Ciconia Consort olv Dick van Gasteren - Rheingold
A musical journey full of romance, through the … valley of the river Rhine, with the well-known cellist Pieter Wispelwey as a soloist.
Carl Reinecke (1824-1910) – Serenade for strings in g, opus 242
Robert Schumann (1810-1856) – Celloconcerto in a, opus 129
Max Bruch (1838-1920) – Octet for Strings in B Flat, opus postuum (1920)
For ages, the river Rhine has been serving as the romantic background for legends about lives and loves of humans and gods. This is especially true for the region between Bingen and Koblenz, the Oberes Mittel-Rheintal. This picturesque region, full of medieval small towns and castles, has been exerting an influence on a great number of writers and composers. Equally, the Ciconia Consort has found inspiration in the rich history of this area, for its concert called Rheingold. For instance in the stories about the Nibelungen, the tower of mice in Bingen, and the nymph Loreley, situated on a high rock next to the river, made perish numerous ships in the Rhine with her singing. Composer Max Bruch even wrote an opera based on this ancient folktale. During this concert you’ll be listening to one of his last works, the wonderful octet for strings. The composer of the concert’s opening piece, Carl Reinecke, wrote the song cycle ‘Der Ritter vom Rhein’. You probably are familiar with the compelling ‘Rheinische Symphonie', written by Robert Schumann. Tonight you are going to listen to his famous Cello Concerto, performed by master cellist Pieter Wispelwey.
Ciconia Consort, The Hague String Orchestra
The Ciconia String Orchestra is a consort of twenty excellent musicians of many nationalities. It is conducted by Dick van Gasteren, who also is a guest conductor at the famous Simón Bolívar Orkest in Venezuela. The Ciconia is well-known for its original programming and its very high artistical quality. During their concerts, music is often combined with other arts, like theatre, literature and science. Often, current societal issues are at stake.
Their performances are being highly acclaimed by critics in The Netherlands and abroad: “an exciting group of musicians, performing at extremely high level” (Klassieke Zaken); “impressive unity and full string tone” (Musicweb International)
Their acclaim equally goes for Ciconia’s debut-CD French Music for String Orchestra, published in 2018. Their second CD, called American Pioneers, has been available since December 2020. The Ciconia Consort has been participating to several Dutch Radio 4 broadcasts, i.e. Avondconcert, Vrije geluiden, Muziekfabriek en Muziekwijzer, and on TV at bij Podium Witteman.
The orchestra has been performing music of all ages, from baroque to contemporary, cooperating with many well-known soloists, i.e. Pieter Wispelwey, Peter Gijsbertsen, Lavinia Meyer, Lilian Farahani, Paolo Giacometti, and with scientists and writers like Pieter Waterdrinker, Maarten van Rossem, Rosita Steenbeek, and Willem Otterspeer.
Pieter Wispelwey, cello
Born in Haarlem, The Netherlands, Wispelwey studied with Dicky Boeke and Anner Bylsma in Amsterdam and later with Paul Katz in the USA and William Pleeth in the UK.
Pieter Wispelwey plays on a 1760 Giovanni Battista Guadagnini cello and a 1710 Rombouts baroque cello. He is equally at ease on the modern or period cello. His acute stylistic awareness, combined with a truly original interpretation and a phenomenal technical mastery, has won the hearts of critics and public alike in repertoire ranging from JS Bach to Schnittke, Elliott Carter and works composed for him. Wispelwey’s career spans five continents and he has appeared as soloist with many of the world’s leading orchestras. He equally enjoys chamber music collaborations and regular duo partners include pianists Cédric Tiberghien and Alasdair Beatson. His impressive discography consists of over 20 albums. In 2012 Wispelwey celebrated his 50th birthday by embarking on a project showcasing the Bach Cello Suites.