The Swedish conductor Herbert Blomstedt is a phenomenon - as he approaches his 91th birthday, he is one of the oldest conductors in the world. And yet: on the rostrum he embodies such a vitality and energy, such dynamism and love of music-making, that he at once enthralls his musicians as well as his audiences.
Born in the USA to Swedish parents and educated in Uppsala, New York, Darmstadt and Basel, Herbert Blomstedt gave his conducting debut in 1954 with the Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and subsequently served as Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic, the Swedish and Danish Radio Orchestras and the Staatskapelle Dresden. Later, he became Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony, Chief Conductor of the NDR Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the Gewandhaus Orchestra Leipzig. His former orchestras in San Francisco, Leipzig, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Dresden as well as the Bamberg Symphony and the NHK Symphony Orchestra all honoured him with the title of Conductor Laureate.
Herbert Blomstedt holds several Honorary Doctorates, is an elected member of the Royal Swedish Music Academy and was awarded the German Federal Cross of Merit. Over the years, all leading orchestras around the globe have been fortunate to secure the services of the highly renowned Swedish conductor. At the age of over ninety, with enormous mental and physical presence, verve and artistic drive, he continues to be at the helm of all leading international orchestras.
The Subscription Concerts: When Otto Nicolai left Vienna permanently in 1847, the young enterprise of the Vienna Philharmonic almost collapsed, having lost in one person not only its artistic but also its administrative leader. Twelve years of stagnation followed before a new innovation brought about the long-awaited change of fortune. On January 15, 1860, the first of four subscription concerts took place in the Kärntnertortheater under the baton of then opera director Carl Eckert, and since that time, the "Philharmonic Concerts" have been staged without interruption. The only significant change in all those years was to switch from having one conductor for a complete season of subscription concerts to the present system of having various guest conductors within a season.
Sinfonie singulière in C major
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Symphony No. 7 in D minor, op. 70