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Berliner Philharmoniker to return in November with pianist Lang Lang
     Acclaimed as one of the best orchestras in the world, the Berliner Philharmoniker will return to Hong Kong for two not-to-be-missed concerts in November. The performances, which are part of the celebration events for the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, will be held at the Concert Hall of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

     The first concert will be held at 8pm on November 10 (Friday). Under the baton of Artistic Director and Chief Conductor Sir Simon Rattle, the orchestra will play Richard Strauss' "Don Juan" and Brahms' "Symphony No. 4 in E Minor". The internationally renowned pianist Lang Lang will also perform Bartók's "Piano Concerto No. 2".

     The programme of the second concert, which will be staged at 5pm on November 11 (Saturday), will comprise Stravinsky's "Petrushka" (revised version from 1947) and Rachmaninov's "Symphony No. 3 in A Minor", as well as a new work by Korean composer Unsuk Chin that was commissioned by the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation Première.

     Founded in 1882, the Berliner Philharmoniker has long been esteemed as one of the world's greatest orchestras. Many former principal conductors and artistic directors, including Hans von Bülow, Arthur Nikisch, Wilhelm Furtwängler and Herbert von Karajan, worked with the musicians to develop the unique tonal quality and performing style that made the Berliner Philharmoniker famous all over the world. Claudio Abbado, the Chief Conductor from 1989 to 2002, devised a new type of programming, with increased emphasis on contemporary works, expanded chamber recital series and operas in concert performance.

     When Rattle took the orchestra's helm in September 2002, the education programme was initiated to ensure that the orchestra could reach a wider and, especially, younger audience. Rattle was born in Liverpool and studied at the Royal Academy of Music. He regularly tours with the orchestra within Europe, North America and Asia, and has strong long-standing relationships with the world's leading orchestras.

     Lang Lang's open-hearted, emotive playing has inspired millions throughout his career. His landmark performances include the 2014 World Cup Final concert with vocalist Plácido Domingo in Rio, Brazil and the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He also performed for former President of the United States Barack Obama and former President Hu Jintao at a White House State Dinner.

     The concerts by the Berliner Philharmoniker are presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department. Tickets ranging from $680 to $2,980 will be available from August 11 (Friday) onwards at URBTIX (www.urbtix.hk). For telephone credit card bookings, please call 2111 5999. For programme enquiries and concessionary schemes, please call 2268 7321 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/CE/CulturalService/Programme/en/music/programs_177.html.

     Live relays of the concerts will be available at the Piazza of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Sha Tin Park and the Auditorium of Yuen Long Theatre with free admission. Details will be announced later at the Cultural Presentations Section's website at www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp. The first concert is sponsored by Mr Albert Hung and Mr Wilfred Ng.
Ends/Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Issued at HKT 14:45
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