Luka Sorkočević (1734-1789)
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)
Blagoje Bersa (1873-1934)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
An invitation for a classical night which begins with a piece by Luka Sorkočević (1734-1789), Croatian important composer born in Dubrovnik. His Symphony n. 3 in D major was written between 1756 and 1760 and reflects the European classic influences of the day where Gluck and Haydn were the prominent exponents that Sorkočević met in Vienna during his stay there as ambassador of the Imperial Court. Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) composed between 1781 and 1765 the three movements in sonata form of his Cello Concerto n. 1 in C major. This work was lost for centuries but was found in 1961 at the Prague National Museum and was dedicated to Franz Weigl, Haydn’s long-time friend and cellist at the Nicolaus Esterházy’s court. Jasen Chelfi will be the soloist of this concert. Another Croatian composer also born in Dubrovnik was Blagoje Bersa (1873-1934) who studied in Zagreb and at the Vienna Conservatory with Julius Epstein. Idila (Idyll) was written in 1903 and is subtitled Il giorno delle nie nozze, op. 25b. The Symphony in C major n. 41, ‘Jupiter’, was the last symphony composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791). It is also the longest and the more complex symphony of this Austrian composer who during the 1788 Summer completed it only in 16 days. Mozart would die on Vienna three years later and it is not known if the symphony was ever performed in Mozart’s lifetime.
The Zagreb Philharmonic is an orchestra boasting a 146-year tradition of distinguished performing in Zagreb and Croatia. It has been a promoter of the art of music across Croatia as well as the country's cultural ambassador in the world. As one of the trademarks of the city it operates in, the music institution that boasts a long and notable tradition embodies the image of Zagreb as a Central European urban center of music, art and culture. The Orchestra started performing in the year 1871 and in 1920 it got its current name. Ever since that time, it has continually brought to Croatia's capital the best classical music. Its history has been shaped by first-class principal conductors such as Friedrich Zaun, Milan Horvat, Lovro von Matačić, Mladen Bašić, Pavle Dešpalj, Kazushi Òno, Pavel Kogan, Aleksander Rahbari and Vjekoslav Šutej. Many distinguished conductors and composers including Leopold Stokowski, Paul Kletzki, Sir Malcom Sargent, Kurt Sanderling, Carlo Zecchi, Jean Martinon, Milan Sachs, Krešimir Baranović, Boris Papandopulo, Stjepan Šulek, Milko Kelemen, Igor Stravinski, Krzysztof Penderecki and others have performed with the Zagreb Philharmonic. Among the Philharmonic's more recent guest conductors are Dmitri Kitajenko, Lorin Maazel, Leopold Hager, Uroš Lajovic, Valery Gergiev, Marko Letonja, Sir Neville Marriner… The Orchestra has had the honour of hosting famous soloists such as Yehudi Menuhin, Antonio Janigro, Mstislav Rostropovich, Leonid Kogan, Luciano Pavarotti, Ivo Pogorelić, Montserrat Caballe, Alexandar Rudin, David Garrett, Julian Rachlin, Shlomo Mintz... The 2011/12 season was marked by strengthened co-operation with maestro Dmitri Kitajenko, one of the greatest conductors of our times. His taking up of the position of music advisor to the Zagreb Philharmonic marked a new era in the Orchestra's history providing it with fresh artistic enthusiasm, outstanding musical achievements, as well as some major concert and discography projects planned for the future. In July 2012 at Arena Zagreb, the Zagreb Philharmonic and the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra with eight vocal soloists and chorus composed of nearly a thousand singers from the Croatia and Slovenia conducted by famous russian conductor Valery Gergiev, performed a musical mega-spectacle Symphony of Thousands by Gustav Mahler. The Zagreb Philharmonic has performed in almost all European countries, in Russia, the United States of America, Mexico, Japan and Oman. It has regularly participated at Dubrovnik Summer Festival and Music Biennale Zagreb. The Zagreb Philharmonic dedicates special attention to bringing classical music closer to children and to engaging their interest, with its annual Children and Youth Music Week featuring interactive stage and music projects at the Lisinski, attracting a large number of young people of all ages. Traditional collaboration with the Zagreb Music Academy is an important activity of the orchestra, which gives future professional musicians an opportunity to prove their abilities and excellence on a big stage, thus winning their position within an orchestra. Over the past decades, the Zagreb Philharmonic has encouraged artistic creation by performing, staging first performances and recording numerous works by Croatian authors. Particular attention has been devoted to young talented musicians, the best of whom receive The Best Young Musician of the Year award. Zagreb Philharmonic opens its doors to all who would like to take a peek at Orchestra and to get to know it from inside - under the slogan "Getting to know our orchestra means- geeting to love it!“ the Orchestra nourishes its Doors - Open Day. In February 2016, Orchestra has performed at the most prestigious American music address, New York's Carnegie Hall. Zagreb Philharmonic concerts in the New Year's morning in Salzburg, have become an indispensable part of its concert season. The Philharmonic also boasts a rich output of sound recordings released by both Croatian and foreign (e.g. Virgin Classics, Deutsche Grammophon, Naxos) recording companies, and a large number of awards, among them the Croatian discography award Porin. Under the leadership of its new chief conductor Mo David Danzmayr and Maestro Dmitri Kitaenko, its artistic advisor, the Zagreb Philharmonic continues to pursue its successful concert activity.
Jasen Chelfi (Zagreb, 1979) began his studies at the Zagreb Academy of Music with Nikola Ružević, continued with Andrej Petrač and received bachelor's degree in 2001. During his musical education he collaborated with Valter Dešpalj, Ralph Kirschbaum, Steven Isselis, Silvio Sondeckin, David Gregorian, Vladimir Perlin, Leslie Parnas, Philip Muller and Boris Pergamenchir and currently he is continuing studies with Mario Brunello. Since 2002 he has been a member of the Zagreb Philharmonic, at first as an assistant principal cellist and since two years ago as the principal cellist. As a soloist and with the Philharmonic, he performed in many of the concert halls – Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Wiena, Gewandhaus in Leipzig, Tokyo Opera, Mexico City Opera, Konzerthaus in Luzern, Mozarteum in Salzburgm, Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto, Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre of Canadian Opera and many others. He won many awards for solo performances and also as a chamber musician. He teaches, since 2010, ate the Pučišća Summer School at Brač Island. Recognized with awards several times thoughout his career, for interpretations as soloist and as member of chamber music orchestras, he is an active member of Ensembles Cantus and Acoustic Project and a member of the association Diaphason, through which he participates at the Indépendant Musical Festival Diapason
Avi Ostrowsky is a music director originally from Israel. He studied with Gary Bertini and Mordechai Seter in the Rubin Academy of Tel Aviv. He then studied with Hans Swarowsky in the Vienna Academy of Music and with Franco Ferrara in Italy. While studying in Vienna his talent was rapidly recognized by his teachers which permitted him to coast through the three year programme in only two years. In 1968, he won the first prize in the Nikolai Malko contest in Copenhagen. That same year he became artistic director of the Haifa Symphony Orchestra, position which he held until 1972. In 1970 he established the Israel Kibbutz Orchestra, which he directed until 1974 and again from 1998 to 2003. In 1973 he founded the Beer Sheva Sinfonietta and directed it until 1978 when he was named director of the Antwerp Philharmonic Orchestra, position which he held until 1984. From 1989 to 1993 he led the Radio Norway Symphonica. Since then he has been invited to conduct many orchestras around the world. London Philharmonic Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, OFUNAM, Amsterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, South African National Youth Orchestra and Hungarian National Philharmonic are among the ones interested in his working with them. He toured Australia with the London Philharmonic Orchestra. He has recorded Stravinsky's Le sacre du printemps and Petrushka as well as the Mahler and Schubert symphonies and Berlioz's "Symphonie fantastique", among others. He currently lives near Tel-Aviv and occasionally resides in Brussels. He often travels to Mexico City where he is frequently invited to conduct the OFUNAM.