Dirk Kaftan
 
Portrait
Trenner

Dirk Kaftan was appointed General Music Director of the Beethoven Orchester Bonn and the municipal opera house at the beginning of the 2017/18 season. During the new season, Dirk Kaftan is present in opera and concert: In addition to numerous concerts, he conducts Richard Strauss' opera "Arabella" and Giacomo Meyerbeer's rarely performed opera "Feldlager in Schlesien". He continues the successful concert series “Grenzenlos” and “Im Spiegel”, which brought him together with artists such as Martin Grubinger, Yasmin Levy, ensembles like Kardeş Türküler, and minds like Peter Sloterdijk and Rafik Schami. He is looking forward to working with Cameron Carpenter and Lucienne Renaudin Vary among others, during the season of 2021/2022. For the Beethoven anniversary year, he was the initiator and driving force behind a whole series of projects such as the "Beethoven Lounges", "Hofkapelle" and "Beethoven Moves!" which dealt with the famous son of the city of Bonn. During the COVID-19 pandemic, he developed new concert formats such as "Beethoven Pur", in which Ludwig van Beethoven's symphonies could be performed in a chamber music setting.

Kaftan’s wide-ranging repertoire comprises greatly acclaimed performances of Beethoven’s symphonies, Nono’s “Intolleranza 1960”, “The Merry Widow”, and various intercultural projects, which allow him to work with musicians and music from different countries, among them the Balkans, Turkey, Israel, and Iraq.

Dirk Kaftan is a welcome guest at major theatres, most recently with the Bruckner Orchestra Linz, the Ensemble Modern and with an acclaimed Tristan at the Hanover State Opera. He has staged at the Volksoper in Vienna and the Royal Opera in Copenhagen and conducted performance series in Berlin and Dresden. In 2016, he conducted Miroslav Srnka's Make No Noise at the Bregenz Festival.

While rejoicing in his various guest appearances, Dirk Kaftan’s work for the house he is in charge of always remains at the center of his commitment. His concern for his own ensemble, orchestra, and choir is a trait that musicians and colleagues appreciate. This conception of how to execute his task derives from his first appointments as Kapellmeister at the theatres of Trier, Bielefeld, and Münster, and even more so as first Kapellmeister in Dortmund and Graz and it even intensified when he assumed the post of General Music Director in Augsburg and chief conductor in Graz.

Audiences and critics alike appreciate his work, and highly acclaimed CDs are available: Most recently, 2019 saw the release of Beethoven's Egmont, his first production with the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, which was enthusiastically received by critics and awarded the OPUS KLASSIK in 2020. Before that, he recordet productions such as “Der ferne Klang”, “Jenufa” and “Die griechische Passion” in Graz and Augsburg. Primarily for his concerts and the dedication to an active communication with the public, he was awarded the Karl-Böhm-Interpretations-Preis by the state Steiermark.

His credo is “approaching people” and “combining forces”. This shows in the results of Dirk Kaftan’s work. Whether dealing with musicians or with the audience – to him, music is always interexchange of what one does and what one hears. Bonn’s General Music Director apprehends music as an essential part of life. Music is an invitation to think along, sympathize, and participate.

 

 

Dirk Kaftan
 
Projects
Trenner

Projects:

Beethoven Pure

Concerts With A Workshop Character

A concert series appealing to music experts and newbies alike: “Beethoven Pure” introduces you to Beethoven's symphonies 1 to 8 in full length with accompanying talks. We present interesting background information concerning the work and the genius behind it, become acquainted with different musical ideas in talk format, and finally get to listen to the respective work purely and in one piece. Beethoven is brought to you in a chamber orchestra arrangement during a musical workshop and the audience can look over Ludwig’s shoulder at work.

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Hofkapelle

Beethoven's Childhood And Youth Repertoire

Ludwig van Beethoven spent the first twenty-one years of his life in Bonn. During this time, he was in close contact with the ensemble “Hofkapelle”: First through his father and later as a musician working there himself. The repertoire the musicians played together most likely left a considerable mark on him. Works from the „typical concerts of the court orchestra” were found in archives in Modena and Vienna and initially performed at the “Redoute” in Bad Godesberg, the place where the aged Haydn and the juvenile Beethoven first met. Some of the works that were played by the ensemble will be released on CD by the label Dabringhaus & Grimm at the end of 2021.

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Beethoven Lounges

A Musical Talk Show For The Beethoven Anniversary

For the Beethoven anniversary year (250th birthday in 2020), Dirk Kaftan invited guests from near and far and brought them together. At the Pantheon, the Beethoven Lounges welcomed the key players of the anniversary year from music and society. It was a meeting place with monthly updates on the festivities in honor of Beethoven’s opus. The performers discussed past events and looked forward to upcoming activities in the city of Bonn and beyond. They talked about Beethoven and looked at him with eyes sparkling with joy. Even though Beethoven’s birthday dates back many years, his values and his works are all the more current and significant up to the present day.

Ludwig van Beethoven spent the first twenty-one years of his life in Bonn. During this time, he was in close contact with the ensemble “Hofkapelle”: First through his father and later as a musician working there himself. The repertoire the musicians played together most likely left a considerable mark on him. Works from the „typical concerts of the court orchestra” were found in archives in Modena and Vienna and initially performed at the “Redoute” in Bad Godesberg, the place where the aged Haydn and the juvenile Beethoven first met. Some of the works that were played by the ensemble will be released on CD by the label Dabringhaus & Grimm at the end of 2021.

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Beethoven Moves!

Beethoven's Fifth Symphony As You Have Never Experienced It Before

With acrobatic break dancing, touching texts, exciting images and irrepressible energy, young people from Bonn and Medellín rediscovered Beethoven's masterpiece during the Beethoven Moves! project together with the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn. Already in April 2019, members of the orchestra, general music director Dirk Kaftan, director Anselm Dalferth, music educators and project director Rita Baus traveled for a week to Medellín in Colombia. There, they made the acquaintance of young people who are being accompanied back into a life in society in a facility run by the Salesians of Don Bosco.

For these young people, in addition to their daily work and education, there was also a cultural programme: Moves! Together with these young people, our musicians rediscovered Beethoven's Fifth Symphony: What does it tell me? What does it tell you? And from this, their own attitude to the piece emerged, their own statement was formulated.

 A story about how it is worthwhile to stand up for one's goals and dreams.

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Dialogue of different cultures

Concert for the Augsburg Peace Festival July 2013
A thrilling expedition through western and oriental culture together with the renowned turkish soloist and composer Kemal Dinc. First performance of the concert-piece for Baglama and orchestra.


„Alle Menschen werden Brüder“ 2010
On July 10,  2010 a unique concert took place on the Rathausplatz(open air) of Augsburg.
350 Singers of different cultures performed this concert for peace together with the Augsburg Philharmonic. The initial idea for this concert, was based on the last movement of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, which until today represents the longing for peace, tolerance and understanding in the jewish, muslim and christian culture.  Great focus was put on the first performance of Salaam – peace symphony by Enjott Schneider.

Solisten: Birgit Stolzenburg da Biasio, Komalé Akakpo (Hackbrett), Sally du Randt (Sopran), Stephanie Hampl (Mezzsopran), Seung-Hyun Kim (Tenor), Stephen Owen (Bariton)

Philharmonisches Orchester Augsburg mit: Sängerinnen und Sänger von Kosaken Kraj e. V., Junges Vokalensemble Schwaben, Chor des Gymnasiums St. Stephan, Chor der Sing- und Musikschule Mozartstadt Augsburg, Philharmonischer Chor Augsburg, Kirchenchor Herz-Jesu Augsburg, Türkischer Chor Sultan-i Yegah, Koreanischer Chor Augsburg, Chor des Deutsch-Türkischen Kültürvereins, Opernchor des Theaters Augsburg.
Pera Ensemble (Leitung: Mehmet Yesilcay)
Hamburg Klezmer Band (Leitung: Mark Kovnatskiy)


KARDES TÜRKÜLER & Augsburger Philharmoniker
Lieder der Migration(songs of migration) – Göç Türküleri 1.11.2011
ENCOUNTER of different musical traditions. The western view on oriental culture, represented by Rimsky-Korsakows Scheherazade in confrontation with „real“ turkish, armenian and kurdish music. Also an extraordinary exciting experiment with new musical forms/arrangements for orchestra and the renowned turkish folk-ensemble Kardes Türküler.


Education Programmes:

School concerts:
Introducted, moderated and chaired school-concerts „round the world with music“. This first, emotional contact with classical music reached about 20000 children in Augsburg within 3 years.


Concert Introductions with live orchestra:
Before the philharmonic concerts this unique offer to the public has become very popular giving a personal insight in the pieces to be performed.


Children and family concerts:
Numerous concerts for young people in a variety of different shapes have been created througout the years...

Special Concerts:

Dialogue of different cultures

Concert for the Augsburg Peace Festival July 2013
A thrilling expedition through western and oriental culture together with the renowned turkish soloist and composer Kemal Dinc. First performance of the concert-piece for Baglama and orchestra.


„Alle Menschen werden Brüder“ 2010
On July 10,  2010 a unique concert took place on the Rathausplatz(open air) of Augsburg.
350 Singers of different cultures performed this concert for peace together with the Augsburg Philharmonic. The initial idea for this concert, was based on the last movement of Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, which until today represents the longing for peace, tolerance and understanding in the jewish, muslim and christian culture.  Great focus was put on the first performance of Salaam – peace symphony by Enjott Schneider.

Solisten: Birgit Stolzenburg da Biasio, Komalé Akakpo (Hackbrett), Sally du Randt (Sopran), Stephanie Hampl (Mezzsopran), Seung-Hyun Kim (Tenor), Stephen Owen (Bariton)

Philharmonisches Orchester Augsburg mit: Sängerinnen und Sänger von Kosaken Kraj e. V., Junges Vokalensemble Schwaben, Chor des Gymnasiums St. Stephan, Chor der Sing- und Musikschule Mozartstadt Augsburg, Philharmonischer Chor Augsburg, Kirchenchor Herz-Jesu Augsburg, Türkischer Chor Sultan-i Yegah, Koreanischer Chor Augsburg, Chor des Deutsch-Türkischen Kültürvereins, Opernchor des Theaters Augsburg.
Pera Ensemble (Leitung: Mehmet Yesilcay)
Hamburg Klezmer Band (Leitung: Mark Kovnatskiy)


KARDES TÜRKÜLER & Augsburger Philharmoniker
Lieder der Migration(songs of migration) – Göç Türküleri 1.11.2011
ENCOUNTER of different musical traditions. The western view on oriental culture, represented by Rimsky-Korsakows Scheherazade in confrontation with „real“ turkish, armenian and kurdish music. Also an extraordinary exciting experiment with new musical forms/arrangements for orchestra and the renowned turkish folk-ensemble Kardes Türküler.


Education Programmes:

School concerts:
Introducted, moderated and chaired school-concerts „round the world with music“. This first, emotional contact with classical music reached about 20000 children in Augsburg within 3 years.


Concert Introductions with live orchestra:
Before the philharmonic concerts this unique offer to the public has become very popular giving a personal insight in the pieces to be performed.


Children and family concerts:
Numerous concerts for young people in a variety of different shapes have been created througout the years...