About This Performance
Awarded the Cooper Prize for non-fiction for his book, Schubert’s Winter Journey: Anatomy of an Obsession, English tenor Ian Bostridge brings the receipts for this recital of Schubert’s engrossing song cycle. His credentials as artist and biographer lend a depth and breadth of insight and understanding to these gloriously brooding settings of 24 poems that evoke facets of love and loss. “There can be few singers, indeed, who have explored this material with as much diligence as he has brought to it” (The Guardian).
Ian Bostridge’s international recital career has taken him to the Salzburg, Edinburgh, Munich, Vienna, St Petersburg, Aldeburgh, and Schwarzenberg Schubertiade Festivals and to the main stages of Carnegie Hall and the Teatro alla Scala, Milan. He has held artistic residencies at the Vienna Konzerthaus and Schwarzenberg Schubertiade (2003–04), the Barbican, London (2008), the Luxembourg Philharmonie (2010–11), the Wigmore Hall (2011–12) and Hamburg Laeiszhalle (2012–13). Ian has also participated in a Carte-Blanche series with Thomas Quasthoff at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw (2004–05) and a Perspectives series at Carnegie Hall (2005–06). In the 2018–19 season Ian undertook an auspicious Artistic Residency with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra: the first of its kind for the ensemble.
His recordings have won all the major international record prizes and been nominated for 15 Grammys. His recording for Pentatone of Schubert’s Winterreise with Thomas Adès won the Vocal Recording of the Year 2020 in the International Classical Music Awards. Other recordings include Schubert’s Die schöne Müllerin with Graham Johnson (Gramophone Award 1996), Tom Rakewell/The Rake’s Progress with Sir John Eliot Gardiner (Grammy© Award, 1999), and Belmonte/Die Entführung aus dem Serail with William Christie. Under his exclusive contract with Warner Classics, recordings included Schubert and Schumann Lieder (Gramophone Award 1998), The English Songbook and Henze Lieder with Julius Drake, Britten’s Our Hunting Fathers with Daniel Harding, Mozart’s Idomeneo with Sir Charles Mackerras, Janáček’s The Diary of One who Disappeared with Thomas Adès, Schubert with Leif Ove Andsnes, Mitsuko Uchida and Sir Antonio Pappano, Noel Coward with Jeffrey Tate, Britten Orchestral cycles with the Berliner Philharmoniker and Sir Simon Rattle, Wolf with Pappano, Bach cantatas with Fabio Biondi, Handel arias with Harry Bicket, Britten Canticles and both Britten’s The Turn of the Screw (Gramophone Award, 2003) and Billy Budd (Grammy© Award, 2010), Adès’s The Tempest (Gramophone Award 2010) and Monteverdi’s Orfeo. Recent recordings include Respighi Songs and Die schöne Mullerin with Saskia Giorgini for Pentatone, Shakespeare songs (Grammy© Award, 2017) and Requiem: The Pity of War with Pappano for Warner Classics, as well as Berlioz’s Les Nuits d'Eté, Ravel’s Shéhérazade and Debussy’s Le Livre de Baudelaire arr. John Adams with Ludovic Morlot and the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.
He has worked with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker, Chicago, Boston, London and BBC Symphony orchestras, the London, New York, Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestras and the Rotterdams Philharmonisch Orkest and Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Amsterdam under Sir Simon Rattle, Sir Colin Davis, Sir Andrew Davis, Seiji Ozawa, Sir Antonio Pappano, Riccardo Muti, Mstislav Rostropovich, Daniel Barenboim, Daniel Harding and Donald Runnicles. He sang the world premiere of Henze’s Opfergang with the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome under Pappano.
His operatic appearances have included Aschenbach/Death in Venice for the Deutsche Oper, Peter Quint/The Turn of the Screw for the Teatro alla Scala, Handel’s Jeptha for Opéra National de Paris, Lysander/A Midsummer Night's Dream for Opera Australia and at the Edinburgh Festival, Nerone/L'Incoronazione di Poppea, Tom Rakewell and Male Choru/The Rape of Lucretia for the Bayerische Staatsoper, Don Ottavio/Don Giovanni for the Wiener Staatsoper, Tamino/Die Zauberflöte, Aschenbach/Death in Venice and Jupiter/Semele for the English National Opera, Peter Quint/The Turn of the Screw, Don Ottavio/Don Giovanni and Caliban/The Tempest for the Royal Opera House and Madwoman/Curlew River in the Netia Jones’s staging for the London Barbican, which was also seen in New York and on the west coast of America.
His book Schubert's Winter Journey: Anatomy of an Obsession (The Pol Roger Duff Cooper Prize, 2016) was published by Faber and Faber in the UK and Knopf in the USA in 2014. In the 2020–21 season Ian gave a lecture series for the University of Chicago and took up the position of Visiting Professor at the Munich Hochschule für Musik und Theater.
He was a fellow in history at Corpus Christi College, Oxford (1992–95) and in 2001 was elected an honorary fellow of the college. In 2003 he was made an Honorary Doctor of Music by the University of St Andrews and in 2010 he was made an honorary fellow of St John's College Oxford. He was made a CBE in the 2004 New Year’s Honours. In 2014 he was Humanitas Professor of Classical Music at the University of Oxford.
Wenwen Du is one of Canada’s most accomplished young pianists. Born in China and trained by Dan Zhaoyi at the renowned Shenzhen Art School, Du was also mentored by the master pianist Lee Kum Sing at Vancouver Academy of Music.
Du has given piano recitals on three continents, Europe, North America, and Asia. In the summer of 2018, she recorded solo piano works of Schubert, Rachmaninov, and others, for CBC Radio. She has appeared in duo recitals with volinists Caroline Goulding, Nikki Chooi, and Timothy Chooi, and with sopranos Judith Howarth, mezzo soprano Abigail Levis, baritones Johannes Kammler and Anton Belov, and bass-baritone Richard Zeller.
Du has given recitals with tenor Ian Bostridge in cities including Daegu, Shanghai, New York City, Atlanta, Vancouver BC. Their performances received critical acclaim. “Du and Bostridge are not just on the same page, they anticipate each other’s every nuance in perfect synchronization.” (Vancouver Sun) The duo was “superb [in their] devastating concert” of music of World War I. (New York Times)
Du appeared at the LA Philharmonic for a unique recital of Franz Schubert and Samuel Beckett, directed by Yuval Sharon and featuring soprano Julia Bullock, bass-baritone Ryan McKinney, and actors including Miles Anderson of the BBC series House of Cards, and Barry McGovern, of Braveheart and Game of Thrones.
Du has been mentored as a conductor by the Maestro Tang Muhai, himself a protege of Herbert von Karajan. After she served as primary artistic coach for Tianjin Opera House’s premiere of Tang Kang Nian’s Thunderstorm, Maestro Tang invited her to be Primary Artist Coach for Die Walküre with the Tianjin Symphony Orchestra, and then Assistant Conductor for China National Opera House and Opera Australia’s joint tour of Madama Butterfly, and both Assistant Conductor and primary artistic coach of Harbin Grand Theatre’s Tosca.
Du is Principal Coach at the Aquilon Music Festival in McMinneville, where she has assisted Maestra Barbara Day Turner and organized Liederabends. In Vancouver, BC, she maintains a private piano studio and works as a vocal coach with students in the Opera Ensemble at the University of British Columbia.