Beethoven considered the Seventh Symphony as one of his best works. It is in fact “a picture of Europe of that time, painted by the Napoleonic Wars and the French Revolution” (G. Feltz). Regardless of the turbulent times, this work emanates a contagious optimism.
Twenty-year-old student Hector Berlioz was commissioned to compose his first great work for soloists, choir and orchestra, the Solemn Mass in 1824, which was performed twice in the next three years. Dissatisfied with the result, the composer, as it was thought, destroyed it, but a copy was found in a wooden bench at the church’s gallery in Antwerp in 1991 and reconstructed. Its exclusivity was enhanced by the performances and recording of elite orchestras led by John Eliot Gardiner and Riccardo Muti. This time, our permanent guest conductor Daniel Raiskin will conduct the huge performing machine of soloists, orchestra, and choir, in the first performance of this piece in the Balkans.