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closing concert
Monday, September 23, 2019, 8.00 pm
World-Class Orchestras

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Heino Eller: Dawn, Symphonic PoemJean Sibelius: Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in D minor, Op. 47Anton Bruckner: Symphony No. 4 in E flat major, WAB 104, "Romantic"

To conclude this year’s Dvořák Prague Festival, we are welcoming Neeme Järvi to the Rudolfinum. The famed Estonian conductor, the Nestor of a conducting dynasty, and his “own” Estonian National Symphony Orchestra will be introducing to the festival public less familiar music by his compatriot Heino Eller as well as a great work of Nordic provenience, the Violin Concerto in D Minor by Jean Sibelius. The Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti, who is well known to the Czech public, will bring to the solo part the virtuosity and fervour for which she is noted. Drawing this year’s festival to a close will be the Fourth Symphony, subtitled Romantic, by Dvořák’s contemporary Anton Bruckner. Like Dvořák, Bruckner was a man of deep religious faith, and this is reflected in his musical legacy.

  • Dress code: black tie
  • Doors close: 22.10
  • End of concert: 22.10


Nicola Benedetti

The violinist Nicola Benedetti began to draw attention to herself as a child. She began playing violin at four years of age, and at eight she became the concertmistress of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. Two years later she began her studies at the Yehudi Menuhin School, and at eleven she began giving solo performances. At age sixteen she won the prestigious competition BBC Young Musician, performing Karol Szymanowski’s extraordinarily difficult First Violin Concerto. A year later she accepted an offer from the prestigious Deutsche Grammophon label, for which she has so far recorded works by Chausson, Saint-Saëns, Szymanowski, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Bruch, and Tchaikovsky. She recorded the Bruch and Tchaikovsky concertos with the Czech Philharmonic and Jakub Hrůša. Benedetti appears with the world’s top orchestras (e.g. London Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, BBC Symphony Orchestra) and conductors (Christoph Eschenbach, Valery Gergiev, Zubin Mehta et al).

Nicola Benedetti - violin

Neeme Järvi

The legendary Estonian conductor Neeme Järvi studied at the Leningrad Conservatoire. For years he was engaged at the Tallinn Opera, but his name is associated mainly with the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, which earned Europe-wide acclaim under his leadership. In 1980 maestro Järvi and his family emigrated from occupied Estonia to the United States, where he became the music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. He is especially active as a recording artist: for the important Chandos, Deutsche Grammophon, BIS, and EMI labels, he has so far made an incredible total of nearly 500 recordings. He has been a long-term proponent of the music of his compatriots Eduard Tubin and Arvo Pärt. He is also a great admirer of Czech music and musicians. During his tenure at the helm of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, his recordings included a complete set of Dvořák’s symphonies, and in 1994 he conducted Smetana’s Má vlast (My Homeland) at the opening of the Prague Spring Festival. He has been honoured with many awards including the Order of the Polar Star, conferred on him by King Carl XVI Gustav of Sweden.

For his musical legacy Neeme Järvi earned the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Grammophone Classical Music Awards in September 2018. In addition, he received the Barclay de Tolly Order of Merit in January 2019. With more than 500 recordings, Neeme Järvi is one of the conductors with most sound recordings. »Honorary Artistic Director for Life« of Estonian National Symphony Orchestra.

Estonian National Symphony Orchestra

The Estonian National Symphony Orchestra is an ensemble with nearly a century of tradition. It was established in 1926 in Tallinn as a chamber ensemble mainly for radio broadcasting. Gradually, however, it grew into a standard symphony orchestra and began playing an important role in Estonia’s cultural landscape. It played an especially important role in the 1950s, when it became the first orchestra in the Soviet Union to perform music by modern composers who had been rejected by the Stalinist regime, including Stravinsky, Schoenberg, Webern, and Orff. Another important chapter in the orchestra’s history was the tenure of its chief conductor Neeme Järvi from 1963 to 1979. During his era, the orchestra became internationally respected with a continually growing range of repertoire and of concert and recording activities. The ensemble has gone on several successful tours, including visits to Germany, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Finland, Poland, and Canada. Over the years, the orchestra has collaborated with many top conductors including Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Karel Ančerl, Neville Marriner, Kurt Masur, and Mariss Jansons.

Estonian National Symphony Orchestra

Rudolfinum, Dvořák Hall

The Rudolfinum is one of the most important Neo-Renaissance edifices in the Czech Republic. In its conception as a multi-purpose cultural centre it was quite unique in Europe at the time of its construction. Based on a joint design by two outstanding Czech architects, Josef Zítek and Josef Schultz, a magnificent building was erected serving for concerts, as a gallery, and as a museum. The grand opening on 7 February 1885 was attended by Crown Prince Rudolph of Austria, in whose honour the structure was named. In 1896 the very first concert of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra took place in the Rudolfinum's main concert hall, under the baton of the composer Antonín Dvořák whose name was later bestowed on the hall.