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Barbican and Southbank Centre present Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project

Andris Nelsons with his arms raised. He's holding a conductor's baton in his right arm, and he appears to be coming out of the black background.

The Barbican and the Southbank Centre to Present:
Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project
featuring Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the Boston Symphony Orchestra
9-13 May 2022

The Barbican Centre and the Southbank Centre today jointly announced a special partnership to bring conductor Andris Nelsons and his two orchestras from both sides of the Atlantic to London for a series of four concerts in 2022: Nelsons conducts the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig at the Barbican on 9 and 10 May, and the Boston Symphony Orchestra on 12 and 13 May in the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall in an exploration into the orchestral music of Richard Strauss.

Tickets for the Barbican concerts will go on sale from 22 October and for the Southbank Centre concerts from 9 November.

Following a period of great artistic deprivation due to the pandemic, this project is a sign of hope and togetherness”, said Andris Nelsons – music director of both the Leipzig and Boston orchestras, which for the past years have been collaborating closely in an alliance under Nelsons’ direction. Having recently opened their concert halls again to full-capacity audiences, the two UK arts centres have now joined forces to bring the partnership of these two exceptional orchestras to London for a one-of-a-kind residency.  

As we emerge from the difficult times caused by the pandemic, we are delighted to collaborate with the Southbank Centre, as well as our colleagues from KD SCHMID and Askonas Holt, to realise Andris Nelsons’ bold vision for The Strauss Project. With two of the world’s most iconic orchestras and soloists such as Yuja Wang, Lise Davidsen and Marlis Petersen united under Andris’ baton, this is sure to be a joyous celebration of Strauss’ genius”, said Huw Humphreys, Head of Music at the Barbican.

In a post-Brexit, post-pandemic world, collaboration is increasingly important to ensure the arts community continues to achieve its shared ambition to bring great music, and great artists, to as many people as possible. It is in this spirit that we are delighted that the Barbican is joining the Southbank Centre, along with our friends at Askonas Holt and KD SCHMID, to bring this ambitious project to London”, said Toks Dada, Head of Classical Music at the Southbank Centre.   

In the true spirit of the alliance, we’re delighted to be venturing into this new partnership with our friends at Askonas Holt to present two top international orchestras in London in collaboration with the Barbican and the Southbank Centre”, said Karen McDonald, Managing Director at KD SCHMID. Donagh Collins, Chief Executive at Askonas Holt adds: “We are very much looking forward to this partnership, which can hopefully inspire a model for presenting orchestras in London, and beyond, into the future”.

The alliance between the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Gewandhausorchester Leipzig was formed under Andris Nelsons’ direction in 2017. It is a multidimensional collaboration designed to create opportunities for the two orchestras, their administrations and for their respective audiences. In addition to new commissions and learning programmes, they have been celebrating their shared mutual heritage while also shedding light on the traditions of each ensemble and the cities they are proud to call home. “The universal power of music binds us beyond borders and continents. This is the basis of our alliance”, said Nelsons. “Our Strauss project is particularly close to my heart. Looking ahead to these performances has been a great source of motivation and consolation during the difficult times of lockdown. Richard Strauss’ works belong to my very favourites. To be able to go on tour, performing his music with my two beloved orchestras, is a dream come true!

Both orchestras have a strong history of performing Strauss’ music – and were also conducted by the composer himself. “Strauss’ music is about beauty itself. His music has plenty of humour, irony, sarcasm – but those characteristics are followed by music so touching that it has the power to move listeners to tears. This is the real Strauss: someone who speaks from the bottom of his heart and the depth of his soul”, describes Nelsons.



Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project featuring Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and Boston Symphony Orchestra, presented by the Barbican and the Southbank Centre in partnership with KD SCHMID and Askonas Holt: 

1)    Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project, Part I:

Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Mon 9 May 2022, Barbican Hall, 7.30pm, Tickets £15 – 75, programme featuring Richard Strauss’ Macbeth,
Der Rosenkavalier Suite and Ein Heldenleben

2)    Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project, Part II:

with Yuja Wang and Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Tue 10 May 2022, Barbican Hall, 7.30pm, Tickets £15 – 75, programme featuring Richard Strauss’ Don Juan,
 and Also Sprach Zarathustra

3)    Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project, Part III:

with Lise Davidsen and Boston Symphony Orchestra, Thurs 12 May 2022, Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm, Tickets £15 – 75, programme featuring Richard Strauss’ An Alpine Symphony and Four Last Songs.

4)    Andris Nelsons: The Strauss Project, Part IV:

with Marlis Petersen and Boston Symphony Orchestra, Fri 13 May 2022, Royal Festival Hall, 7.30pm, Tickets £15 – 75, programme features Richard Strauss’ Dance of the Seven Veils and the Final Scene from ‘Salomé’ and Sinfonia domestica.


Notes to Editors

Barbican Box Office:  

Southbank Centre Box Office: 
Alternatively call the Box Office on 0203 879 9555
(Monday - Friday 10am - 2pm)

About the Southbank Centre
The Southbank Centre is the UK’s largest arts centre occupying a prominent riverside location that sits in the midst of London’s most vibrant cultural quarter on the South Bank of the Thames. We exist to present great cultural experiences that bring people together and we achieve this by providing the space for artists to create and present their best work and by creating a place where as many people as possible can come together to experience bold, unusual and eye-opening work. We want to take people out of the everyday, every day. 

The site has an extraordinary creative and architectural history stretching back to the 1951 Festival of Britain. The Southbank Centre is made up of the Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room and Hayward Gallery as well as being home to the National Poetry Library and the Arts Council Collection. It is also home to four Resident Orchestras (London Philharmonic Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Sinfonietta and Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment) and four Associate Orchestras (Aurora Orchestra, BBC Concert Orchestra, Chineke! Orchestra and National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain).  

Join the conversation @southbankcentre

About Askonas Holt
Askonas Holt is one of the world’s leading arts management companies, specialising in the field of classical music. Working globally, Askonas Holt nurtures both established and emerging talent through personal, bespoke management, as well as arranging international tours for the world’s leading orchestras and dance companies. Throughout its long history, Askonas Holt has built its reputation on the care devoted to all aspects of artists’ careers, to relationships with promoters and venues across the world, and to each of the tours and projects they manage. At the heart of everything Askonas Holt does is a passion for classical music and the performing arts, and a desire to bring high quality performances to every corner of the world. We’re Making Music Happen.

KD SCHMID is one of the world’s leading music management companies, with offices in Hannover, London and Berlin. We specialise in strategic artist management and arranging international tours and projects. For us, “Konzertdirektion” is not simply a business model. It represents our passion – as multi-faceted as classical music. Since 1959 we have been at the side of international artists, orchestras and organizers, accompanying their careers and supporting their creativity. Mutual trust and an absolute passion for music – these are the basic values that build our often long-term cooperation with our artists. We share our artists' love of music and work with our international network every day to make the whole world a stage for their music. We always stand by our principle: Your music means the world to us!