be livestreamed on the Pittsburgh Symphony’s website.The Pittsburgh Symphony would like to thank and recognize Echo International and the German American Chamber of Commerce, Pittsburgh chapter, for their sponsorship of the Berlin live stream at Heinz Hall.


During the tour, the Clarion Quartet, a quartet of Pittsburgh Symphony musicians — Jennifer Orchard and Marta Krechkovsky, violins; Tatjana Mead Chamis, viola; and Bronwyn Banerdt, cello — will perform at the Terezin Memorial in the Czech Republic on May 24. Terezin was a Jewish ghetto, prison and transit station to death camps in the East during World War II. The quartet’s focus is “entartete (degenerate) music,” music by composers who were suppressed during the Third Reich. The performance will begin at 3:30 p.m. CET at the Attic, which hosted many cultural events while the camp was active. The concert will include Viktor Ullmann’s Quartet No. 3, which was written at Theresienstadt when Ullmann was a prisoner there.

The 2016 European Tour marks the eighth collaboration between the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and the Allegheny Conference on Economic Development/Pittsburgh Regional Alliance, representatives from which will join the symphony during its tour and host events around the symphony’s concerts in Brussels and Munich to promote economic development in Pittsburgh.

International touring is made possible, in part, by the Hillman Endowment for International Performances. The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s 2016 European Tour is dedicated to the memory of Elsie Hillman. The Pittsburgh Symphony would like to thank and recognize Ensinger for its supporting sponsorship of the Stuttgart concert and BNY Mellon for its supporting partnership of the Frankfurt and June 4 Munich concerts. The engagement at the Dresden Music Festival is supported by the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation through USArtists International in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. 


MANFRED HONECK has served as music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since the 2008-2009 season. Together with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Honeck’s widely celebrated performances and distinctive interpretations continue to receive international recognition. To great acclaim, Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra regularly perform in major music capitals and festivals, among them the BBC Proms, Musikfest Berlin, Lucerne Festival, Rheingau Musik Festival, Beethovenfest Bonn, Grafenegg Festival, Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Honeck and the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra have also built a close relationship with the Musikverein in Vienna. Following a week-long residency in 2012, they will return once again for three performances in the course of an extensive tour of Europe in spring 2016.  

Honeck's successful work with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has been extensively documented on recordings with the Reference and Exton labels. The first SACD released by Reference Records of Strauss tone poems, drew rave reviews. The second recording, of Dvořák's Symphony No. 8 and the Symphonic Suite from Janáček's opera Jenůfa, conceptualized by Honeck himself, was nominated for a Grammy Award. Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4 was released in February 2015 to critical acclaim, including a second Grammy nomination, and Beethoven 5 & 7 was released in November 2015. The next recording, Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6 and a suite of Dvořák’s Rusalka, will be released on May 13. Several recordings, among them Mahler's Symphony No. 4, which won a 2012 International Classical Music Award, are also available on the Japanese label Exton.

As a guest conductor, Honeck has worked with the world’s leading orchestras including the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Staatskapelle Dresden, London Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre de Paris and Accademia di Santa Cecilia Rome. In the United States, Honeck has conducted the New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra and Boston Symphony Orchestra. He is also a regular guest at the Verbier Festival. In 2013, Honeck gave his successful debut with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, resulting in a CD recording of Dvořák together with Anne-Sophie Mutter for Deutsche Grammophon, which received an Echo Klassik award in 2014. The 2015-2016 season sees him return to Bamberg, Stuttgart, Rome, Stockholm and New York, as well as the Munich Philharmonic, London Symphony Orchestra and Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, among others.

Born in Austria, Honeck received his musical training at the Academy of Music in Vienna. Many years of experience as a member of the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna State Opera Orchestra and at the helm of the Vienna Jeunesse Orchestra have given his conducting a distinctive stamp. Honeck began his career as assistant to Claudio Abbado in Vienna. Subsequently, he was engaged by the Zurich Opera House, where he was bestowed the prestigious European Conductor’s Award in 1993. Honeck was one of three main conductors of the MDR Symphony Orchestra in Leipzig and in Oslo, he assumed the post of music director at the Norwegian National Opera and was engaged as principal guest conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. From 2000 to 2006, he was music director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Stockholm and, from 2008 to 2011, principal guest conductor of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he resumed for another three years at the beginning of the 2013-2014 season.

From 2007 to 2011, Honeck was music director of the Staatsoper Stuttgart where he conducted premieres including Berlioz's Les Troyens, Mozart's Idomeneo, Verdi's Aida, Richard Strauss's Rosenkavalier, Poulenc's Dialogues des Carmélites and Wagner's Lohengrin and Parsifal, as well as numerous symphonic concerts. His operatic guest appearances include Semperoper Dresden, Komische Oper Berlin, Théâtre de la Monnaie in Brussels, Royal Opera of Copenhagen, the White Nights Festival in St. Petersburg and the Salzburg Festival.

Honeck has received honorary doctorates from St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pennsylvania and, most recently, from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Moreover, he has been artistic director of the “International Concerts Wolfegg” in Germany for more than 20 years.

The PITTSBURGH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, celebrating 120 years of music in 2016, is credited with a rich history of the world’s finest conductors and musicians, and a strong commitment to the Pittsburgh region and its citizens. Past music directors have included Fritz Reiner (1938-1948), William Steinberg (1952-1976), Andre Previn (1976-1984), Lorin Maazel (1984-1996) and Mariss Jansons (1995-2004).  This tradition of outstanding international music directors was furthered in fall 2008, when Austrian conductor Manfred Honeck became music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony. The orchestra has been at the forefront of championing new American works, and gave the first performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Symphony No. 1 “Jeremiah” in 1944 and John Adams’ Short Ride in a Fast Machine in 1986. The Pittsburgh Symphony has a long and illustrious history in the areas of recordings and radio concerts. As early as 1936, the Pittsburgh Symphony broadcast on the airwaves coast-to-coast and in the late 1970s it made the ground breaking PBS series “Previn and the Pittsburgh.” The orchestra has received increased national attention since 1982 through network radio broadcasts on Public Radio International, produced by Classical WQED-FM 89.3, made possible by the musicians of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. With a long and distinguished history of touring both domestically and overseas since 1900—including international tours to Europe, the Far East and South America—the Pittsburgh Symphony continues to be critically acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest orchestras. Visit
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