From 6 to 13 May 2016 the Bamberg Symphony – Bavarian State Philharmonic is holding The Mahler Competition for the fifth time. The Competition will be open to the public from 9 May. Admission to the open rounds in the Bamberg Concert Hall is free.

The Competition takes place over several rounds. The winner of the First or highest Prize will be presented to the public at a concert with the Bamberg Symphony in Bamberg’s Concert Hall on 13 May 2016. The programme will consist of works from the Competition’s repertoire by Georg Friedrich Haas, Henri Dutilleux, Gustav Mahler and Jörg Widmann.

This year, there were 381 applicants from 64 countries. 14 candidates have been invited to Bamberg, 11 male and 3 female. They come from Venezuela, Romania, Chile, China, Poland, Japan, Germany, Russia, New Zealand, South Korea, Singapore and the USA. They will appear before a jury of leading conductors, composers, performers and managers: The members of the jury are Jonathan Nott, President of the Jury and Principal Conductor of the Bamberg Symphony, Marina Mahler, the composer’s granddaughter and Honorary Jury Member, Marcus Rudolf Axt, Chief Executive of the Bamberg Symphony, the conductors Jiří Bělohlávek, John Carewe and Sir Neville Marriner, the conductor and singer Barbara Hannigan, the conductor and composer Jörg Widmann, the President and CEO of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Deborah Borda, the artist consultant Martin Campbell-White, the Provost and Dean of the Juilliard School Ara Guzelimian, and Boris-Alexander Jusa, a member of the Bamberg Symphony.

The Mahler Competition started in 2004 with Gustavo Dudamel’s decisive win, and ever since it has been ‘the place to go’ for young conductors from all over the world. Held by the Bamberg Symphony every three years, the Competition has become a permanent part of the Orchestra’s work in the field of music training. With its commitment to high artistic quality it has set new standards and counts among the world’s most important events of its kind. As a platform for highly talented artists, it offers all participants crucial career boosts and opportunities, regardless of the outcome. The winner in 2013, Lahav Shani, was launched on a career that has led him so far to orchestras such as the Israel Philharmonic, the Staatskapelle Berlin, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the Wiener Symphoniker and the Gürzenich Orchestra. Ainārs Rubiķis, winner of the 2010 Competition, was Music Director of Novosibirsk Opera from 2012 to 2014, has worked with orchestras in St. Petersburg, Toronto, Budapest and Brussels, among others, and has conducted opera productions in Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre, Chicago’s Lyric Opera and Barcelona’s Liceu.

The Competition’s set repertoire includes works by Gustav Mahler, Joseph Haydn, Henri Dutilleux, Anton Webern and Jörg Widmann, as well as a new work by Georg Friedrich Haas, commissioned by the Bamberg Symphony.

The Mahler Competition 2016 is supported by generous donations from the Friends of the Bamberg Symphony, the company Brose Fahrzeugteile GmbH & Co. KG in Hallstadt and the Oberfrankenstiftung.


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