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Abu Dhabi Classics 2022

Abu Dhabi Classics 2022

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, United Arab Emirates Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Abu Dhabi Classics presents a new season of dynamic classical concerts and musical performances in the capital.

Audiences can always expect a rich and diverse selection of performances, built on the works of leading composers, and these programmes are a highlight of the cultural calendar.

As well as world-renowned orchestras and soloists, Abu Dhabi Classics brings ballet and the performing arts, and celebrated artists from the Arab world to audiences, in what is considered among the strongest arts programming in the region.


Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra with Daniel Harding

For decades, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra has been ranked among the very best orchestras in the world, alongside the Berlin Philharmonic and Vienna Philharmonic. Some of the greatest ever conductors – from Willem Mengelberg to Bernard Haitink and Riccardo Chailly – have worked with the orchestra and written music history. For the first time in 10 years, the prestigious Concertgebouw Orchestra is now returning to the Gulf region, to offer music lovers some of the world’s most beautiful classical music. For its first night in Abu Dhabi, the orchestra will perform the composer with whom it is probably most closely linked: Gustav Mahler. Having performed some of the greatest Mahler recordings, the orchestra will play his last completed symphony: the majestic 9th.

Mahler’s 9th is considered one of the most accomplished symphonic works of all time. It is an immense homage to love and a musical celebration of life of an intensity unheard before or since.


Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Daniel Harding
, Conductor

van Veldhuizen: Mais le corps taché dombres for harp and strings, 2019 (8 minutes)
Mahler: Symphony No. 9 in D major (81 minutes)

9 November 2022, 8PM
Emirates Palace Auditorium, Abu Dhabi

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Daniel Harding  Julian Hargreaves _ 3 



Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra with Daniel Harding and Leonidas Kavakos

For its second concert in Abu Dhabi, the prestigious Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra will be playing an early performance designed with the goal of being both an experience for classical music lovers and to attract those who want to be introduced to it. The programme features Beethoven’s popular 6th Symphony, the Pastorale, which reflects the feelings that nature’s beauty can arouse in the observer. The programme will offer music at its highest level and at the same time give a beautiful overview of what classical music is all about. For the Brahms violin concerto, the orchestra will be joined by one of today’s best and most revered violinists: Greek star Leonidas Kavakos, who will be playing in Abu Dhabi for the first time.


Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
Daniel Harding,
Leonidas Kavakos, Violin

Brahms: Violin Concerto in D major op. 77 (38 minutes)

Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 in F major op. 68, Pastorale (39 minutes)

10 November 2022, 6PM
Emirates Palace Auditorium, Abu Dhabi

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Abu Dhabi Classics - Leonidas Kavakos



National Ballet of Cuba: Carmen


Based on Bizet’s celebrated opera, Carmen tells a tale of an enchanting seductress who radiates defiance and freedom, a tale with an ending far more complex than a doomed love affair.

The staging by Ballet Nacional de Cuba focusses on the intention of revealing the essential contradictions between Carmen’s rebellious personality and the forces of her time.

The gypsy Carmen, a beautiful and sensual woman, gets in a fight that leads to her arrest. Carmen captures the heart of Don Jose, an army corporal who leaves his job and joins her world. But Carmen quickly wearies of Don Jose’s possessiveness. When she turns her attention to the dashing toreador Escamillo, Don Jose’s jealousy erupts into violence and fate shortly defines the destiny of the main characters.


Don Quixote Suite

Ludwig Minkus
Choreography: Adaptation by Alicia Alonso

Carmen Suite
Ballet in one act

Music: Georges Bizet — Rodion Shchedrin
Choreography: Alberto Alonso
Production Designer: Salvador Fernandez

25 November 2022, 8PM
Cultural Foundation Auditorium, Abu Dhabi



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Israel Philharmonic Orchestra: Gala Concert

The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in 1936 by Bronislaw Huberman. Huberman assembled a professional symphony orchestra of high calibre, consisting of Europe’s most talented Jewish symphonic players. Arturo Toscanini conducted the opening concerts in December 1936 and again in April 1938. The orchestra’s name was changed to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (IPO) in 1948, after the establishment of the State of Israel.
Today the IPO ranks among the world’s best orchestras and has played for many decades under the baton of legendary conductor Zubin Mehta. The orchestra has toured the world and played with the greatest performers in classical music including Valery Gergiev, Daniel Barenboim, Radu Lupu, Pinchas Zukerman, Gil Shaham, Gustavo Dudamel, Evgeny Kissin, Kurt Masur and his son Ken-David, Mischa Maisky, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Yefim Bronfman, Maxim Vengerov, Murray Perahia and Yuja Wang. Since 2020 the orchestra has been playing under the artistic direction of star conductor Lahav Shani, who rose to fame as Chief Conductor of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra.
In line with its tradition of creating unique high-level artistic events for the Gulf region, Abu Dhabi Classics will present the first concert by this prestigious orchestra in the region. For its one-night-only appearance in the UAE capital, the IPO will perform Gustav Mahler’s majestic Symphony No. 1. Written between 1884 and 1888, the symphony was inspired by the works of the German romantic period and imagines in music the possibility of a noble and heroic life. Mahler also conceived of the work as a tone poem in symphonic form. Nicknamed 'Titan', as a reference to Jean Paul Richter’s novel, the symphony is a wonderful introduction to Mahler’s musical language and offers the perfect programme for a truly historic night of music.


Piano Concerto No. 27 in B♭ major


Mahler: Symphony No. 1 in D major

20 December 2022, 8PM
Emirates Palace Auditorium, Abu Dhabi

Israel Orchestra


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Rebeca Omordia: Piano Recital 'African Pianism'

The 'African Pianism' piano recital consists of works by composers from West Africa (Nigeria and Ghana), South Africa and North Africa (Morocco), as well as other works using African percussion. Rebeca Omordia will use local percussionists to play a Moroccan piece, ‘En attente du printemps’ for piano and darbuka.

20 January 2023. 8PM
Cultural Foundation Auditorium, Abu Dhabi

Rebeca Omordia

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