They knew each other and appreciated each other: Robert Schumann called Johannes Brahms a “hero of a new generation”, Brahms, on the other hand, was sold on Schumann’s romantic style.
Antje Weithaas recorded works by these two composers together with the NDR Radiophilharmonie under the baton of Andrew Manze (cpo). The Concerto for Violin and Orchestra by Schumann and the Double Concerto by Brahms (with the cellist Maximilian Hornung) were both composed for the violinist Joseph Joachim. Since 2019, Antje Weithaas is, together with Oliver Wille, artistic director of the International Joseph Joachim Violin Competition in Hannover. She was the first prize winner of this competition.
Both concerts are dedicated to the clear style of Johann Sebastian Bach – not without tonal transfiguration and own signature of the composers, of course. Also the keys, D minor and A minor, speak a common language: they are both presumed to be expressions of mourning, lament and earnestness.
> more information about the new recording (in German)
The new concert dates for the 2019/2020 season are now published on the website.
Antje Weithaas kicks off the 2019/20 season in solo recitals with works by Johann Sebastian Bach and Eugène Ysaÿe in Seoul, Shanghai, at Schloss Elmau and the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival. Other highlights of the season include performances with Concerto Budapest under András Schiff (Tchaikovsky), the Bochum Symphony under Andris Poga (Tchaikovsky) and the Hallé Orchestra Manchester under Alondra de la Parra (Beethoven) as well as a tour of Asia with the Royal Northern Sinfonia and Lars Vogt. Additionally, she will be Artist-in-Residence at the Philharmonic Orchestra of the State Theatre in her hometown Cottbus. In chamber music, she works closely with Marie Elisabeth Hecker and Martin Helmchen, and will begin a new musical partnership with harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani.
Antje Weithaas continues her collaboration with the NDR Radio Philharmonic and cpo with recordings of Schumann’s Violin Concerto and Brahms’ Double Concerto with Maximilian Hornung, both conducted by Andrew Manze. A new recording with the Camerata Bern is also planned.
Together with Oliver Wille, Antje Weithaas took over the artistic leadership of the Joseph Joachim International Violin Competition Hannover. They have taken over from Krzysztof Wegrzyn, the founder of the competition in 1991. He will, however, remain closely tied to the competion.
The next competition will take place in 2021.
Antje Weithaas was the first laureate of the first Joseph Joachim International Violin Competition in 1991. Oliver Wille is Professor at the Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover, founder of the Kuss Quartet and director of the festival Sommerliche Musiktage Hitzacker.
> Information about the Joseph Joachim International Violin Competition
In 2019, a lot of concerts in whole Europe and even in Seoul are on Antje Weithaas’ schedule.
The first concerts in 2019 take place in Thüringen with the Philharmonisches Orchester Altenburg-Gera (Jan 16-18), where she will play the violin concerto by Peter I. Tchaikovsky – a concerto which she recently recorded with the Camerata Bern. After a concert at the Wigmore Hall in London with the Israeli Chamber Project (Jan 20) and two concerts with the MDR Sinfonieorchester (Feb 8 and 10), she will travel all around Europe to give concerts in Sweden (Feb 16), Estonai (Feb 22), Belgium (March 1 with the Camerata Bern), Poland (March 8) and Hungary (March 27 and 28). A lot of concerts in Germany will follow.
Towards the end of the season, she will give a recital in Seoul, where she will perform selected Sonatas and Partitas by Johann Sebastian Bach and Eugène Ysaÿe. She already recorded this combination of works on CD and was highly praised for this by the international press.
> Have a look at the schedule with detailed information about the programme of these and other concerts (in German)
> have a look at her discography (in German)
Violinist Antje Weithaas and the Camerata Bern recorded the Violin Concerto and the String Quartet No. 3 in E-flat minor (arranged for string orchestra) by Pyotr I. Tchaikovsky. “I wanted to record Tchaikovsky for several reasons. Most importantly, I love Tchaikovsky’s music, particularly the two works featured on this recording,” says Antje Weithaas, violinist and leader of the Camerata Bern. It was a risky venture to record the Violin Concerto without a conductor. “Such projects can only succeed when the soloists and the orchestra know one another very well, as is the case with myself and the Camerata,” explains Antje Weithaas. Being able to make music together in such an intimate atmosphere is „a luxury“.
> press release with all details about the new CD
Antje Weithaas has recorded a CD with Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, violoncello and Martin Helmchen, piano (Alpha Classics, release: October 2017)that includes Franz Schubert’s Piano Trio No. 2, D. 929, along with his “Arpeggione” sonata (with cello and piano).
This recording has been awarded with the “Diapason d’Or” (December 2017).
“This recording deserves a place among the best” (Jury rating).
The “Diapason d’Or” is a recommendation of outstanding (classical) music recordings given by reviewers of the French music magazine Diapason. It is broadly equivalent to “Editor’s Choice” or “Disc of the Month” in the British Gramophone magazine.
She makes no bones about who she is, doesn’t push her way to the fore or seek the limelight in order to make a spectacular appearance. And precisely because of this, Antje Weithaas, born in 1966, is one of the most sought-after, characterful and striking violinists of our time.
Anything and everything she plays on stage or recordings is regularly described by critics as outstanding, “breathtaking”, intensive, technically and tonally brilliant. Weithaas’s interpretations and concert programming have even taken on benchmark status. Her ideas, her intensity and her unique style all contribute to her high reputation. Now, just a few weeks ago, the third and final album of her Bach-Ysaÿe trilogy was issued, while she can been seen and heard with various programmes till mid-2018 in countries including Germany, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Hungary, Spain and Poland.
> read the detailed press release
> have a look at Antje Weithaas’ schedule
With this CD, the violinist Antje Weithaas concludes her recording of all the sonatas and partitas for solo violin by Johann Sebastian Bach and Eugène Ysaÿe.
It greatly surprises her that no one has previously brought these two cycles together as systematically as she has done here, even though such an idea seems rather obvious: “The relationships are so strong! Now, I always combine these two composers in my solo recitals. It’s a completely new experience for the audience as well. They mostly come because they love Bach. And then they discover Ysaÿe. After Bach, their ears are opened for Ysaÿe’s subtleties – and after that, they hear more in Bach’s works than they did at the beginning.”
Critics have been enthusiastic from the very outset: “Her always technically flawless and musically intelligent and fascinating [Bach] interpretation is simply unassailable. But this Ysaÿe fills me with enthusiasm. Here, a new level is added to the technical and musical virtuosity of the violinist: that of tone colour. There is only a mere breath between luminous brilliance and shadowy sotto voce, between lyrical cantabile and screaming furioso – Weithaas switches from one to the other with lightning speed, turning Ysaÿe into an Expressionist painting in the process” (SWR2 about Vol. 1). And the Süddeutsche Zeitung wrote about the second CD: “A splendid Bach-Ysaÿe edition”.
Antje Weithaas started her three-album Bach-Ysaÿe project in 2012. “I am very grateful to have been able to spend so much time working intensively on these two important œvres for solo violin for so many years. Who would normally have such a privilege?!”
> read the detailed press release with all information about the new CD
On 13 May 2016, Antje Weithaas, Oliver Schnyder, piano, and the Camerata Bern played the double concerto for violin, piano and orchestra in D minor at the “Ittinger Pfingstkonzerte”. The recording is now available online.
> watch the video on YouTube
For many years, Antje Weithaas has impressed us “with her incredible technique and an unparalleled musical superiority and understanding”, according to the Berliner Zeitung two years ago. She naturally creates music “from the deepest core” and is always exemplary.
In the 2016/17 season, the Professor of the Berlin College will complete both of her two already celebrated CD projects. For her 50th Birthday the virtuoso will be giving a concert at the Berlin Concert Hall with the Camerata Bern, with herself conducting, where the programme will include a first performance of a Cyrill Schürch piece, among others. Further highlights of this passionate artist’s anniversary year are a tour of Norway with the ensemble in January 2017, as well as numerous chamber concerts, including a performance from a piano trio.
> read the detailed press release