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R. Strauss Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks
Mozart Arias from Figaro, Idomeneo and La finta giardiniera
Mahler Symphony No4

Thomas Søndergård Conductor
Mari Eriksmoen Soprano

6.45PM: RSNO Viola Katherine Wren in conversation with RSNO Music Director Thomas Søndergård in the Clyde Foyer.



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Thomas Søndergård

Thomas Søndergård Conductor

Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård is Music Director of Royal Scottish National Orchestra, following six seasons as Principal Guest Conductor. He served as Principal Conductor of BBC National Orchestra of Wales (BBCNOW) from September 2012 – August 2018, and prior to this, as Principal Conductor and Musical Advisor of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra for three seasons.

He has conducted many leading orchestras, including Chicago Symphony, London Philharmonic, BBC Symphony, Royal Concertgebouw, London Symphony, Philharmonia Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony, Danish National Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Bamberger Symphoniker; leading tours with Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and European Union Youth Orchestra; Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Netherlands Philharmonic, Luxembourg Philharmonic, Brussels Philharmonic; Swedish Radio Symphony, Finnish Radio Symphony, City of Birmingham Symphony, Sydney Symphony, Toronto Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Houston Symphony and Seattle Symphony.

The 2019/20 season includes debuts with Cleveland Orchestra, NDR Radiophilharmonie Hannover and Detroit Symphony Orchestra. He makes return visits to Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, the Bayerische Staatsoper orchestra, visits the Guildhall Orchestra for performances of Mahler Symphony No. 7 at the Barbican Centre and embarks on a Korean tour with the orchestra of the Royal Danish Opera. Highlights with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra this season include Berg’s Seven Early Songs with Karen Cargill, Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde joined by Simon O'Neill and Jane Irwin, recording work, a European tour and performances of the Verdi Requiem.

Highlights of recent seasons include debuts with Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic, and Orchestre National de France, and many re invitations, including Atlanta Symphony, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Danish National Symphony, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Bayerische Staatsoper (Turandot), Deutsche Oper Berlin (Berlioz’s Romeo and Juliet), Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, Gurzenich-Orchester Köln, SWR Baden-Baden, Sydney Symphony, Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse and Norwegian Opera. Recent highlights with RSNO include tours to China and the United States, premieres of new commissions and Marsalis’ Violin Concerto with Nicola Benedetti.

A passionate supporter of the music of Carl Nielsen, his most recent programme with Swedish Radio Symphony (Symphony No. 5) received wide praise as “equal of the great pioneers of Nielsen interpretation… It’s hard to imagine a finer performance of this remarkable symphony” (Dagens Nyheter). As part of the 2015 anniversary celebrations of both Sibelius and Nielsen he conducted a wide variety of their works with many leading orchestras. In 2019 he participated in a special concert to celebrate Nielsen’s work with the Royal Danish Academy of Music Copenhagen.

A highly accomplished opera conductor, he is equally at home in mainstream and contemporary repertoire. Previous opera includes Bayerische Staatsoper (Turandot), Norwegian Opera (Die Zauberflöte), Deutsche Oper Berlin (world premiere of Scartazzini’s Edward II); and Tosca, Turandot (Nina Stemme) and Les dialogues des Carmelites (Royal Swedish Opera). His Royal Danish Opera visit conducting Ruders' opera Kafka's Trial was described as a sensation: "He is one of the best things that has happened to the art of opera for many years" and subsequent productions there have included Il barbiere di Siviglia, Le Nozze di Figaro, La bohème, Cunning Little Vixen and Il viaggio a Reims.

Commercial recordings with BBCNOW include Sibelius Symphonies 1, 2, 6 & 7 and a disc of his tone poems and theatre music, featuring Finlandia and Valse Triste (Linn Records). His first release with Royal Scottish National Orchestra features music by R Strauss, the concert suite from Der Rosenkavalier and Ein Heldenleben (Linn Records). Pentatone also recently released the Lutoslawski and Dutilleux cello concertos with Johannes Moser and Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin. Earlier noteworthy recordings include Vilde Frang's celebrated debut recording for EMI, and Ruders’ Piano Concerto No. 2, (Bridge Records) which was nominated for a Gramophone Award. In 2011 he was awarded the prestigious Queen Ingrid Foundation Prize for services to Music in Denmark.

Mari  Eriksmoen

Mari Eriksmoen Soprano

Immediately upon completion of her vocal studies in Oslo (Norwegian Academy of Music), Paris (Conservatoire National Superieur) and Copenhagen (Royal Danish Academy of Opera), Norwegian soprano Mari Eriksmoen found herself with a dream offer to join Theater an der Wien as Zerbinetta in their production of Ariadne auf Naxos, marking the start of a close and ongoing relationship with this important theatre. Eriksmoen’s frequent return visits to Vienna have included as Olympia (Les contes d’Hoffmann), Euridice (Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo), Teti (Rossini's Le nozze di Teti e di Peleo) and Rosina (Paisiello’s Il barbiere di Siviglia) and she attracted wide attention and received universal praise for her portrayals of Susanna, Zerlina and Fiordiligi in a cycle of Mozart’s Da Ponte operas together with the late Nikolaus Harnoncourt in performances broadcast throughout Europe on both radio and television.

Last season, Eriksmoen scored a personal triumph in her role debut as Mélisande (Pelléas et Mélisande) under Alejo Pérez and in a universally-acclaimed new production by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Damien Jalet and Marina Abramovic for Opera Vlaanderen. With subsequent peformances at Grand Théâtre de Luxembourg, of Eriksmoen’s performance Forum Opéra wrote “her French diction was faultless, her voice like crystal, and she embodies the hypnotising fragility of this heroine to perfection”.

Other pivotal appearances in recent seasons have included Pamina (Die Zauberflöte) at Festival d'Aix-en-Provence under Raphaël Pichon and at Opernhaus Zürich under General Music Director Fabio Luisi, Blondchen (Die Entführung aus dem Serail) at Oper Frankfurt, Glyndebourne Festival Opera and at the 2015 BBC Proms, La Fée in Damiano Michieletto’s production of Cendrillon at Komische Oper Berlin under Henrik Nanasí and, in a display of repertoire versatility, Eriksmoen joined Daniel Barenboim’s epic Ring Cycles as Waldvogel in Wagner’s Siegfried at Teatro alla Scala.

A confident and versatile concert singer, Eriksmoen is frequently invited to sing Solveig in Grieg's Peer Gynt, with her wider concert repertoire including Schumann's Szenen aus Goethes Faust, Mozart's Davide penitente and Mass in C minor, Poulenc's Gloria, Orff's Carmina Burana, Handel's Messiah, Bach's Mass in B minor, Haydn's Stabat Mater and Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem. Eriksmoen is a regular guest with the Oslo Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Malmö Sympfoniorkester and Gothenburg Symphony amongst others. She’s recently appeared with Orchestre de Paris, Münchner Philharmoniker, Internationale Stiftung Mozarteum, and she made her debut last season with the Berliner Philharmoniker performing Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream under Iván Fischer.

Current season opera highlights include Pamina in Simon McBurney’s production of Die Zauberflöte for Dutch National Opera, Agilea in Handel’s Teseo conducted by René Jacobs for Theater an der Wien, and she makes her role debut as Sophie (Der Rosenkavalier) in David McVicar’s popular production for Norwegian National Opera. She also tours a new symphonic passion entitled “Solveig’s Waiting” created by Calixto Bieito for the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra and the Bergen Festival.

Eriskmoen has recorded Szenen aus Goethes Faust with Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under Daniel Harding (available on Naxos), Blondchen (Die Entführung aus dem Serail) with the Akademie für alte Musik Berlin and René Jacobs (available on harmonia mundi), and she appears on DVD (Opus Arte) as Blondchen with Glyndebourne Festival conducted by Robin Ticciati.