Identities – A Question of Perspective
The 2022/23 Season of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation
After two seasons that were dominated above all by the corona pandemic, the Berliner
Philharmoniker and their chief conductor Kirill Petrenko have planned a total of
117 symphony concerts for the 2022/23 season. Kirill Petrenko will conduct 47 of them, in
Berlin, at the Easter Festival in Baden-Baden and on tour. The Russian invasion of
Ukraine has presented new challenges for everyone; it is also a turning point for culture.
The Berliner Philharmoniker and Kirill Petrenko experienced that directly with their
Europakonzert on 1 May, which had to be moved from Odesa to Liepāja, Latvia, at short
notice. The orchestra and their chief conductor continue to appeal for donations to the
UN refugee assistance fund, of which they are ambassadors. In their concerts, they want
to use the unique qualities of music to promote solidarity and understanding beyond
borders and provide moments that give a sense of identity, meaning and strength.
Central theme of the season: “Identities”
Self-reflection is a socially virulent topic in the age of social media. It is work on myself,
the formative search for identity with the help of the key questions: “Who am I, who do I
want to be?” In earlier generations there were affiliations that often could hardly be
overcome in a lifetime, but much is in flux today. A person’s origins, religion and world
view have become less important, and even gender identity offers new possibilities for
self-determination. Composers were among the first to reflect on the role of the individual
in the world. Analysing one’s own personality was and is often the basis of a creative
process, from the Baroque period to the present. An early example is George Frideric
Handel’s first oratorio Il Trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno (The Triumph of Time and
Truth), which will be conducted by Emmanuelle Haïm in March 2023. Music of the 20th
century confronts the question of identity with particular intensity and complexity; thus, it
is a priority in the context of this season’s theme of “Identities”. The spectrum of works
presented ranges from Gustav Mahler’s Seventh Symphony, with which Kirill Petrenko
opens the season, to Richard Strauss’s opera Die Frau ohne Schatten (The Woman
without a Shadow) at the Easter Festival in Baden-Baden, also led by the chief
conductor, to the Turangalîla-symphonie by Olivier Messiaen, for which Simone Young
returns to the podium of the Berliner Philharmoniker. The thematic focus will be explored
from the four aspects of “origins”, “utopia”, “beliefs and values” and “love and sexuality”.
The musicians of the Berliner Philharmoniker will also examine “identities” in the series
Philharmonic Chamber Music. The four programmes of the discussion series
Philharmonic Discourse are also devoted to this theme.
Multi-season themes with chief conductor Kirill Petrenko
In addition to the focus of this season, Kirill Petrenko will continue to emphasize longrange planning in his programming, frequently drawing on programmatic traditions of the
Berliner Philharmoniker. One of these emphases is the orchestra’s core repertoire from
the German-Austrian musical tradition, which continues this season with Gustav Mahler’s
Seventh Symphony at the season opening, the Eighth Symphony by Ludwig van
Beethoven, Robert Schumann’s Fourth Symphony, the First Violin Concerto and two
sacred choral works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johannes Brahms’s Haydn
Particular emphasis will again be placed on the oeuvre of Felix Mendelssohn. This
season, Kirill Petrenko conducts his oratorio Elijah, sung by the Rundfunkchor Berlin
and outstanding soloists, including Christian Gerhaher in the title role.
Programmes with works by Russian composers will continue with Peter Tchaikovsky’s
Francesca da Rimini and Capriccio Italien as well as excerpts from Sergei Prokofiev’s
Romeo and Juliet. The latter is on the programme for the New Year’s Eve concert, during
which Jonas Kaufmann will sing arias from Italian operas by Giuseppe Verdi and other
For many years, Kirill Petrenko has championed works which are unjustly neglected and
rarely heard. During this season, they will include the F sharp major Symphony by Erich
Wolfgang Korngold, which Kirill Petrenko and the Berliner Philharmoniker will also take
on a major US tour, and Bernd Alois Zimmermann’s Symphony in One Movement. For
the first time in concerts with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Kirill Petrenko will conduct a
work by the avant-garde composer Iannis Xenakis, whose 100th birthday will be
celebrated in 2022: his Empreintes for orchestra.
In keeping with Philharmonic tradition, chief conductor Kirill Petrenko will lead three
world premieres. Superorganisms by the Czech composer Miroslav Srnka will be
premiered during the Biennale of the Berliner Philharmoniker. The world premiere of two
works by Julia Wolfe and Lisa Streich will follow in June. Kirill Petrenko thus continues
his collaboration with female composers, which began in 2021 with a work by Anna
As part of this season’s theme of “Identities”, Kirill Petrenko conducts two operas: first,
Luigi Dallapiccola’s one-acter The Prisoner, during an orchestra concert, and second,
Richard Strauss’s monumental work Die Frau ohne Schatten, as the featured opera at
the Easter Festival in Baden-Baden and in a concert performance in Berlin.
In search of a new Modernism – the second Biennale of the Berliner
Philharmoniker for music and art of the 50s and 60s
There are many preconceptions about the 1950s and 60s, but artistically they were a
time that is worth rediscovering today. The Biennale of the Berliner Philharmoniker is a
festival spanning genres and art forms which offers an opportunity to expand our view
with performances that go beyond the traditional concert format and to cooperate with
other cultural institutions in Berlin. The music and art of this era will be the centrepiece of
the Biennale in February 2023. The primary focus will be the composer György Ligeti,
whose 100th birthday will be celebrated in 2023. His works will be explored extensively in
the context of his time with orchestral concerts, chamber music concerts, readings, a
chanson concert, architectural tours and a symposium. Chief conductor Kirill Petrenko
will be joined by guest conductors Sir Simon Rattle and Alan Gilbert, pianist Bertrand
Chamayou, the string quartet Quatuor Diotima, cabaret singer Tim Fischer, actress
Sophie Rois and organist Jean-Baptiste Dupont. Regular guests of the Philharmonie
Berlin will also enhance the Biennale with their own programmes: the Deutsches
Symphonie-Orchester Berlin with their chief conductor Robin Ticciati, the RundfunkSinfonieorchester Berlin with conductor Karina Canellakis and the RIAS
Kammerchor – with a concert at the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. Two Late Nights
– one of them at St. Matthew’s Church – and a concert at the PalaisPopulaire of the
Deutsche Bank will also be devoted to this era.
Esa-Pekka Salonen as Composer in Residence
The Finnish composer and conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen is Composer in Residence
with the Berliner Philharmoniker during the 2022/23 season. Salonen wants to excite and
move listeners with his music and also reach the less-experienced concertgoer. He
describes his style of composing as rather spontaneous; he creates music by gathering
ideas and themes. Salonen rejects the distinction between classical and popular music;
he doesn’t want his compositions to be put into aesthetic pigeonholes. During the
2022/23 season, listeners can experience Esa-Pekka Salonen both as composer and
conductor with the Berliner Philharmoniker; he will conduct the German premiere of his
concerto for organ and orchestra himself. Olivier Latry will play the Schuke organ at the
Philharmonie Berlin, making his debut as soloist with the Berliner Philharmoniker. In
addition, Esa-Pekka-Salonen will present his own works at a Late Night with members of
the Berliner Philharmoniker. His sinfonietta Catch and Release, which was composed in
2006, will be heard during the Philharmonic Chamber Music series; at orchestral
concerts, his brief, overture-like work Helix will be interpreted by Santtu-Matias Rouvali
and Karawane for choir and orchestra, based on a poem by the Dadaist Hugo Ball, will
be conducted by Mikko Franck.
World premieres and German premieres
This season, there will be five world premieres and one German premiere at concerts of
the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation. In addition to the above-mentioned world
premieres of works by Miroslav Srnka, Julia Wolfe and Lisa Streich, conducted by
Kirill Petrenko, a new violin concerto by Toshio Hosokawa will be performed in March
under Paavo Järvi. The concerto is dedicated to the first concertmaster of the Berliner
Philharmoniker, Daishin Kashimoto, who will play the solo part. Toshio Hosokawa has
long been associated with the orchestra; they performed one of his works for the first
time during a composition competition 40 years ago. Another world premiere will be
presented at a concert of the Karajan Academy, when Susanna Mälkki conducts a trio
by former Academy composition scholar Hovik Sardaryan. Esa-Pekka Salonen
conducts the German premiere of his new concerto for organ and orchestra, as
Debuts, long-time friends and guests
Making their first appearances with the Berliner Philharmoniker are the English composer
and conductor Thomas Adès, during the Musikfest Berlin in September 2022, Maxim
Emelyanychev, who has attracted attention with his Baroque interpretations, in October
2022, and the young Finnish conductor Klaus Mäkelä in April 2023.
Among the regular guests returning to the conductor’s desk of the Berliner
Philharmoniker this season are honorary conductor Daniel Barenboim, who appears
with pianist Martha Argerich, a friend since childhood, together with the Berliner
Philharmoniker for the first time in January 2023. The programme will include Peter
Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto. Mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča joins him for his
second concert in June. Andris Nelsons also conducts the orchestra twice next season.
In December, he accompanies pianist Mitsuko Uchida in Schoenberg’s Concerto for
Piano and Orchestra, and, at the final concert of the season in the Waldbühne, tenor
Klaus Florian Vogt, who makes his debut with the Berliner Philharmoniker. Honorary
orchestra member Zubin Mehta appears with pianist Yefim Bronfman in June; among
other works, Peter Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony is on the programme. Former chief
conductor Sir Simon Rattle interprets works including György Ligeti’s Requiem, one of
the composer’s most important works, during the Biennale in February. Other longstanding friends on the orchestra podium will be Herbert Blomstedt, Marek Janowski,
Gustavo Dudamel, Iván Fischer, Daniel Harding, Paavo Järvi, Alan Gilbert,
François-Xavier Roth and Tugan Sokhiev. Christian Thielemann will spend an
eventful week at the Philharmonie Berlin in December. He first conducts Gustav Mahler’s
Rückert-Lieder with the Karajan Academy, where he was formerly a scholar, then the
Berliner Philharmoniker in a programme that includes Richard Strauss’s Four Last
Songs. The soloist for both concerts will be soprano Camilla Nylund.
The Finnish violinist Pekka Kuusisto, who is known for his unconventional
interpretations, appears for the first time as a soloist with the Berliner Philharmoniker in a
double debut with conductor Thomas Adès. Audiences will encounter a Scandinavian
combination at the debut of the Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson, who will also appear
in a recital from the Piano series, in concerts led by Santtu-Matias Rouvali. Venezuelan
pianist Sergio Tiempo makes his debut under his countryman Gustavo Dudamel. Other
soloists appearing with the orchestra include pianists Marc-André Hamelin and Cédric
Tiberghien as well as violinist Isabelle Faust and – returning for the first time since 2005
– violinist Joshua Bell. There will be many soloists from the orchestra’s own ranks this
season: principal violist Amihai Grosz, principal clarinettist Wenzel Fuchs, principal
bassoonist Stefan Schweigert, principal cellist Bruno Delepelaire and first
concertmasters Noah Bendix-Balgley and Daishin Kashimoto.
Eighteen vocalists make their debuts in orchestral concerts, including Sabine Devieilhe,
Wolfgang Ablinger-Sperrhacke, Franco Fagioli, Iestyn Davies and Elza van den
Chamber music series of the Berliner Philharmoniker
The chamber music series of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation offer listeners the
best opportunity to experience the orchestra musicians at close range. The Philharmonic
Chamber Music series takes up this season’s theme of “Identities” with seven concerts.
In addition to established chamber music ensembles such as the Philharmonic String
Quartet, the Philharmonia Piano Trio Berlin and Bolero Berlin, there are concerts with
various ensembles made up of orchestra members. The programmes will include works
such as Igor Stravinsky’s L’histoire du soldat with Nina Hoss as narrator, Arnold
Schoenberg’s Transfigured Night for string sextet and Fanny Hensel’s String Quartet in
E flat major.
In addition to the Late Night concerts with Esa-Pekka Salonen and during the Biennale,
there is a fourth concert, which concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley and principal violist
Amihai Grosz will devote to klezmer music.
The Philharmonic Salon, curated by the long-time principal cellist of the Berliner
Philharmoniker, Götz Teutsch, focuses on Dmitri Shostakovich, György Ligeti and
19th-century Berlin salons this season. Guests will include actor Ulrich Matthes.
The Easter Festival of the Berliner Philharmoniker in Baden-Baden
The Berliner Philharmoniker will continue their collaboration with the Festspielhaus
Baden-Baden at their annual Easter Festival for another three years, until 2025. After
the great success of The Queen of Spades this year, during the 2022/23 season, the
residency of the orchestra and their chief conductor Kirill Petrenko in Baden-Baden will
be dominated by performances of Richard Strauss’s opera Die Frau ohne Schatten, in a
production by Lydia Steier. The musical spectrum of the concerts will range from George
Frideric Handel with Emmanuelle Haïm to Ludwig van Beethoven’s Eighth Symphony
and Richard Strauss’s Four Last Songs with Diana Damrau and Kirill Petrenko to
Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony with Daniel Harding. The chamber music concerts with
members of the Berliner Philharmoniker will be devoted to the theme of Vienna from
1900 to 1930.
Tours and Europakonzert
The tours planned for this season, all of which will be conducted by Kirill Petrenko,
begin at the end of August with the festival tour to Salzburg, Lucerne and the London
Proms. After the traditional side trip to Frankfurt am Main in November, the orchestra
travels to the US for their first major US tour with Kirill Petrenko, including a residency at
Carnegie Hall in New York as well as concerts in Boston, Chicago, Ann Arbor
(Michigan) and concluding in Naples (Florida). The programmes will feature works by
Andrew Norman, Erich Wolfgang Korngold, Gustav Mahler’s Seventh Symphony and the
First Violin Concerto by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, with the orchestra’s concertmaster
Noah Bendix-Balgley as soloist. The Europakonzert at the Basilica Sagrada Família in
Barcelona on 1 May and the subsequent Spanish tour, which were originally planned for
2021, will take place this season. A Mozart concert including the “Coronation” Mass and
the Symphony No. 25 in G minor will be presented with the Catalan Orfeó Català choir
and vocal soloists. Further concerts will follow at the Palau de la Música in Barcelona and
the Auditorio Nacional de Música in Madrid, where Robert Schumann’s Fourth Symphony
will also be heard. Tour details are available in the attached calendar.
The Musikfest Berlin, which will be presented by the Berliner Festspiele from 27 August
to 19 September 2022 in collaboration with the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation, can
finally welcome international guests again this year. Thirty-three ensembles from Berlin
and all over the world will appear, including the Philadelphia Orchestra and the
Cleveland Orchestra, the Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam and the
Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig. A particular highlight of the programme will be the visit
of the National Gugak Center from Seoul, Korea, which will appear with a 500-year-old
Confucian ceremony that has been designated as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural
Heritage of Humanity since 2001. The Berliner Philharmoniker will present two
programmes, one with works by Iannis Xenakis, Bernd Alois Zimmermann and Luigi
Dallapiccola, conducted by Kirill Petrenko, and another with the debut of Thomas Adès,
who will conduct a composition of his own as well as works by Hector Berlioz and Gerald
Barry. Further details can be found on the attached information sheet.
Chamber music series with guests
The Belcea Quartet, the Jerusalem Quartet, Quatuor Diotima and the quartet Made in
Berlin will appear in the Quartet series, with programmes ranging from Mozart to Ligeti.
The Piano series will present Leif Ove Andsnes, Bertrand Chamayou, Víkingur
Ólafsson and Alexandre Tharaud with works from Jean-Philippe Rameau to John
Cage. In addition, there will be vocal recitals by Christian Gerhaher, Peter Mattei,
Marianne Crebassa, Michael Spyres and Marlis Petersen, Artist in Residence during
the 2019/20 season, who will present the continuation of her long-term project
Dimensions entitled The Worlds.
The residencies of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the Mahler Chamber
Orchestra continue in the concert series International Chamber Orchestras. They will be
led by, among others, two conductors from the Philharmonie’s neighbourhood: the chief
conductor designate of the Konzerthaus Orchestra, Joana Mallwitz, and the chief
conductor of the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Robin Ticciati.
The Bundesjugendorchester (National Youth Orchestra of Germany), which is
supported by the Berliner Philharmoniker, are regular guests and will give a concert
conducted by Christoph Altstaedt. The Junge Deutsche Philharmonie (Young
German Philharmonic Orchestra), conducted by Jonathan Nott, will appear with
Philharmonic principal hornist Stefan Dohr as soloist in works including György Ligeti’s
After the successful Baroque Festival at the beginning of this year, there will be further
opportunities to hear early music ensembles in the Philharmonie Berlin during the
2022/23 season. Five orchestral ensembles will appear in the Original Sound series:
Concerto Melante, which includes members of the Berliner Philharmoniker, La Voce
Strumentale, Jordi Savall’s Hespèrion XXI, L’Arpeggiata, with countertenor Philippe
Jaroussky, and Le Poème Harmonique.
20 years of the Education Programme of the Berliner Philharmoniker
The Education Programme of the Berliner Philharmoniker, which was initiated in 2002 by
then chief conductor Sir Simon Rattle with the generous support of the Deutsche Bank,
will be 20 years old this year. Beginning with the Open Day on 12 June 2022, the
celebration will last throughout the entire 2022/23 season. The series of Family
Concerts of the Berliner Philharmoniker moderated by chief conductor Kirill Petrenko
will continue with Claude Debussy’s La Mer and Francesca da Rimini by Peter
Tchaikovsky. Another Family Concert will be curated by Philharmonic violinist
Aleksandar Ivić and will be devoted to Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. This series
would not be complete without the popular Christmas Family Concert with orchestra
hornist Sarah Willis. The Family Concerts are aimed at everyone from the age of six
who is curious about classical music and would like to delve deeper into a work.
A series that is only offered as a subscription are the Interactive Concerts for children
from the ages of three to five, in which they can experience musical stories by listening
and participating. Chamber music ensembles consisting of members of the Berliner
Philharmoniker and the Karajan Academy, perform during these imaginative, childoriented concerts.
In order to make creative encounters possible for those who have not attended concerts
before – or could not attend – there is the new VeloStage, a mobile concert stage that is
used both in Berlin and for guest appearances in other locations.
The Karajan Academy, which celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2022, will be led by
outstanding guest conductors again during the 2022/23 season. The programming for the
Academy includes a broad spectrum of musical epochs, so that the training of the
scholars is varied and offers a wide range of experiences. While Sakari Oramo
concentrates on 20th-century music, Christian Thielemann presents a variety of works
from Richard Wagner to John Adams. On 28 May 2023, the 100th birthday of György
Ligeti, Susanna Mälkki conducts four of his works, the world premiere by Hovik
Sardaryan mentioned earlier and a work by Igor Stravinsky. Ton Koopman devotes
himself to the Baroque era, with music of Johann Sebastian Bach. One of the two current
conducting scholars, Christian Blex, will lead a concert in which, along with other works,
a chamber version of Gustav Mahler’s Fourth Symphony with soprano Camilla Tilling is
on the programme. The Academy’s Carte Blanche Concerts will also continue, a series
in which the scholars can be heard free of charge in the Chamber Music Hall.
Jazz, World and Co.
The series Jazz at Berlin Philharmonic, curated by Siggi Loch, celebrates its tenth
anniversary this season. It offers five concerts, including an Homage to Krzysztof
Komeda, a concert with Michael Wollny and Pierre-Laurent Aimard, which will be a
musical tribute to György Ligeti, and a concert entitled “Fantastic Women”, with Kadri
Voorand and the Rhoda Scott Duo, among others.
A new world music series, entitled World, brings international musicians together whose
repertoire is unique and trendsetting. During the first season, artists such as the Kurdish
singer Aynur, the cellist, singer and composer Abel Selaocoe and the fado singer
Carminho will appear.
Conductor, pianist and organist Sir Wayne Marshall returns to the Organ series, and
Arvid Gast, Olivier Latry, Jean-Baptiste Dupont and Isabelle Demers will also be
The four programmes of the Philharmonic Discourse, entitled “Utopia”, “Gender”, “Beliefs
and Values” and “Origins”, are directly related to this season’s thematic focus of
“Identities”. Discussion participants will include Luisa Neubauer, Margarete Stokowski
and Seyran Ateş.
The electronic music festival Strom also returns this season. Curator Stefan Goldmann
has again put together an exciting line-up of various artists from this field for the first
weekend in February.
Many of these projects would not be possible without the support of partners. Special
mention is due to the Deutsche Bank, which has supported the Berliner Philharmoniker
for more than 30 years, with a particular focus on the Education Programme since 2002.
It was a dependable partner particularly during the pandemic, for which we are especially
We would also like to thank the State of Berlin and the Federal Government, which
offset financial shortages during the pandemic with their support and through their grants
continue to provide the basis for the financing of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation.
Private sponsorship for more than 50 years: The Friends of the Berliner
Philharmoniker assist us in various ways, including enabling us to purchase instruments
and regularly supporting special projects, such as this year’s Europakonzert in Liepāja,
Media partners with whom the Berliner Philharmoniker have successfully collaborated for
many years will again be rbbKultur from the Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg,
Deutschlandfunk Kultur, arte und EuroArts.
Other long-standing supporters are our mobility partner, Mercedes Benz AG, and our
exclusive hotel partner, the Grand Hyatt Berlin.