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PETER GREGSON SIGNS EXCLUSIVE CONTRACT WITH DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON AND TAKES “RECOMPOSED” SERIES FORWARD
L-R: Clemens Trautmann (President Deutsche Grammophon), Peter Gregson, Christian Badzura (Director New Repertoire Deutsche Grammophon)
His first release will be Recomposed by Peter Gregson: Bach – The Cello Suites, a creative contemporary vision of a classic
Cellist, composer and electro-acoustic alchemist Peter Gregson is a man obsessed – with music and sound. “The job of the musician is to be creating stuff that’s relevant to his time,” he says. “You can get it wrong if all you do is stubbornly stick to your guns. I want to be able to adapt to changing landscapes.”
And Gregson is the epitome of adaptable. One minute writing film scores for Hollywood or music for video games, the next he’s lecturing on the science of sound or picking up his cello to devote himself to chamber music. No passing fancy, his relationship with classical music began on conventional lines. Having started cello lessons at the age of four, he eventually went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music. At some point in between he discovered electronics, an interest that later resulted in collaborative projects with the MIT Media Lab. In creating Bach Recomposed for Deutsche Grammophon, he has now translated a landmark of the cello repertoire into his own entirely unique musical language. Set for release on 19 October, the album is also the latest addition to DG’s “Recomposed” series that launched in 2005 and encompasses contributions by Matthias Arfmann, Jimi Tenor, Carl Craig/Moritz von Oswald, Matthew Herbert, and the critically acclaimed Vivaldi Recomposed by Max Richter. The live premiere of Gregson’s take on Bach will take place at Hamburg’s Reeperbahn Festival on 19 September, and the first single from the album, “Prelude 1.1”, is released today.
Bach Recomposed marks the start of his new and exclusive partnership with Deutsche Grammophon.
Christian Badzura, Director New Repertoire, Deutsche Grammophon, has welcomed Gregson to the yellow label: “I am very happy that Peter Gregson has joined Deutsche Grammophon, being both an exquisite classical performer and a composer, Peter creates unique and engaging compositions and soundscapes. His passion for and vast knowledge of music production and analogue sounds add further to his mix of talents. On his debut album Peter shows his true admiration for Bach’s lean and timeless music while combining it with his sophisticated yet playful musical language.”
As Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon, explains, “After a five-year break, we’re now adding to Deutsche Grammophon’s ‘Recomposed’ series with this new album from Peter Gregson. ‘Recomposed’ has stayed in the collective consciousness and has been a source of inspiration for many reworkings or reimaginings of classical repertoire standards. We’re delighted to have begun working with Peter, who is both an accomplished cellist and a versatile composer, equally at home in the genres of classical chamber music, film scoring and electronica.”Peter Gregson was born in Edinburgh in 1987. His breakthrough came when he was still only 23, with the release of his debut solo album Terminal (2010). This was followed by Lights in the Sky (2014) and Touch (2015). Music from his most recent albums, Quartets: One and Quartets: Two (2017), has now been used as the score for a ballet. Gregson Richter Jóhannsson, a two-track EP commissioned by Mute Records for their Short Circuit Festival and featuring cello arrangements of existing works by Max Richter and Jóhann Jóhannsson, appeared in 2011. Cello Multitracks (2012) grew from a collaboration with composer, producer and DJ Gabriel Prokofiev. Gregson’s first feature-length soundtrack score, for Alan Rickman’s A Little Chaos (2014), was nominated in the Public Choice category at the World Soundtrack Awards. He has since written music for Arran Shearing’s first feature, Forgotten Man (2017), and for Boundless, an openworld game for Playstation and PC. Gregson can be heard as solo cellist on a wide range of TV and film soundtracks, from the BBC’s Sherlock (2014–17) to Garth Davis’s Mary Magdalene (2018).
DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON – THE WORLD’S OLDEST AND MOST RENOWNED RECORD LABEL – LAUNCHES DG120
A CURATED GLOBAL PROGRAMME OF ACTIVITIES TO CELEBRATE ITS HISTORIC 120TH ANNIVERSARY
Berlin, 11 June 2018 – Deutsche Grammophon (DG), the world’s oldest and most renowned classical music label, will celebrate its 120th anniversary this year with an unprecedented, wide-ranging and ambitious international programme of activities to celebrate the Yellow Label’s illustrious past, dynamic present and prosperous future.
Throughout its unique history, Deutsche Grammophon has been a committed and long-term investor in culture, innovation, music and the arts, and during the 2018/2019 season DG120 will present a celebration of the cultural importance of classical music and the extraordinary artists who help bring it to life.
“These are exciting times for classical music,” observes Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon: “Deutsche Grammophon’s 120th anniversary is about sharing classical music’s emotional force and expressive beauty with as many people as possible around the world. The Yellow Label’s founders used new technology to inspire millions and – together with our family of artists – we are determined to continue what they started as we engage established and future audiences with our DG120 campaign. We are delighted to welcome Google Arts & Culture, Volkswagen Group and our other international partners who are supporting this ambitious global initiative.”
The carefully curated programme features multi-disciplinary activities, events, rare archival treasures and an exciting new product suite that will captivate music fans around the world. DG120 will include:
GLOBAL SERIES OF DG120 GALA CONCERTS WITH LEADING DG ARTISTS, INCLUDING A HISTORIC LAUNCH CONCERT IN BEIJING’S LEGENDARY FORBIDDEN CITY AREA
One of the defining characteristics of DG is its long-lasting relationships with the world’s greatest musicians. Today’s community of DG artists will play a central role in the DG120 celebrations with a programme of worldwide concerts that will take place in Beijing, Berlin, Hamburg, Hannover, Hong Kong, London, Seoul, Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo, with further events to be scheduled – Click here for full details of DG120 events.
The DG120 live festivities will begin on October 10, 2018 with a spectacular launch concert at the site of Beijing’s historic Imperial Ancestral Temple (Taimiao), which stands just outside the Forbidden City. The concert will feature the globally renowned Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Long Yu, who will perform Orff’s Carmina Burana with Aida Garifullina, Toby Spence and Ludovic Tézier, before being joined by Hélène Grimaud for Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major.
The Forbidden City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is an imperial palace complex that served as the home of emperors as well as the ceremonial and political centre of the Chinese government for almost 500 years, until the end of the Qing Dynasty. The Imperial Ancestral Temple, whose layout echoes that of the Forbidden City, was used by the imperial family on important occasions as a place in which to offer sacrifices to their ancestors. The DG120 concert will be a celebration of both Chinese classical music excellence and the global cultural resonance of Deutsche Grammophon. It will be the first classical music event to be held at the site since 2001, when it hosted a legendary performance by the Three Tenors: José Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti.
Other key DG120 events include performances at Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts by the Berlin Staatskapelle and the inimitable Maestro Barenboim, and further concerts throughout the anniversary year featuring performances from DG’s unbeatable roster of artists: Anne-Sophie Mutter, considered one of the greatest violinists of all time; Lang Lang, pioneering pianist and global cultural icon; Seong-Jin Cho, winner of the XVII International Chopin Piano Competition; and Max Richter, influential ground-breaking post-minimalist composer.
SPECIAL DG120 EDITIONS OF CULT YELLOW LOUNGE CLUB NIGHTS PLANNED FOR BEIJING, HONG KONG, SEOUL, SHANGHAI, TAIPEI AND TOKYO
Special DG120 editions of the label’s highly successful Yellow Lounge classical club nights are planned to take place throughout the year in Beijing, Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai, Taipei and Tokyo. The innovative club nights will be live streamed to fans around the world. Yellow Lounge will also visit Wolfsburg, home to DG120 Yellow Lounge partner Volkswagen Group.
“We share many values with Deutsche Grammophon,” notes Benita von Maltzahn of the Volkswagen Group. “The yellow label’s anniversary campaign is destined to boost the audience for classical music and raise the profile of the qualities of excellence and cultural exchange that the art-form represents. We are thrilled to be part of the journey and look forward to partnering with DG and to bringing our expertise to the amazing range of DG120 events.”
THE SHELLAC PROJECT: REDISCOVERED AND PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED TRACKS DIGITISED FROM THE HISTORIC DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON VAULTS IN COOPERATION WITH GOOGLE ARTS & CULTURE REFLECTING THE UNIQUE HISTORY OF THE LABEL – INCLUDING RECORDINGS MADE BY LOUIS ARMSTRONG AND BY LEO TOLSTOY
To coincide with the 120th anniversary, DG and Google Arts & Culture are creating digitised versions of rediscovered and previously unreleased tracks extracted from rare surviving Galvano metal masters, recorded in the early 1900s. These treasures, found within the deep vaults of the DG archive include a reading from one of his novels by iconic Russian author Leo Tolstoy, early recordings by legendary American jazz trumpeter Louis Armstrong, leading Russian bass Feodor Chaliapin and Austrian-born violinist and composer Fritz Kreisler.
These unique and remarkable recordings are in the process of being restored in association with Google Arts & Culture as part of a digitisation partnership, as DG adds them and details of their history to its parent company, Universal Music Group's already extensive global digitisation programme. 400 unique shellac records will be released over the next several months, beginning with 40 today, among them Louis Armstrong & his Orchestra with “St. Louis Blues”, recorded in 1934 and a recording of Pietro Mascagni conducting members of the Berlin Staatskapelle in a 1927 performance of the famous Intermezzo from his opera Cavalleria rusticana – which can be found here. In addition, tap dancer Andrew Nemr and Tilt Brush artist Atma created unique visualisations for some of these tracks.
"As inventor of the gramophone and founder of the world's oldest record labels, Emil Berliner brought music into everyday life,” comments Philipp Justus, Vice President Central Europe, Google. “We are excited about Deutsche Grammophon's collaboration with Google Arts & Culture to digitise hundreds of the world's oldest records, and to make this important chapter of music history more accessible to people everywhere."
Expanding on DG’s legacy around the invention of the gramophone by the label’s founder, Emil Berliner, DG will make cultural background material available: the result are 12 online exhibitions curated by DG opening on Google Arts & Culture’s platform as well as in their mobile app (Android & iOS) on June 11th. Users can learn about some of the legendary artists of classical music like Leonard Bernstein or Herbert von Karajan, how records are made, or how the invention of the gramophone brought music to our living rooms. The records will also be made available through DG’s own channels and on partner platforms including Google Play Music, YouTube Music, Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon.
120 YEARS OF UNRIVALLED RECORDING HISTORY AVAILABLE WITH RELEASE OF DELUXE BOX SET DG120: THE ANNIVERSARY EDITION AND KARAJAN-BEETHOVEN ART EDITION SERIES
At the centre of an extensive product suite for classical collectors will be DG120: The Anniversary Edition, a flagship 120-CD collection spanning 120 years of recorded music and presenting all the main genres of the label’s unrivalled catalogue, which will be released globally on 21 September. The deluxe box set will also contain some of the new remastered tracks that have been extracted from historic metal masters and feature hidden gems of the DG archive. Other unique products that will be released throughout the year include a vinyl edition of Herbert von Karajan’s legendary 1963 cycle of Beethoven’s nine symphonies. The Karajan-Beethoven LPs will be issued in a limited edition of 1,200 box sets, and in an additional super-deluxe version of which only 120 copies will be available, each accompanied by unique artworks from artist Gregor Hildebrandt, who uses fragments of pre-recorded cassette tape as raw material in his creative process. His Karajan-inspired art will be presented at Berlin’s new Deutsche Bank Forum for Art, Culture & Sports to launch the LP edition.
The DG120 initiative will also feature an exclusive range of merchandise created in partnership with leading global merchandise company Bravado; the publication by Verlhac Editions of a revised and updated version of State of the Art: Deutsche Grammophon – The Story in German/English and English/Mandarin editions; and a special mini-series documentary exploring the art of recording as invented by the Yellow Label. Further aspects of the campaign will be announced throughout 2018.
Supported by Universal Music Group, the world’s leading music-based entertainment company, Deutsche Grammophon’s DG120 anniversary campaign will shine a spotlight on classical music’s vitality and extraordinary contribution to global culture. The Yellow Label is characterised by its commitment to its artists and their creative longevity, its drive to discover and support excellence in signing new composers and artists and its determination to ensure a lasting legacy for an unrivalled catalogue. Its work in all these areas is underpinned by a constant desire to innovate, experiment and retain leadership in its field.
LONG YU AND SHANGHAI SYMPHONY TO JOIN DG’S FAMILY OF ARTISTS
Deutsche Grammophon’s exclusive recording deal with Long Yu and Shanghai Symphony Orchestra marks rising-star status of China’s oldest orchestra and pre-eminent conductor.
“Long Yu [is] a superpower of China’s burgeoning music world”, Washington Post
“From the outset there was no doubting the authority of [Long Yu’s] leadership or the soundness of his musicianship” bachtrack.com
Long Yu, China’s pre-eminent conductor on the international scene, and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra (SSO) have signed an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon. The new partnership is set to build on Long Yu’s critically acclaimed work as Music Director of the SSO and help promote the orchestra’s powerful blend of tradition and ambitious future vision. It will also enhance the SSO’s “Music Connecting Worlds” ethos. Their first DG recording, an album of works from the Chinese and Russian repertoires, will be released in 2019 to mark the SSO’s 140th anniversary and celebrate its status as China’s earliest symphony orchestra. In addition to making new albums with the orchestra, Deutsche Grammophon will also release earlier recordings from the SSO’s existing catalogue.
Since his appointment a decade ago, Long Yu has steered the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra to new heights of artistic excellence, helping it to attract many world-class musicians to its ranks. Under his leadership, it is determined to become the finest orchestra in Asia, a mission supported by its work with outstanding guest conductors and soloists and by the creation of its state-of-the-art home base, the intimate Shanghai Symphony Hall. Deutsche Grammophon’s commitment to the SSO and its chief conductor represents the latest advance in the orchestra’s development.
“Shanghai’s profile as an international city, open to the world and cultural exchange, makes it the ideal place to explore fresh ideas and look at ways of bringing together the best of Chinese and western culture,” observes Long Yu. “This is why it’s such an exciting moment for us to join Deutsche Grammophon’s global family of artists. We are determined to reach out to people across the world and will now be able to connect with new listeners through our recordings for the yellow label. I look forward to recording works by Chinese composers and sharing these and the wonderful artistry that the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra brings to the great symphonic repertoire with international audiences.”
Founded in 1879, the SSO has built bridges in recent years between East and West, not least through international touring and its Shanghai Orchestra Academy, a joint initiative between the orchestra, the Shanghai Conservatory of Music and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Long Yu, meanwhile, has forged a stellar career at home and overseas. Born in 1964, he studied at the Shanghai Conservatory, then at Berlin’s Hochschule der Künste. His time in Germany was influential in many ways, he notes: “It was in Berlin that I learned the most important things about life – not just from my music studies but from the city’s incredible cultural scene as a whole”. On his return to China in the 1990s, he began working with the country’s leading orchestras, his talents quickly recognised with a series of prestigious appointments.
Today, in addition to his work with the SSO, Long Yu is also Artistic Director of the China Philharmonic Orchestra and the Beijing Music Festival, which he founded in 1988, Music Director of the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra, co-director of MISA Shanghai Summer Festival and principal guest conductor of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. Long Yu’s guest-conducting work also includes collaborations with the New York Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, among others. He is dedicated to championing worldwide the work of China’s contemporary composers.
The recipient of many awards and honours, in 2014 Long Yu was appointed Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur in France. The following year he was given the honourable Chinese title of “National Literature and Art Worker of Excellence” and received both the Atlantic Council’s Global Citizen Award and Yale School of Music’s Samuel Simons Sanford Award. In April 2016 he was elected Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, and in June that same year was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany.
Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon, welcomed Long Yu and the SSO to the yellow label. “I am excited about the new partnership,” he said. “We will collaborate with these leading and inspiring musicians and institutions in the world’s most vibrant classical music environment. The artistic work Long Yu has accomplished with the Shanghai Symphony in the last decade is truly remarkable. It is reflected today in his high-profile international engagements and in the orchestra’s impressive touring schedule, including its debut at last year’s Lucerne Summer Festival. The recordings will help draw global attention to the outstanding musicianship of Long Yu and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and foster the already significant profile of Deutsche Grammophon in China.”
Fedina Zhou, President of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra commented: “Everyone at the SSO is thrilled to be partnering with Deutsche Grammophon to help us reach music lovers around the world. The SSO is not only Asia’s oldest orchestra, it is also one of the most vibrant, diverse and imaginative arts organisations in the region. Music is the greatest way of connecting people and our new partnership with DG will ensure that the SSO continues to bring the power of music to more and more people.”
Canal+ Group Partners with Universal Music Group to Launch Deutsche Grammophon+
The World's Oldest Record Label's Extensive Classical Repertoire on a Unique Curated Channel Now Available Only on Canal+
Paris, Thursday, April 26 – Canal+ Group and Universal Music Group launch Deutsche Grammophon+, an innovative channel featuring exclusive and specially curated content showcasing Deutsche Grammophon's prestigious catalogue.
An audio and audio-visual feast, the channel provides an extensive range of curated music hosting over 400 programmes and classical works at launch; including short documentaries, interviews, portraits, key artist and composer anniversaries, catalogue repertoire, albums, new releases and the openings of all operas in France. Content will be expanded upon regularly and Deutsche Grammophon's iconic artists will recommend their favourite works in personally curated playlists.
Content featured on Deutsche Grammophon+ includes previously-unreleased filmed concerts, most notably a concert shot in the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel, the audio will be released for the first time by a classical record company in Dolby ATMOS surround sound audio technology. Deutsche Gramophon has embarked on a program of 10 re-masterings of audio recordings into ATMOS to be released by the end of 2018 with a similar rollout planned for 2019. These feature highlight recordings from the analogue era, including artists such as Leonard Bernstein, Herbert von Karajan and Carlos Kleiber.
Deutsche Grammophon+ is a beautifully curated channel for Canal subscribers, classical music enthusiasts and new fans alike. A stylish, intuitive and entertaining gateway into the rich universe of classical music, its history and its leading lights, Deutsche Grammophon+ is available for streaming via myCANAL. Featuring cutting edge high-resolution recording technology, and for the first time ever, Dolby ATMOS. Deutsche Grammophon+ is currently available for all subscribers with the latest-generation Canal set-top boxes and will be offered via third-party set-top boxes at a later stage. The channel is available within the CANAL Family package, as well as the Panorama and Intégrale offers.
Gerald-Brice Viret, EVP Canal+ TV Channels: “We are very proud to offer the prestigious Deutsche Grammophon catalogue to our classical music loving subscribers. This new video on demand and streaming channel came to life thanks to the Universal Music, Deutsche Grammophon and CANAL+ teams’ expertise. All part of the Vivendi group, these teams have united their efforts in order to offer a particularly rich and innovative service. An unprecedented service in the media landscape.”
In partnership with Canal+, the channel will grow to encompass repertoire from other classical labels within Universal Music Group.
The channel's overarching goal is to encourage a passion for classical music and to showcase the full wealth of Deutsche Grammophon's classical repertoire and its extraordinary artists, from the most revered legends to the avantgarde, including new composers and young developing artists.
Clemens Trautmann, President, Deutsche Grammophon comments: “We are delighted to launch our game-changing classical service in partnership with the inspired team at Canal+. Our outstanding artists, composers and the incredible catalogues we are custodians of deserve a platform of equally high quality and ambition. Investing in artists and culture is part of our strategic vision, we will continue to innovate with our partners as we foster a deeper understanding of, and love for, classical music and develop new audiences and ways of enjoyment.”
The creation of Deutsche Grammophon+ illustrates the synergy between two complementary Vivendi businesses, Universal Music Group and the Canal+ Group, combining the creative force of premium brands across television and music.