Ivan Fischer shakes it up, inviting audience to sit inside the orchestra

Ivan Fischer shakes it up, inviting audience to sit inside the orchestra


norman lebrecht

October 29, 2014

The restless Hungarian maestro’s latest experiment is a concert series starting next week at the Konzerthaus Berlin in which certain players in the orchestra vacate their seats for audience members. Here’s the plan:

Unser Chefdirigent Iván Fischer ist immer für neue Ideen gut. Für diese Saison hat er sich etwas ausgedacht, das es so noch nie gegeben hat. Denn der Titel der Reihe „Mittendrin“ ist hier wortwörtlich zu verstehen! Nehmen Sie mitten im Orchester Platz, die Musiker des Konzerthausorchesters rücken extra für Sie auseinander. Und dann können Sie hautnah Musik erleben. Vielleicht spüren Sie sogar diese ganz besondere Atmosphäre, die zwischen den Mitgliedern des Orchesters und unserem Chefdirigenten beim Musizieren entsteht. Am Ende können Sie auf jeden Fall sagen: Ich war mittendrin statt nur dabei!


We like this idea. Book here for the ‘Mittendrin’ concerts.

ivan fischer piano sleighbells


  • Max Grimm says:

    He’s done this with the Budapest Festival Orchestra as well.


  • Daniel Raiskin says:

    Dear all,
    as much as I respect and admire Maestros Fischer work and his often brilliant ideas, I must point out that Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie in Koblenz has been doing, and indeed successfully, the same thing for the past 10 years! Our series is called “Orchester Mittendrin”, which is the same. I know for a fact that many other orchestras offer the similar projects. Moreover, once a year we offer ALL music lovers and amateur instrumentalists to join the ranks of orchestra in rehearsing and performing a piece of music, chosen of course with an eye on difficulty grade. I am happy our colleagues in Berlin have taken on the same idea, but the issue of originality stays wide open. I would not claim, ours was first, but it proved to be a good one. Colleagues from PR should know better!
    Daniel Raiskin, Chief Conductor & Artistic Director
    Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie

    • Max Grimm says:

      There have been a few orchestras that I know of, who have been doing this. In Germany alone, I know of the NDR Sinfonieorchester and the WDR Sinfonieorchester. I was pointing out that it wasn’t the “restless Hungarian maestro’s latest experiment” but that Mr. Fischer had been doing this for some time now.
      As for the “colleagues from PR” knowing better, they (like most) probably don’t know anything except the Deutsche Eck (and maybe BUGA) when it comes to good ole Kowelenz.