The silver subscription of Cankarjev dom has long been one of the most popular concert cycles in Slovenia. It is intended for chamber music, both the iron repertoire and conceptually fresher, innovative, even boldly designed concert programs featuring internationally established performers and bands. For the introduction of the new season, which again brings an extremely diverse range of excellent performers and musical works, they will Emmanuel Ceysson and Tartini String Quartet.
In September 2020, Ceysson became the new solo harpist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, led by the charismatic Gustavo Dudamel, after winning an anonymous audition against seventy other candidates. Prior to that, he was the first harpist of two prominent opera orchestras for a decade and a half, first of the Paris National Opera, where he began his service at the age of twenty-two, and then for five seasons at the New York Metropolitan Opera.
In his native France, at the tender age of sixteen, he was unanimously accepted to the prestigious Paris Conservatoire, in the following ten years he won several of the most important international awards and recognitions: the gold medal at the American International Harpist Competition (2004), first place at the New York Young Concert audition Artists, 2006) and first prize at the high-profile ARD competition in Munich (2009). This opened the door for the musician to take a solo path to prominent concert stages, such as the Zankel chamber venue of Carnegie Hall in New York, Wigmore Hall in London, Gaveau Hall, Munich Gasteig, Vienna Concert Hall and Hyogo Concert Hall. He performs as a soloist with orchestras such as the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, the German Symphony Orchestra, the RAI National Symphony Orchestra of Turin, the National Orchestra of Lyon and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Bogotá.
Released on labels such as Naxos, BR klassik, Naïve, Aparte and Alpha Classics, his discography is extensive, critically acclaimed and includes both solo, chamber and concert repertoire. As a soloist, orchestral musician, professor – from 2021 he also teaches at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music – and not least with the help of his extensive and varied discography, Ceysson frees his instrument from entrenched stereotypes of an angelic but marginal orchestral instrument and presents it in different lights, as an expressive medium of a luxurious palette of emotions and sound colors. “Music comes first! No matter what instrument you play, it should always be a tool, a means to achieve deep expression and emotion… I must admit that the sound of the harp fascinated me as a 6-year-old boy, and later its majestic form and hypnotic dance: the harp deserves a place at the forefront of classical instruments! Since then, it has become my struggle, and I have been fortunate to have many opportunities to share my immense pleasure in evoking the singing of the strings.” Thus Emmanuel Ceysson, who this time will join forces with the Tartini String Quartet on the Gallus Hall stage.
The group has been one of the most representative Slovenian chamber music ensembles for four decades and will perform in the lineup Miran Kolbl and Romeo Drucker – violin, Aleksandar Milošev – viola and Miloš Mlejnik – cello. In 1983, the four leaders of the string groups of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra decided to test their rich technical knowledge and musical experience in a string quartet. From the first beginnings as the String Quartet of the Slovenian Philharmonic to today under the well-established name of the Tartini String Quartet, the band has undergone few changes. Former primarius Darko Linarić was succeeded by Črtomir Šiškovič and current first violinist Miran Kolbl, while violist Cvetko Demšar was replaced in 1990 by Aleksandar Milošev. Cellist Miloš Mlejnik and second violinist Romeo Drucker are founding members of the quartet.
In its performance so far, especially as part of the concerts from the Evenings of Chamber Music cycle, the Tartini Quartet has developed a convincing and fresh approach, which is also reflected in the openness of the repertoire. When creating the concert schedules, the members do not give up the parts of the iron repertoire of this genre, but they choose them carefully and thoughtfully, so that they also mature interpretatively. Medse also invites renowned Slovenian and foreign musicians, which complements their program in an original way. Irena Grafenauer, Stanko Arnold, Radovan Vlatković, Mate Bekavac, Lovro Pogorelić, Maria Graf, Gary Karr, Franco Gulli, Enrica Cavallo, Bruno Giuranna, Rocco Filippini, Davide Formisano and many others have performed with them, and this list will now supplemented by Emmanuel Ceysson.
As the only Slovenian chamber ensemble, the Tartini String Quartet was a permanent guest of Mozart’s serenades in Salzburg for many years. He also confirmed his high value in important musical centers such as Barcelona, Venice, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Vienna, Genoa, Geneva, Prague, Salzburg, Milan, Munich, Turin…
The quartet recorded for various record labels and radio and television companies at home and around the world and recorded a series of CDs with works by Slovenian and foreign composers. Among the latest recording achievements is an album Quattro Sonata à Quattroa recording of four sonatas for string quartet by Giuseppe Tartini, released by the ensemble on the 250th anniversary of the composer’s death.
As written by the organizers of the opening concert for the silver subscription, the stylistically diverse and inventive program offers “a musical journey into the lesser known, exploring the luxury of contemplation of nature and surrendering to it in order to finally find the way to the light”. The opening Fantastic Tale for Harp and String Quartet certainly belongs to the better-known works of the program André Caplet, who originally conceived the work as a symphonic poem or legend for harp and orchestra based on the famous short story The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe, Hindemithova Sonata for harp ter Debussy’s Sacred and Secular dance for harp and strings rounding off the concert schedule. Most of the remaining works are classified as musical rarities, such original works as the Harpalycé with more modern means of expression of Marius ConstantThe story of the harpist and composer Henriette Renié, who sought inspiration in the love poetry of Charles Leconte de Lisle, is shared by The Landlady in the Tower and Towards the Forest Spring by French music creators Gabriel Fauré respectively Marcel Tournieras well as transcriptions of compositions signed by the baroque keyboard virtuoso Louise-Claude Daquin, Franz Liszt and Mikhail Glinka.
The silver subscription will continue already on October 2, when members of the famous band will be guests at the 2nd May subscription concert in the Gallus hall of Cankarjev dom Ensemble Modern, who has been considered one of the greatest ambassadors of contemporary music for more than four decades and is a two-time Grammy nominee. She will lead him Lucie Leguayshe will perform in a solo role Nika Gorič, and the program will be filled entirely with the works of the most prominent Slovenian creators of contemporary music. Quantum Mechanics (2014) will sound Petre Strahovnikand Substitution anonymous was created in 2007 Vinko GlobokarTECHNO (2022) Matej Boninwho weaved poetry into the composition Ana PepelnikStump the Guesser (2021) Nina Šenk and The Book of Bodies Vita Žuraj to poetry Aleš Štegra. The conceptual starting point of the upcoming project is the traditional Frankfurt Book Fair 2023, of which Slovenia will be the guest of honor, and the exclusively Slovenian musical program will be performed by Ensemble Modern in Bamberg, Germany.