Biography Gustavo Dudamel & Wiener Philharmoniker

Yuja Wang
Twenty-six year old pianist Yuja Wang is widely recognized as one of the most important artists of her generation. Regularly lauded for her controlled, prodigious technique, Yuja has been praised for her authority over the most complex technical demands of the repertoire, the depth of her musical insight, as well as her fresh interpretations and charismatic stage presence.

Yuja is an exclusive recording artist for Deutsche Grammophon. Following her debut recording, Sonatas & Etudes, Gramophone magazine named Yuja the Classic FM 2009 Young Artist of the Year. For her second recording, Transformation, Yuja received an Echo Klassik award as “Young Artist of the Year”. Yuja next collaborated with Maestro Claudio Abbado and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra to record her first concerto album featuring Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini and his Concerto No. 2 in C minor which was nominated for a Grammy as “Best Classical Instrumental Solo.” This was followed by, Fantasia, a collection of encore pieces by Albéniz, Bach, Chopin, Rachmaninov, Saint-Saëns, Scriabin and others.

In the years since her 2005 debut with the National Arts Center Orchestra led by Pinchas Zukerman, Yuja has already performed with many of the world’s most prestigious orchestras including those of Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Washington, in the U.S., and abroad with the Berlin Staatskapelle, China Philharmonic, Filarmonica della Scala, Israel Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, Orquesta Nacional España, Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra, the NHK Symphony in Tokyo, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Orchestra Mozart and Santa Cecilia, among others.

In 2006 Yuja made her New York Philharmonic debut at the Bravo! Vail Music Festival and performed with the orchestra the following season under Lorin Maazel during the Philharmonic’s Japan/Korea visit. In 2008 she toured the United States with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields led by Sir Neville Marriner, and in 2009 Yuja performed as soloist with the You Tube Symphony Orchestra led by Michael Tilson Thomas at Carnegie Hall. That summer Yuja joined Abbado at the Lucerne Music Festival performing and recording Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3, and went on to perform with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra and Abbado on tour in China.

Yuja regularly gives recitals in major cities throughout Asia, Europe and North America. She is a dedicated performer of chamber music appearing at summer festivals throughout the world including annual appearances at Switzerland’s Verbier Festival. In March 2011 Yuja performed in a three-concert chamber series at the Salle Pleyel in Paris with principal players from the Berlin Philharmonic. She made her Carnegie Hall recital debut at Stern Hall in October 2011.

Many of the world’s esteemed conductors have collaborated with Yuja including Abbado, Daniel Barenboim, Dudamel, Charles Dutoit, Daniele Gatti, Valery Gergiev, Mikko Franck, Manfred Honeck, Pietari Inkinen, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Mehta, Kurt Masur, Antonio Pappano, Yuri Temirkanov and Michael Tilson Thomas.

Last year Yuja returned to the Israel Philharmonic to work with Zubin Mehta, followed by a tour of the U.S. that included performances at Carnegie and Disney halls. She then launched into a three-week tour of Asia with the San Francisco Symphony and Tilson Thomas, traveling to Macau, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan. Yuja again joined the Berlin Philharmonic’s principal players, this time with a series of all-Brahms concerts at Salle Pleyel in Paris. In spring 2013 she was presented by the Berlin Philharmonic in recital at the Philharmonie, and returned to Carnegie Hall in both recital and a concerto appearance with the San Francisco Symphony. Her season included a recital tour of Japan where she made her Suntory Hall debut.

This season the London Symphony Orchestra have invited Yuja as their featured artist in the LSO Artist Portrait series for 2014 which includes performing three concertos, a recital and chamber music in London, followed by a tour of China with Daniel Harding conducting. She makes her debut with the Hungarian National Philharmonic conducted by Zoltan Kocsis performing Bartok’s Piano Concerto No. 2. Yuja’s frequent summer collaborations with violinist Leonidas Kavakos are extended further as they will undertake multiple tours of Europe focusing on the great violin and piano sonatas of Brahms. She returns to the Los Angeles Philharmonic for subscription concerts and on tour in the U.S. with Dudamel conducting. Yuja also returns to the Boston Symphony, Sir Andrew Davis conducting, and the Cleveland Orchestra, Giancarlo Guerrero conducting.

At a young age Yuja entered the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing to study under Ling Yuan and Zhou Guangren. From 1999 to 2001 she participated in the Morningside Music summer program at Calgary’s Mount Royal College, an artistic and cultural exchange program between Canada and China, and began studying with Hung-Kuan Chen and Tema Blackstone at the Mount Royal College Conservatory. Yuja then moved to the U.S. to study with Gary Graffman at The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where she graduated in 2008. In 2006 she received the Gilmore Young Artist Award, and in 2010 was awarded the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant. Yuja is a Steinway Artist.

Gustavo Dudamel
passionate music-making continues to inspire audiences of all ages worldwide. Currently serving as Music Director of both the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the impact of his musical leadership is felt on four continents. While his commitment to these posts accounts for the major portion of his yearly schedule, Dudamel also guest conducts with some of the world’s greatest musical institutions. This season he returns to the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics, and tours with La Scala in opera and concert to Japan. Additional guest appearances include the New York Philharmonic, Munich Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra London, Bamberg Symphony, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Gothenburg Symphony, where he is Honorary Conductor.

Dudamel makes his first foray into composing for film with the major feature Libertador (the life of Simón Bolívar), for which he wrote the score and recorded it with the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela. It is being released this season, along with the soundtrack.

Now in his 15th season as Music Director, Dudamel continues to lead the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra in his native Venezuela as well as on tour. Starting with a production of Tannhäuser at the Bogotá Opera in July 2013, followed by a 2013 summer residency at the Salzburg Festival, the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra then tours to Paris and the Middle East in January of 2014, before travelling to California in February for a residency and joint concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic for an LA Phil Tchaikovsky Festival.

Gustavo Dudamel is in his fifth season as Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where his contract has already been extended through 2018-19, the orchestra’s 100th season. Under his leadership the Los Angeles Philharmonic has expanded its diversified outreach through many projects, most notably Youth Orchestra Los Angeles (YOLA), influenced by Venezuela’s widely successful El Sistema. With YOLA, Gustavo brings music to children in the underserved communities of Los Angeles, and also serves as an inspiration for similar efforts throughout the United States, as well as for programs in Sweden (Hammarkullen) and Scotland (Raploch). This season, the students of YOLA will have the unique opportunity of playing alongside the musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in its first ever public “side by side” concert.

At the Los Angeles Philharmonic, it is not only the breadth of the audience reached, but also the depth of the programming performed under Gustavo Dudamel that is remarkable. Programs at the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2013-2014 continue to represent the best and the boldest: eleven world premieres and thirteen commissions; a Hollywood Bowl Aida and Verdi Requiem; a community-wide season opening festival in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Walt Disney Concert Hall, culminating in a gala performance at the Hall; and a seven-city North American tour to San Francisco, Kansas City, New York, Washington DC, Toronto, Montreal and Boston in March 2014. The season ends with a staged Così fan tutte with sets by architect Zaha Hadid, completing a three-consecutive-year Mozart/Da Ponte trilogy project.

An exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist since 2005, Grammy winner Gustavo Dudamel has numerous recordings on the label. As part of a major Mahler recording project, his most recent CD release is Mahler 9 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, with Mahler 7 (Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra) anticipated for early 2014. In addition, DG has already released Mahler 5, as well as Dudamel: Mahler 8 - Symphony of a Thousand Live from Caracas(DVD + Blu-Ray), featuring the combined forces of the LA Phil and the Bolívars. September 2013 sees the international release of an all-Strauss disc with the Berlin Philharmonic (CD), and a concerto disc with the Bolívars and Yuja Wang featuring Rachmaninoff’s Third Piano Concerto and Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto is scheduled for release later this season. A CD of Adams’ Gospel According to the Other Mary with the Los Angeles Philharmonic is planned for release in March 2014.

Wiener Philharmoniker
On March 28, 1842 Otto Nicolai conducted a 'grand concert' that was performed by all the members of the Royal and Imperial Court Opera. This 'Philharmonic Academy' is rightly considered to be the birth of the Wiener Philharmoniker, since, for the first time, all the principles of the 'philharmonic idea' were realized: only members of the orchestra of the Vienna State Opera (formerly Court Opera) are eligible to become members of the Wiener Philharmoniker; the orchestral has artistic, organizational and financial independence; all decisions are reached in a democratic way; and the actual administration is carried out by a twelve-member, democratically elected committee.

After twelve years of stagnation, the Wiener Philharmoniker gave its first subscription concert on January 15, 1860 under the direction of the opera director, Carl Eckert. The philharmonic concerts have continued, without interruption, ever since.

The only basic change took place in 1933 when a series of guest conductors replaced the system of choosing a conductor for a whole season. After Otto Dessoff systematically expanded the repertoire, Hans Richter, the legendary conductor of the Bayreuth premiere of Wagner's Ring der Nibelungen, succeeded in establishing the ensemble's worldwide reputation and incomparable tradition. Encounters with Wagner, Verdi, Bruckner, Brahms, Liszt and others, either as conductor or soloist, further enhanced this reputation. Gustav Mahler led the first concert of the orchestra outside of Austria, at the Paris World's Fair of 1900. Working together with Arturo Toscanini in the years 1933 -37 was another highlight. The close relationship with Richard Strauss was of great importance as far as music history was concerned. Between 1906 and 1944, he conducted numerous performances around the world and was bound with the orchestra in a sincere friendship.

At the beginning of World War II, the National Socialists immediately dismissed all Jewish artists from the Vienna State Opera. Only the intervention of Wilhelm Furtwängler brought the cancellation of an order to dissolve the philharmonic association. He also saved the 'half-Jews' and relatives of Jews from dismissal. The orchestra, however, mourned the deaths of six of its Jewish members who were murdered in concentration camps and that of a young violinist who was killed on the eastern front.

After the second World War, the Wiener Philharmoniker revived its connections to all major conductors. Collaboration with honorary conductors Karl Böhm and Herbert von Karajan, as well as honorary member Leonard Bernstein, hold special significance in the more recent history of the orchestra.

With its dominant role at the Salzburg Festival, or with the New Year's Concert, the orchestra succeeds again and again in setting accents of incomparable individuality. In any case, the Wiener Philharmoniker strive to realize the motto Ludwig van Beethoven wrote at the start of his 'Missa Solemnis': 'From the heart - may it in turn go to the heart!'

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