Cikker, Elgar, Beethoven, Kevin Griffiths and Jozef Lupták

9th concert of the season

24. 5. 2019 at 19.00

Ján Cikker: Memories, Op. 25
Edward Elgar: Cello Concerto in E Minor, Op. 85
Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 36
Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra
Jozef Lupták (SK), cello
Kevin Griffiths (UK), conductor

Concert tickets available at

Jozef Lupták is one of the most prominent figures in Slovak musical scene. He graduated from the University of Performing Arts (VŠMU) in his hometown, Bratislava and the Royal Academy of Music in London (R. Cohen). He holds the “Award of the Minister of Culture” for his successes as a concert cello soloist and artistic director and founder of the festival Convergence, was nominated for a prestigious “Cristal Wing Award” in Slovakia and was awarded several international Prizes, such as "Cello Competition of Slovak Conservatories" in 1986, "Jury Prize" at the Murcia Cello Competition in Spain, the "BANFF Centre Long Term Residency Scholarship", the "May Mukle Cello Prize" at the Royal Academy of Music in London and in 2009, the “Frico Kafenda Award”.
Jozef is actively performing throughout the world. His concert highlights from the recent years include performing with The Hilliard Ensemble in Kosice, recitals in USA, performing during the Winter Olympics in Vancouver in the Slovak Repre House, concerts at festivals in Charleston (with Robert Cohen) and Arcus Temporum in Pannonhalma (with Gija Kancheli and Gidon Kremer) as well as world premieres of the Cello Concertos by Peter Machajdík (BHS) Jevgeni Irshai (Convergence Festival) and Daniel Matej (with Slovak Chamber Orchestra).
A special place in his recent musical explorings belongs to multicultural and multiethnical projects - afterPhurikane (ancient Roma songs played anew by proffesional musicians and authentic Roma singers) and Chassidic Songs (respective to its name a project which he created with the Bratislava Rabbi Baruch Myers). Both of them were issued on CDs and are sought by audiences and festival organisers throughout Europe.
His path as a concert soloist has brought him to play with conductors like Andrew Parrott, Jiří Bělohlávek, Leoš Svárovský, Daniel Gazon, Domonkos Héja or Andrew Mogrelia. He plays regularly with renown chamber music partners from Slovakia and abroad – Nora Skuta, Igor Karško, Ronald Šebesta, Robert Cohen, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Beny Schmid, Rena Sharon, Peter Mikuláš, Mark Gothoni, etc. But Jozef does not limit himself to the “classical”. Being very open and versatile, he often joins cross-genre projects and cooperates with such artists as Marián Varga (Slovak rock legendary pianist/composer), Julee Glaub (American singer), Jeff Johnson (… singer and producer), Brian Dunning (Irish flutist), Krisztián Gergye (Hungarian dancer) and many others.
His London experience together with the missing chamber music scene in his hometown inspired him to create an international chamber music festival Konvergencie (Convergence). From its first year in 2000 the festival has received superior reviews by both professional and general audience and is marked by a very special atmosphere. Jozef, as the founder and artistic director/manager, is carefully choosing projects to bring the best quality of performance and unexpected artistic combinations. He has introduced many prominent artists to the Slovak audience - The Hilliard Ensemble, Jan Garbarek, Doric String Quartett, Fine Arts Quartett – just to name a few of them. In 2003 he was appointed artistic director for the 7th International Festival of Contemporary Music Melos-Ethos in Bratislava.
Part of Jozef's search for his own musical expression is active communication and work with contemporary composers (Tenney, Krauze, Godár, Zagar, Irshai, Matej, Ayres, Wolff, Jeffery, Machajdík, etc.). Natural outcome of these collaborations is a number of world premiere compositions and recordings. His discography includes the World Premiere CD of Vladimír Godár’s “Music for Cello”, 2-CD of complete Bach Solo Cello Suites (first Slovak recording) as well as his own project “CELLO” – recording of five new compositions inspired by Bach´s 1st Suite, including his speciality – improvisations using cello, his own voice and beatbox. His most recent classical release is a live recording of his London Debut concert in St. John’s Smith Square. He is currently planning to produce a CD of his cello and vocal improvisations as well as CD series reliving the concerts from the Convergence Festival.


The London-born conductor Kevin Griffiths (1978) has been Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the Collegium Musicum Basel since 2011.
The season 2016/17 sees Kevin Griffiths conducting the Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland Pfalz combined with a CD production and the Lichtenstein Symphony Orchestra for the closing concert of the Vaduz Festival. Because of his interest in historically informed performance, Kevin Griffiths also enjoys interpreting the music from the Barock and Classical periods. In June 2017 he conducted the ensemble Musica Aeterna in Bratislava performing on period instruments. He has just conducted the Robert Schumann Philharmonie in Chemnitz and has received an immediate reinvitation. He has returned to the Orchestra della svizzera italiana, to the Menuhin Festival Gstaad, the Jena Philharmonie and looks forward to returning to the Göttingen Symphony Orchestra, the Brandenburg Sate Symphony Orchestra, the Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie and the Musikkollegium Winterthur.
Kevin Griffiths has also been a welcome returning guest to many other orchestras including the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, the hr - Symphony Orchestra Frankfurt Main, the Frankfurt Opera and Museum Orchestra, the Basel Symphony Orchestra, the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the Badische Staatskapelle, the Philharminic Orchestra Heidelberg, the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, the Meininger Hofkapelle, the Orquesta Sinfonica de Navarra, the Slovak RadioSymphony Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment London and the Hallé Orchestra
Manchester. With the Berlin Chamber Orchestra he went on tour and performed in the Berliner Philharmonie.
As founder and principal conductor of the London Steve Reich Ensemble, Kevin Griffiths has also won international recognition for his commitment to contemporary music. The Ensemble performs at home and abroad and has won the acclaimed Diapason d’Or award for its debut CD under the label CPO. His second highly praised recording with the ensemble was published in September 2011 by EMI Classics.
To be released for the label CPO are four other CD-recordings with works by Haydn, Mozart, Romberg, Hans Huber, Paul Juon, J. Wilhelm Hertel and J. E. Brandl.
Artists with whom Kevin Griffiths has worked include Sir James Galway, Vesselina Kasarova, Fazil Say, Isabelle van Keulen, Giuliano Carmignola, Sergei Nakariakov, Paul Lewis, Alexander Rudin, Dmitry Sitkovetsky and Stefan Dohr, Wenzel Fuchs, Jonathan Kelly, Markus Weidmann from the Berlin Philharmonic. Next season he will be working with Pierre-Laurant Aimard and Andreas Scholl.
Kevin Griffiths has premiered works by composers such as Daniel Schnyder, Lera Auerbach, Elena Firsova, Steven Mackey and Rodolphe Schacher. He contributed to the new discovery of the romantic violin concertos by Paul Juon and Hans Huber, whose works he premiered and recorded. Besides his concert repertoire, he has conducted several opera productions including Ravel’s double bill “L’heure espagnole” and “L’enfant et les sortileges”, “Die Fledermaus” by Johann Strauss and Mozart’s “Don Giovanni”. Kevin Griffiths likes to take part in extraordinary projects, especially in the context of various sciences and astronomy. He has, for example, directed the music to a documentary film about the particle accelerator CERN in Geneva.
In 2010 he won the 2nd prize at the International Conducting Competition " Sir Georg Solti " in Frankfurt Main and in 2010/11 won the competition (Melgaard Young Conductor Scheme) for the position of apprentice conductor with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment London.
Kevin Griffiths studied with David Zinman in Aspen (USA) 2004 and 2005, with Colin Metters and Sir Colin Davies at the Royal Academy of Music in London and with Clark Rundell and Sir Mark Elder at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. He has furthermore assisted Sir Simon Rattle, Vladimir Jurowski, Leonard Slatkin, Trevor Pinnock and Sir Mark Elder.

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