Press Room

Concertgebouw Orchestra celebrates 125th in DC and NYC (Feb 12-14)

February 2013 takes the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO) across the Atlantic for a rare U.S. tour, with appearances at the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall. Led by Chief Conductor Mariss Jansons, the orchestra will present two programs, pairing Mahler with Bartók (Feb 12 & 13) and Bruckner with Strauss (Feb 14) respectively. These milestone events help launch the venerable Dutch orchestra’s extensive 125th-anniversary celebrations: a year-long world tour on an unprecedented scale – 43 concerts in 30 cities across all six inhabited continents – and more than 70 appearances at the orchestra’s Amsterdam home. Music-lovers will also be able to follow the tour remotely, thanks to “RCO Universe,” its exclusive new iPad app.
One of the world’s preeminent ensembles, the Royal Concertgebouw is known for its inimitable sound: what the New York Times calls the “warmth and depth for which this great Dutch orchestra has long been revered.” This owes in no small part to the modest number and outstanding quality of the chief conductors it has employed. Only the sixth incumbent in the RCO’s entire 125-year history, Mariss Jansons follows in the footsteps of such legendary figures as Willem Mengelberg and Bernard Haitink. As a result, the orchestra’s 120 members, while drawn from more than 20 countries, have nonetheless developed a great chamber music sensibility and tremendous reciprocal trust.
The programs devised for their upcoming U.S. dates are, as the New York Times observes, “well gauged to show off this great orchestra’s and Mr. Jansons’s own versatility.” Each showcases a work dating from 1888, the year of the orchestra’s founding. Mahler’s First Symphony of 1887-88 anchors the first, alongside Bartók’s Second Violin Concerto with Paganini Competition-winner Leonidas Kavakos as soloist, for concerts at the Kennedy Center (Feb 12) and Carnegie Hall (Feb 13). For the orchestra’s second Carnegie appearance (Feb 14), Strauss’s Tod und Verklärung of 1888-89 accompanies Bruckner’s monumental Seventh Symphony.
These U.S. engagements mark one of the many highpoints of the anniversary year, which sees the RCO make African and Australian debuts in the course of its most ambitious tour to date. Even those unable to attend concerts in any of the 43 featured cities will now be able follow the tour from home, with the launch of the orchestra’s new iPad app, “RCO Universe.” With mobile technology and a 360-degree camera, the app offers a virtual concert hall experience. It enables the public to enjoy the RCO concert from anywhere in the world at any time, and also to access additional videos, interviews, and background information.
Details of the Concertgebouw Orchestra’s three February U.S. appearances are provided below, and additional information is available at the web sites listed.
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and Mariss Jansons: US tour 2013:
Feb 12; Washington, DC
Kennedy Center (WPAS)
Bartók: Violin Concerto No. 2 (1937-38), with Leonidas Kavakos, violin
Mahler: Symphony No. 1 (1887-88)
Feb 13; New York, NY
Carnegie Hall
Bartók: Violin Concerto No. 2 (1937-38), with Leonidas Kavakos, violin
Mahler: Symphony No. 1 (1887-88)
Feb 14; New York, NY
Carnegie Hall
R. STRAUSS: Tod und Verklärung (1888-89)
BRUCKNER: Symphony No. 7 (1881-83, rev. 1885)

Return to Press Room