Berlin Phil wants your Saturday night

Berlin Phil wants your Saturday night


norman lebrecht

April 18, 2020

The players have scheduled a free weekly concert:

The Philharmonie Berlin remains closed for the time being, but the Berliner Philharmoniker will continue to play digitally. As of now, the orchestra invites you to a concert programme every Saturday at 7pm in the Digital Concert Hall….

The Berlin Phil Series will be available exclusively in the Digital Concert Hall. The theme for the start of the series on Saturday, 18 April 2020, at 7pm Berlin time (1pm New York; 2am Tokyo (+1)), is France. Under the title “Vive la France” Emmanuel Pahud, flute, Amihai Grosz, viola, and Marie-Pierre Langlamet, harp, will play works by Jean-Philippe Rameau, Claude Debussy, Jacques Ibert and Maurice Ravel. The main work of the evening is a 2009 recording of Debussy’s La Mer under the direction of Claudio Abbado. The stream will be repeated on Sunday, 19 April 2020 at 1pm Berlin time (7am New York, 8pm Tokyo).

The following week, on 25 April 2020, Noah Bendix-Bagley, first concertmaster of the Berliner Philharmoniker, will present a programme entitled “An American in Berlin”. Chamber music pieces for violin and piano by George Gershwin, Amy Beach and John Corigliano are combined with orchestral works by American composers: the programme includes Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story, works by Charles Ives and John Adams – and even music from cartoons.


  • fflambeau says:

    Great idea. One of the only good things to come from the Coronavirus is that musicians and groups everywhere are doing this.

    So far, my two favorites: (a free high definition, opera DVD every night, the productions are international and of very high standards) and the more intimate featuring violinist Daniel Hope and guests playing from Hope’s home in Berlin: google Hope@home. He plays a very wide repertoire and everything is beautiful. I hope these broadcasts are very good too.

  • Mustafa Kandan says:

    The situation is still horrible in Europe, including in Germany. In Australia things are infinitely better, but borders cannot open until this problem is resolved globally. I cannot believe just a few months ago Brexit was the major crisis that was occupying me in that part of the world, now in hindsight it seems like a side issue, rather trivial in comparison to what we are experiencing now. Will I ever have the opportunity again to attend a concert in the Philharmonie in Berlin, something that I used to take for granted every year?

    • Brian v says:

      Hopefully we will get back to normal it may take a long time.
      Fortunately I have a lot of cds and good quality naim CD player
      And speakers.

    • Sue Sonata Form says:

      There is a silver lining; we all get to see what the world would look like with far less carbon emissions. Planes parked on tarmacs, zero international travel, businesses gone to the wall and thousands unemployed. It’s the eco-nirvana.

    • Tamino says:

      Nothing is horrible. Why are you spreading fear and fake news?
      Things in Germany and Austria are quite under control.
      The overall mortality is not higher as usual.
      Yes people die, but in numbers as always.
      Hospitals are dealing with the problem and are not over capacity.
      Being cautious and level headed is the way to handle this.
      Being paranoid and projecting worst case scenarios is not.
      Arguably the bigger pandemic is inflationary misinformation.

    • Saxon Broken says:

      Germany and Austria are doing reasonably well. I am sorry, but you need to calm down. Concerts will be back before too long, and borders will reopen gradually.

      Since many have already had the virus in Europe (some suggest as many as one-in-four in Britain), it will be fairly simple to gradually end the lockdown without the virus getting out of control. The place that has a problem is Australia, since very few people have been infected there, there is no immunity in the population.

  • Noah Bendix-Balgley says:

    Hi Norman- just a small clarification. We will be presenting the chamber music from the stage of the Philharmonie, rather than our homes.
    I’m looking forward to playing for our online audience and wish everyone good health and spirits!

  • Tom Phillips says:

    Unfortunately these concerts are only “free” to those who have not already used up their BPO Digital Concert Hall 30 day “voucher”.

  • Skiddkid says:

    What a wonderful life. RIP