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THE SCOOP | Giedrė Šlekytė To Make North American Debut Leading Staatskapelle Berlin’s Sold Out Koerner Hall Dates

By Anya Wassenberg on November 17, 2023

Giedrė Šlekytė (Photo: Theresa Pewal)
Giedrė Šlekytė (Photo: Theresa Pewal)

The Royal Conservatory has announced that Lithuanian conductor Giedrė Šlekytė will be at the helm of the Staatskapelle Berlin for its upcoming sold out dates at Toronto’s Koerner Hall. She will replace Daniel Barenboim, who has had to bow out of the entire tour due to health reasons.

“It is with great regret that I need to withdraw from the Staatskapelle Berlin’s upcoming concert tour to Canada and the USA,” Barenboim said in a statement.

“I was very much looking forward to returning to this tour, but my health simply does not allow me to undertake the strenuous transatlantic travel and the many domestic trips required for this tour. I am thankful for everyone’s understanding and good wishes.”

Maestra Giedrė Šlekytė

A native of Vilnius, Lithuania, Maestra Šlekytė studied conducting at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz, the Academy of Music and Theatre in Leipzig and the Zurich University of Arts. She has built an impressive career as a sought-after guest conductor who has worked with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, Swedish Radio Orchestra, and many other ensembles across Europe, with something of a specialty in opera.

In the 2019 album of works by composer, Raminta Šerkšnytė on the Deutsche Grammphon label, Giedrė Šlekytė conducted the oratorio Songs of Sunset and Dawn with the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra. In 2021, she conducted the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra and Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra on an album of orchestral works by composer Žibuoklė Martinaitytė on the Ondine label.

Recent performances leading the Staatskapelle Berlin garnered critical acclaim, and later this season, she’ll be conducting the Royal Danish Opera, Hamburg State Opera, the Zurich Opera, Staatsoper unter den Linden, and Frankfurt Opera, among others.

“She is so accommodating to the sound of the Staatskapelle Berlin and performs with so much enthusiasm, allowing the orchestra to dive deep and fly high. She truly embodies the joy of making music. The whole orchestra is very supportive of Giedrė Šlekytė and happy to be a part of her North American debut — we are all excited to write a bit of music history together,” stated the board of the Staatskapelle Berlin.

The Concerts

For the orchestra’s first ever Toronto appearances, they will play all four of Johannes Brahms’s symphonies over two concerts: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2 on November 25 and Symphonies Nos. 3 and 4 on November 26.

Matthias Schulz, Intendant of Staatsoper Unter den Linden, remarked: “It is a great honour for us to bring the Brahms cycle to four music metropolises across the States and Canada. We immensely look forward to the musical encounters — with great conductors, as well as with the Canadian and North American audiences. We are very happy to form new bonds, when it comes to Toronto, where we will appear for the first time ever in our long history. We cannot wait to go on this special musical journey together with you.”

While the concert is sold out, ta limited number of Rush Tickets will be made available 3 hours before all performances presented by The Royal Conservatory. Prices vary, and Rush Tickets are limited to two tickets per person. Check [HERE] if you’re interested.

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