Posted on 8 Dec 2011
The audience at the sold-out Heydar Aliyev Palace in Baku (Azerbaijan) thanked the Symphony Orchestra of the Flanders Opera with a standing ovation. The orchestra, led by our chief conductor Dmitri Jurowski, has just opened the fifth, and very prestigious, Rostropovich Festival there. This festival is intended as a tribute to the renowned cellist, conductor and human rights activist Mstislav Rostropovich, who was born in Baku.
The programme included Mahler’s Fifth Symphony, which had previously been performed in Ghent and Antwerp on 30 November and 1 December respectively, but was not such an obvious choice for the Caucasus. Even so, the Azeri audience responded with an ovation that was unprecedented, warm and overwhelming, even for our orchestra. This was followed on 5 December by a second, equally successful, concert of Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony and Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto. A total of more than four thousand people attended the two concerts.