Accentus Music at Lucerne Festival

Author: Accentus Music

The opening concert with the LFO and Chailly features an all-Rachmaninoff program with star pianist Matsuev and will be streamed live on Arte Concert.

  • LFO, Chailly | Copyright: © Priska Ketterer, Lucerne Festival

    LFO, Chailly © Priska Ketterer, Lucerne Festival

  • Denis Matsuev | Copyright: ©

    Denis Matsuev ©

  • Riccardo Chailly | Copyright: © Sammy Hart, Accentus Music

    Riccardo Chailly © Sammy Hart, Accentus Music

Everything changed for Sergei Rachmaninoff after 1917. As a result of the October Revolution, power impinged directly on his life – and on his art. The new political conditions forced him to leave his Russian homeland and flee into exile in the West. In order to earn a living, he had to perform for the most part as a piano virtuoso, constantly touring Europe and America. Which meant he had hardly any time left over to compose.

The programme with which Riccardo Chailly and his LUCERNE FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA will open the 2019 Summer Festival orbits around this turning point in Rachmaninoff’s life, pairing the legendary Third Piano Concerto, written in Russia in 1909, with the melancholy Third Symphony, which he created as an émigré in Hertenstein near Lucerne in 1935-36. In both works, Rachmaninoff inspires listeners with his gift for melody, but, as Riccardo Chailly also remarks: “In fact his real hallmark is his harmonic thinking. You need only hear three chords and at once you can recognize his creative genius.”

The opening concert will be streamed live on Arte concert on 16 August 2019 at 18:30 and broadcast later this year.

Sergei Rachmaninoff
Piano Concerto No. 3
Vocalise in an arr. for Orchestra
Symphony No. 3

Lucerne Festival Orchestra
Denis Matsuev, piano
Riccardo Chailly, conductor

A production of Accentus Music in co-production with SRF, Arte, and NHK.

Production Company Accentus Music GmbH
Co-Production Company SRF
Co-Production Company Arte
Co-Production Company NHK
Director Ute Feudel
Composer Sergei Rachmaninoff
Orchestra / Band Lucerne Festival Orchestra
Conductor Riccardo Chailly
Executive Producer Paul Smaczny



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