On June 2, Thomas Hampson performs Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn on tour with the Gewandhausorchester, under the baton of Andris Nelsons, at the Symphony Hall in Osaka, Japan. Completing the program, Nelsons leads the ensemble in Tchaikovsky’s epic and energetic Fifth Symphony.
The inspiration for Des Knaben Wunderhorn was a three-volume collection of “folk songs” by that name published by Romantic poets Achim von Arnim and Clemens Brentano between 1805 and 1808, which enjoyed widespread popularity in the 19th century. Hampson made his Australian orchestral concert debut last year with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra singing Des Knaben Wunderhorn. The Sydney Morning Herald celebrated his performance:
“Mahler was never in safer hands than those of Thomas Hampson. This is a veteran musician who knows the exact meaning behind every word and every note – and probably what Gustav was doing the morning he wrote it. Nothing is overlooked. It’s a partnership that has borne innumerable iconic performances, and proven beneficial for both composer and singer.
Hampson’s knowledge of music history and composition is almost unmatched by any modern singer. This consummate comprehension allows him to create an intricately detailed performance of selections from Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn, the highlight of the evening … The big notes bloom and each consonant is caressed, each vowel smooth yet defined.”
On June 28 & 29, Thomas Hampson joins the Gewandhausorchester and soprano Kristine Opolais for two free Klassik airleben concerts in Leipzig. Under the baton of Andris Nelsons, Hampson and Ms. Opolais perform arias, duets and orchestral works from the Italian opera tradition. Following, on June 30, Hampson and Ms. Opolais reprise the program with Nelsons and the Gewandhausorchester at the Konzerthaus Dortmund, marking the final concert for Nelsons and the Gewandhausorchester this season.
On June 23, Thomas Hampson and pianist Wolfram Rieger travel to Schwarzenberg to present an all-Mahler recital at the Angelika-Kauffmann-Saal. Hot on the heels of their recent Liederabend at the Opernhaus Zürich, together they will perform a program of selections from Mahler’s Des Knaben Wunderhorn, and Kindertotenlieder.
WFMT’s Chicago Symphony Orchestra Radio Broadcast Series will broadcast a live performance featuring Thomas Hampson and the CSO, led by Bramwell Tovey, on June 30 at 8 PM (CT). Hosted by Lisa Simeone, the two-hour Chicago Symphony Orchestra broadcasts include dynamic and innovative commentary, which takes the listener behind the scenes and into the music. The performance features a program of American songs and orchestral music by Ives, Copland, Still, and more. Learn more about the broadcast here.
Thomas Hampson returns to the Opernhaus Zürich for a Liederabend with pianist Wolfram Rieger on June 19. Hampson will perform selected songs by Mahler, H.T. Burleigh, Margaret Bonds, Jean Berger, and Leonard Bernstein. He also sings Jennifer Higdon’s Civil Words, dedicated to Mr. Hampson, who first premiered the work in 2015 with Wolfram Rieger. Next season, Hampson returns to the Opernhaus Zürich to take on the role of Jan Vermeer in the world premiere of Stefan Wirth’s Girl with a Pearl Earring.
On June 7, Thomas Hampson opens the Whitsun Festival with his superstar colleagues, soprano Nadine Sierra, and tenor Michael Fabiano, in a concert entitled “American Night,” at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden. Hampson has long championed the American song, with the help of his “Song of America” project, which aims to explore connections between poetry and music, and history and culture, through the work of American composers and poets.
Photo: Michael Cooper
Canadian Opera Company’s world premiere of Rufus Wainwright’s Hadrian has been nominated in seven categories for the 40th Anniversary Dora Mavor Moore Awards. Additionally, Hampson has been nominated in the “Outstanding Performance of an Individual” category for his performance in the title role. The Dora Mavor Moore Awards recognizes excellence in professional theatre, dance, and opera in Toronto.
In song, you have one of the most amazing diaries of any generation’s culture at a given time.