- Talent Tour 2020 will run alongside orchestra’s ‘Midnight Sun’ tour of Germany and Russia, with Talent Days in Berlin and St. Petersburg in June
- Innovative audition process features solo round and joint rehearsal with full orchestra
- Baltic Sea Philharmonic musicians will choose their future colleagues, with audition panel comprising principal players and conductor Kristjan Järvi
Berlin, 25 February 2020. As the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s international reputation as a boundary-busting, free-spirited ensemble grows, the best and brightest musicians want to be part of this Nordic success story. This year, the orchestra is again seeking out the Nordic region’s top musical talent, and with its Talent Tour 2020 will hold auditions in Berlin (22 June) and St. Petersburg (29 June) during the orchestra’s ‘Midnight Sun’ tour of Germany and Russia. Applications for the Talent Tour are now open, and musicians have until 15 April 2020 to apply under www.baltic-sea-philharmonic.eu/talenttour2020.
This year’s Talent Tour follows a major recruitment drive in 2019, when the orchestra auditioned some 100 musicians aged 18 to 28. Successful applicants joined the Baltic Sea Philharmonic membership pool of outstanding players, and have had the opportunity to tour under the visionary leadership of conductor Kristjan Järvi, performing inspirational music from memory in some of the most renowned concert halls in Europe. The Talent Tour is part of the orchestra’s burgeoning education programme, which is consolidated by the Baltic Sea Music Education Foundation.
An empowering experience for everyone involved
The Baltic Sea Philharmonic is a unique ensemble that has made a name for itself by playing major orchestral works by heart and through innovations such as immersive concert experiences that feature cutting-edge lighting, sound design and projection art. Musicians applying to join the orchestra can expect an equally innovative auditioning experience. Applicants will have the opportunity to shine in a solo first round, and, at the Talent Day in Berlin, will also be able to join a full orchestra rehearsal. The joint rehearsal will be open to the public, so all interested musicians are invited to listen, even if they are not auditioning themselves. For young conservatoire players eager to learn more about the Baltic Sea Philharmonic, such a rehearsal is like a window on the orchestra’s world, and is an amazing chance to see how this ensemble works with Kristjan Järvi.
The Talent Tour is just as empowering for the orchestra’s musicians as it is for the players auditioning, in that the Baltic Sea Philharmonic principals are the ones choosing their future colleagues. The orchestra’s principal musicians will lead the nine-strong panel for the first-round auditions, and along with Järvi will help make the final selection decisions. Therefore the players themselves have a major role in the orchestra’s evolution. And in doing so they further develop their entrepreneurial and leadership skills.
Principal violist Marzena Malinowska, from Poland, explained the positive philosophy at the heart of the Talent Tour auditions: ‘We are trying to get players out of their comfort zone – not in search of failure or perfection, but to see who they really are as people. We let them do what they love, to show and share their passion, and then we ask them to do things they might have thought they couldn’t do, to show that crossing mental boundaries is fun. When the audition itself becomes an experience that teaches you something and lets you discover new things in yourself, then the final official result doesn’t matter so much. Maybe our approach on the Talent Tour will make a little change in the musicians’ world, a world in which we all deal with self-doubt and self-judgement. Because there is no right and wrong in music – only fun and freedom.’
Applications now open – closing 15 April 2020
String, wind, brass and percussion players who want to apply for the Talent Days in Berlin or St. Petersburg can find full details of the audition process, rules and regulations, and how to apply, on the Baltic Sea Philharmonic website at www.baltic-sea-philharmonic.eu/talenttour2020. Players must be between the ages of 18 and 28, hold a passport from one of the following ten countries: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Russia or Sweden, and be enrolled in a music academy anywhere in the world. Alternatively, applicants can be international students enrolled in a music academy in one of the ten countries of the Baltic Sea region. Erasmus students enrolled in a music academy in one of the ten above-mentioned countries are also welcome. The application deadline is 15 April 2020.
Success stories from 2019
Violinist Zhanna Troitskaya from Russia joined last year’s ‘Midnight Sun’ tour after successfully auditioning at the Talent Day in St. Petersburg. She said: ‘I went to the audition without any expectation that I would get through, and thinking that I was not good enough as an orchestral player. But the atmosphere in the audition was warm and supportive – it was all about improvisation and the freedom to create music without fear and shame. The Baltic Sea Philharmonic is the one of the most wonderful orchestras I have ever played in. And playing by heart has opened up a whole new orchestral world for me, like I am playing in a big chamber ensemble.’
Jokubas Švambaris, a violinist from Lithuania, auditioned at the Talent Day in Palanga, and said: ‘The atmosphere at the audition was very positive, and everybody was helpful. For me, the joint rehearsal was one of the craziest things I’d ever done with an orchestra, because I had never played the repertoire before and Kristjan asked the orchestra to play standing up, and I just joined the orchestra and started improvising. That was a wonderful experience and motivated me to become a member of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic. Now I am so happy that this dream has come true and I am part of this orchestra.’
Bassoonist Pauls Gendrikovs from Latvia, who joined the orchestra after auditioning at the Talent Day in Riga, said: ‘Musicians should definitely apply for the chance to join the Baltic Sea Philharmonic because it is a wonderful opportunity to experience a truly professional orchestra with like-minded musicians – musicians who enjoy learning, laughing, living and performing as a big family with the inspiring conductor Kristjan Järvi.’
Baltic Sea Philharmonic – a revolution in music and culture
The Baltic Sea Philharmonic is a new paradigm for music making in the 21st century. Its concerts are a unique spectacle of sound, light, projection art and choreography; its passion for playing orchestral works from memory transforms the musical experience for both players and audiences; and its performances, under the electrifying baton of Music Director Kristjan Järvi, have a special passion and energy that’s infectious. But even more than this, as a community of musicians from ten Nordic countries, the Baltic Sea Philharmonic transcends geographical and historical boundaries and has become a movement for bringing people together. Embodying all that is innovative and progressive about the Nordic region, this visionary ensemble is taking the traditional orchestral model further than ever before. ‘It is a living breathing creature, with boundless energy and enthusiasm for the new – an adventure in itself,’ says Kristjan Järvi.