Mariss Jansons could find clear and simple words to capture his lifelong fascination and emotional involvement with the music of Gustav Mahler: it is never less than holistic, he said, and contains everything that exists at all in the world.
Two things are indispensable to humanity: art and religion. Mariss Jansons expressed this fundamental belief countless times. Though baptized a Protestant in Riga and raised in the anti-religious atmosphere of Socialism, he referred to himself as a man of faith.
From the very beginning the great orchestral works of Richard Strauss formed an unbroken continuum in his programmes. On the other hand, all-Strauss evenings were few and far between. Jansons had no aversion to mixed programmes in which dissimilar pieces stood unrelated alongside each other, each speaking for itself. So he placed Strauss in a wide range of contexts.
For the orchestra’s 60th anniversary, Mariss Jansons conducts Schoenberg’s Gurre-Lieder. The sheer effort of performing it is so immense that it is rarely heard in concert.
2012, Mariss Jansons’s “Year of Beethoven” – Before setting out on his Japan tour with the complete symphonies he conducted his beloved Eroica in Munich.
Jansons conducts the BRSO in its first performance of Messiaen’s Turangalîla-Symphonie for his 70th birthday. Quite surprising, because the work was not part of his core repertoire and – perhaps because of this – developed a very special allure.
Time and again Mariss Jansons claimed that his greatest love was opera. Opera performances under Jansons’s baton were rarities and turned often enough into peak experiences – so also the concert performance of Tchaikovsky’s master opera The Queen of Spades.
Hardly any composer was closer to Mariss Jansons’s heart than Shostakovich, and hardly any conductor was a more authoritative interpreter of his music: Jansons conducts the “Leningrad”.
What connects him with Mariss Jansons? Rudolf Buchbinder’s answer to this question was instantaneous: “We love each other!” They felt a musical rapport from the very first note they played together. Perfect harmony: Rudolf Buchbinder and Mariss Jansons perform Beethoven.
“The later, the better”: Mariss Jansons conducts Bruckner’s Eighth with the BRSO for the first time – after 14 years as its principal conductor.
Jansons’s testament: Mariss Jansons stands at the rostrum one final time to conduct Strauss and Brahms on 8 November 2019.
The news of the death of our chief conductor Mariss Jansons has filled us with deep consternation and great sadness. With his death, the music world loses one of its greatest artistic personalities.
In honor of our long-standing Chief Conductor Mariss Jansons, who passed away on December 1, 2019, we performed Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, the “Resurrection Symphony”, together with the Bavarian Radio Chorus on January 15, 2020 at the Philharmonie in the Gasteig.