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Berlin Phil’s academy is renamed Herbie

May 24, 2017 by norman lebrecht

4 comments.


Announcement:

From now on the Orchestra Academy of the Berliner Philharmoniker will be called the Karajan Academy of the Berliner Philharmoniker. The members of the association voted unanimously in favour of the name change proposed by the board, which has already been entered in the register of associations.

Peter Riegelbauer, manager of the Karajan Academy and double bassist with the Berliner Philharmoniker, explained: “The change of name is a tribute to the contribution of Herbert von Karajan, with whom the long success story of the Academy is inextricably linked.”

Karajan founded the Academy, the first institution of its kind in Germany, in 1972, out of concern about the next generation of musicians for the Berliner Philharmoniker. Peter Riegelbauer added: “The Karajan Academy is an unmistakable cultural brand. The clear reference to its founder is an important step towards the perpetuation of the Academy’s outstanding performance record in the future.”


Comments (4)

  1. Pedro says:

    Congratulations! Very good decision.

  2. Max Grimm says:

    While the Karajan Academy is certainly one of the best known orchestra academies, with a sizable portion of graduates holding top positions in top orchestras, I don’t believe that it was the “first institution of its kind”.
    For example, the Orchesterschule der Sächsischen Staatskapelle (Orchestra School of the Dresden State Opera, known in its present day form as “The Giuseppe Sinopoli Academy of the Staatskapelle Dresden”) was founded in 1922, on the initiative of Fritz Busch, after he and the orchestra grew dissatisfied with the Dresden Conservatory’s lacking efficiency in training and grooming future orchestral musicians, particularly potential new recruits for the SKD.
    One of the most famous graduates was a young Rudolf Kempe, who was an oboist in the orchestra’s school.

  3. Michael Schaffer says:

    I think the Orchesterschule in Dresden was more like an alternative conservatory with the typical extra subjects like piano, harmony, theory etc, whereas the Karajan-Akademie is a sort of postgraduate program focusing on bringing already very advanced student up to “top orchestra level”. The school in Dresden was shut down at some point during the NS period, I think, but not for any political reasons, simply because the Nazis at some point closed down all privately run schools.

  4. Max Grimm says:

    “[…]the Orchesterschule in Dresden was more like an alternative conservatory with the typical extra subjects like piano, harmony, theory etc […]”
    – Not according to the SKD, who described the function and purpose of its Orchesterschule in much the same way as HvK described the function and purpose of the Berliner Philharmoniker’s orchestra academy.

    “The school in Dresden was shut down at some point during the NS period, I think, but not for any political reasons, simply because the Nazis at some point closed down all privately run schools.”
    Yes, in 1938. Unfortunately, I do not know when the SKD established the subsequent training scheme.


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