The Bundesjugendorchester with Beethoven's “Eroica” and a Mark Barden Composition Commissioned for BTHVN2020

250 years of Beethoven - the Beethoven crescendo


Beethoven meets Avantgarde. Das Bundesjugendorchester hat sich zum Beethoven-Jahr eine besondere Programmkonzeption ausgedacht: Es integriert in die Aufführung der Eroica ‒ eine der meistgespielten Symphonien des Jubilars ‒ zwei Stücke von zeitgenössischen Komponisten: Brett Deans Testament sowie ein neues Werk für Orchester und E-Gitarre, das Mark Barden im Auftrag des Deutschen Musikrats für das Bundesjugendorchester geschrieben hat.

Brett Dean, formerly a violist in the Berliner Philharmoniker and today one of the most successful composers of his generation, was inspired by Beethoven’s “Heiligenstadt Testament”. One important inspiration for this work was the mental image of Beethoven’s quill pen scurrying quietly but audibly over the paper. Quotes from the First Rasumowsky Quartet also play an important role. Brett Dean originally composed the piece for twelve violas, but later developed a version for the classical orchestra line-up. Mark Barden, a student of Rebecca Saunders, Mathias Spahlinger and Jörg Widmann, considers sound a physical phenomenon. It is not his goal to play with musical material, but rather to collect sounds and put them together. His music is highly virtuoso and noise-like at the same time. “Mark Barden’s work represents a staging of the failures that occur just before and beyond the limits of what the body can hear and what it can enact”, as was described in the tribute from the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, whose Composer’s Prize the Berlin-based American composer received in 2015. Although we consider him classical today, when Beethoven composed his Third Symphony in 1803, he was one of the most avant-garde composers of his time. The heroic spirit of the work, his innovative handling of the material and the bold harmonies seemed revolutionary and outrageously modern. The Bundesjugendorchester, which brings together Germany’s most gifted young instrumentalists and comes to Berlin once a year at the invitation of the Philharmonic, will present this unusual programme conducted by Christoph Altstaedt.


Berliner Philharmonie
Herbert-von-Karajan-Straße 1
10785 Berlin

Admission prices

Tickets between €8.00 and €32.00

Ticket information

Ticket Office of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation:
Tel.: +49 30 254 88 999 (Monday – Friday: 9:00 am – 4:00 pm)
Box office of the Philharmonie: Monday – Friday: 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays: 11:00 am – 2:00 pm


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