The 12 Cellists

The 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic

Debussy | Ellington | Piazzolla et al.

Tue, 31.08. | 19.30 | No. 211323

KKL Luzern, Concert Hall

Vergangenes Konzert

Prices (CHF)

CHF 120 90 60 30

Summer Festival

10.08.-12.09. 2021



    Claude Debussy (1862–1918)
    La cathédrale engloutie
    Clair de lune
    Brett Dean (*1961)
    Twelve Angry Me
    Duke Ellington (1899–1974) / Juan Tizol
    Marijn Simons (*1962)
    It's Raining Skyscrapers Op. 71 No. 1
    Krzesimir Debski (*1953)
    Cello Animation
    Astor Piazzolla (1921–1992)
    Buenos Aires hora cero
    Tres minutos con la realidad

    “There is no such thing as light or serious music, there is only good or bad music,” Leonard Bernstein once observed. The 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic, who will celebrate their 50th anniversary in the 2021-22 season, have taken him at his word. In their programs, the “Fabulous Twelve” combine the seemingly incompatible: they perform new works composed especially for them, such as Brett Dean’s Twelve Angry Men, written for the ensemble’s 25th anniversary (the group by now includes “angry women”). They will play refined arrangements of classics but also devote themselves with fervor to the tango, French chansons, and hits by the Beatles. The 12 Cellists make music without blinkers, with a sense of joyful openness. But whatever they play in these musical border crossings turns into a triumph of sound, of the full, rich cello sonority in which one can simply revel. And since the twelve musicians are not lacking in spirit and playfulness, they offer the audience everything that good music can.

    You can purchase the digital concert program here.

    The 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic

    The 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic will celebrate their 50th birthday in the 2021-22 season. Their formation owed much to the recording of Julius Klengel’s Hymnus for 12 cellos that the cello group of the Berlin Philharmonic made for ORF in March 1972. The appeal of this collective of cellists seemed so promising to the musicians that they decided to form a permanent ensemble. Their repertoire consists of arrangements of classical works and original compositions commissioned by the 12. Boris Blacher was the first contemporary composer to write a new work for the ensemble; others who have been commissioned to compose original pieces for the 12 Cellists to date include Jean Françaix, Iannis Xenakis, Günter Bialas, Wolfgang Rihm, Brett Dean, Frangis Ali-Sade, Tan Dun, Kaija Saariaho, and Sofia
    Gubaidulina. The ensemble is also a pioneer in the field of crossover and has performed arrangements of songs by the Beatles, gospel music, tangos, jazz, and film compositions, thus ensuring a diversity of programming that appeals to audiences beyond the classical music community. The numerous CDs that document their artistic work have won no fewer than three Echo Klassik awards, and several have made the charts. In addition to concert appearances all over the world, the 12 Cellists are involved in charity events for people in need. And they are a prominent musical ambassador for Berlin: the 12 have played for the American president, have accompanied the German president on state visits, and have been guests of the Japanese emperor and empress on several occasions.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 30 August 1980 in works by David Funk, Julius Klengel, Helmut Eder, Rudolf Kelterborn, Heitor Villa-Lobos, and Boris Blacher.

    July 2021

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