VU-Orchestra Latvia Tour 2018The Netherlands congratulate Latvia
As a present for the Latvian Centenary, the Kingdom of the Netherlands presents one of its finest amateur orchestras. The VU-Orchestra consists of eighty young musicians and is known for its ground-breaking performances of the late romantic repertoire. Under the baton of conductor Daan Admiraal, the orchestra has played with many world-class soloists, like Janine Jansen, Pieter Wispelwey and Amihai Grosz and traveled all over Europe.
The VU-Orchestra is one of the biggest, best and most ground-breaking student orchestras in the Netherlands. Every year the orchestra plays in the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and other major concert venues in the Netherlands. Every summer the orchestra goes on an international tour. Highlights of the last few years are a partnership with the Järvi Academy in 2014 and concerts in Belgrade, Lisbon and Saint Petersburg. Last december the VU-Orchestra has performed Handel ́s Messiah together with the Dutch Touring Opera.
The VU-Orchestra is famous in the Netherlands for completely transforming the amateur music industry in the 1980’s and being the most ground-breaking amateur orchestra ever-since. What started as a small chamber orchestra grew vastly under the baton of conductor Daan Admiraal and by the year 1983, the orchestra was the first amateur orchestra in the Netherlands to perform Igor Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring. Symphonies by Gustav Mahler, Richard Strauss and many other major composers were soon to follow and nowadays the orchestra is still known for exploring new works, previously unknown to amateur orchestras.
In its 55 years of existence, the VU-Orchestra worked with many accomplished soloists and has scouted even more young talents. Among many others Janine Jansen, Jaap van Zweden, Isabelle van Keulen, Ivo Janssen, Quirine Viersen and Pieter Wispelwey have performed with the VU-Orchestra. More recent, in 2014 the VU-Orchestra commissioned the young composer Bram Kortekaas to write a new work for the VU-Orchestra to be performed at concerts with the Järvi Academy. In the years to follow, Kortekaas has proven his promise when he was commissioned to write new works for the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra and the Netherlands Radio Choir. In 2015 the orchestra went on tour with Shin Sihan, who would become artist in residence of the NJO (National Youth Orchestra) Summer Festival 2016, and in January 2018 the orchestra accompanied Amihai Grosz in William Walton’s Viola Concerto.
Daan Admiraal was born in Eindhoven in 1949. He started his musical career as a brilliant oboe player. Already during his studies in 1971 he was appointed as solo-oboe in the Arnhem Philharmonic Orchestra, where he resigned in 1974 for reasons of further musical studies. He graduated his oboe study at the Conservatorium of Amsterdam with many prizes, among them the ‘Zilveren Vriendenkrans’, a special prize of the Friends of the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and the Prize of Excellence in 1976. He studied orchestral conducting at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in The Hague with Louis Stotijn, to continue privately with the famous Russian conductor Kyrill Kondrashin. He was a finalist in the NOS Conducting Course in Hilversum.
Daan Admiraal is chief-conductor of two Dutch University Orchestras (Amsterdam and Delft) that both have a leading position in Holland. Under his baton they often and with a strong dedication perform compositions that belong to the most challenging of the orchestral repertoire and which are beyond the possibilities of the majority of the non-professional orchestra’s. The Philharmonie and the VU Chamber Orchestra must also be mentioned.
Daan Admiraal also conducted many professional orchestras, among which are Het Limburgs Orkest, the Arnhem Philharmonic Orchestra, I Fiamminghi, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, the Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra, the Virtuosi Pragenses and the baroque orchestra’s Concerto d’Amsterdam and In Styl Moderno. In recent years Admiraal conducted in many European countries: Sweden, Denmark, England, Germany, Prague, Belgium, France and Italy, and recently in Russia and China.
Anastasia Feruleva, born in 1992, started her musical education at the age of five with Tatyana Demsheva as her first teacher. Between the ages of fourteen and eighteen Anastasia was a student in the Young Talent department of the prestigious Saint Petersburg Conservatoir, where she was taught by Vadim Messerman. After this, she studied with Larissa Groeneveld at the Royal Conservatoir in the Hague where she graduated with a 10 with honours when she finished her Master.
Anastasia currently studies with Troels Svane at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin. Among the pedagogues who also contributed to her musical development are Gary Hoffman, Reinhard Latzko, Luise Hopkins, Arto Noras, Dmitry Ferschtman, Godfried Hoogeveen, Miklós Perényi, Antonio Meneses, Harro Ruijsenaars, Stefan Metz, Eberhard Feltz, Raphael Wallfisch and David Geringas.
Anastasia has been awarded many prizes in different competitions. In 2016 she was awarded the second prize at the Dutch National Cello Competition. She has performed in Russia, Norway, Finland, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands and has appeared as soloist with several orchestra’s among which the Orchestra of the Royal Conservatoire and the Northern Netherlands Orchestra. The cello Anastasia plays is a Rombouts from 1710 it has kindly been given to her on loan.
During the concerts the orchestra will take you on a journey through beautiful landscapes. The journey starts with the rousing South American rhythms of the Four dances from Estancia by Alberto Ginastera, a high romantic ballet about love and longing where wringing dissonances find a place in festive flamboyant melodies.
The tribute to Latvia will be given with the Concert for cello and orchestra by Pēteris Vasks, which is a stark contrast to Ginastera. Subdued dark and sad melodies interrupted by violent outbursts tell a raw story. The solo part will be played by the talented cellist Anastasia Feruleva, second prize winner of the Dutch National Cello Competition 2016.
After the break a real classic is on the program. The second symphony in D by Jean Sibelius begins with a fairytale, but soon the listener is taken to the northern nature of Finland. These pastoralistic sounds are intertwined with moments of ominousness, euphoria and almost majestic pride that alternate in a masterly manner.
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Photographs by: Veerle Bastiaansen, Anna Lakmaker, Nic Limper, Indriķis Stūrmanis a.o.