Project Description

Photo: Fabio Borquez

Salzburg Chamber Orchestra

artistic director: Lavard Skou-Larsen

In 1991, the violinist Lavard Skou-Larsen and a handful of colleagues decided to form an unusual ensemble. The aim of this ensemble was to perform orchestral chamber music with the freedom of soloists.

Skou-Larsen combed Europe and the rest of the world until he had a group of first class musicians. Their inspiration was the unforgettable Sandor Végh, whose charisma had influenced many members of the group considerably. In only its first year of existence, the orchestra toured in the United States and Canada.

In response to the success of the tour, invitations followed to numerous concerts with such celebrities as Boris Belkin, Mischa Maisky, Michel Dalberto, Rodolfo Bonucci, Jean-Bernard Pommier, Giora Feidman, or Alexander Lonquich.

From 1992 to 1995, Boris Belkin was the Artistic Director of the ensemble. During his tenure, the orchestra released two CDs of Mozart’s work.

In 1993 the first big tour of South America took place. Another success was the orchestras participation in “La Folle Journee Mozart” in Nantes (France) in February 1995. In the same year, the orchestra completed its second tour of South America, returning with the critics’ prize for the best foreign orchestra to have performed at the Teatro Colon, Buenos Aires, that season.

Since then, the orchestra has performed in the Concertgebouw/Amsterdam, the Philharmonie/Berlin, the Theatre des Champs Elysee/Paris, the Tonhalle/Zurich, the Teatro Municipal/Rio de Janeiro, and other important concert halls.

The Salzburg Chamber Soloists are regular guests at various festivals, including Academia Chigiana/Siena, the Turku Musikfestival/Finland, the Mozart Festival/Würzburg, Schubertiade/Roskilde, MIDEM in Cannes and the Salzburger Kulturtage. In 2001, the orchestra was invited to Lebanon to perform the final concert of the Baalbeck Festival.

In January 2002, the ensemble toured Germany together with the actress Senta Berger, performing the “8 seasons” with music by Antonio Vivaldi and Astor Piazzolla.

A special event in 2003 was a German tour with Giora Feidman, celebrating Jewish Klezmer and Argentinian Tango.

Back to North America in 2004 Salzburg Chamber Soloists played in San Francisco, Tacoma, Los Angeles, Chicago, Calgary, and other towns, with immense success.

With works from Mozart, Mendelssohn, Bruckner, Elgar, and Bartok the third South America tour was realized in October 2005, with performances in Sao Paulo, Curitiba, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago de Chile, among other places.

In 2006, in celebration of the 250th anniversary of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s birth, the orchestra held 17 concerts in Salzburg at the illustrious Grosser Saal des Mozarteums, and over 100 concerts worldwide at prestigious festivals and concert halls in Germany, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, Turkey and Italy.

In spring and fall, the ensemble returned twice to the USA and Mexico performing 29 concerts including venues like the Krannert Center, the Newman Center (Denver), the Joergensen Center, the Sunset Cultural Center (Carmel), the Stanford University, the Lied Center (University of Kansas), Worcester, Palm Beach, Kennedy Center (Washington), Tuesday Evening Concert Series (Charlottesville), and opening the “Festrival del Centro Historico” in Mexico City. Together with solists Andreas Klein at the piano and cellist Katharina Gross they received highest accolades from press, presenters and audience alike.

The Salzburg Chamber Soloists recorded for DENON and actually for Coviello Classics.