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Another Shostakovich premiere

At this year's International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch, a choral piece composed by Shostakovich by with reference to Ukraine will be premiered.

This year's International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch, which will take place from 30 June to 3 July 2022 in the spa town of Gohrisch (Saxon Switzerland), will once again feature a world premiere by Dmitri Shostakovich: The choral piece "Glory to the Shipbuilders" was added to the programme at short notice and will be heard for the first time in a public concert performance. The a cappella work will be presented at the beginning of the opening concert on 30 June by members of the Saxon Vocal Ensemble under the direction of Matthias Jung in the Concert barn of Gohrisch.

The so far unknown work was discovered by the Russian musicologist Dr Olga Digonskaya, head archivist of the Moscow Shostakovich Archive. Over the past decades, she has brought countless Shostakovich manuscripts to light and was awarded the International Shostakovich Prize Gohrisch in 2021 for her services. The musicologist writes about her latest discovery: "Shostakovich's song 'Glory to the Shipbuilders' is virtually unknown, although its title occasionally appears in musical publications." After extensive archival research, she discovered that Shostakovich gave the song in 1964 as a gift to the workers of the important shipyard "Nosenko" in the Ukrainian city of Nikolayev for its 175th anniversary. Digonskaya discovered the complete text of the song by the Ukrainian poet Aleksander Uvarov and finally also sketches for the choral composition in Shostakovich's legacy: this clearly proves the authorship.

"We are extremely grateful that we can continue the history of Shostakovich premieres in Gohrisch with this new rarity," says Tobias Niederschlag, Artistic Director of the International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch. In recent years, works by Shostakovich have already been regularly premiered in Gohrisch, including posthumous fragments from the opera "The Nose", an impromptu for viola and piano as well as numerous early piano works by the composer. "Olga Digonskaya already told me last year about an unknown choral piece, but there were still many unanswered questions. At the time, no one could have guessed that it was a work with a concrete reference to Ukraine, which has taken on a frighteningly topical relevance in the present time. In the opening concert of this year's festival we put it as a sort of 'motto'."

In addition to works by Dmitri Shostakovich, the programme of the Shostakovich Festival 2022 also includes a number of works by Ukrainian composers - above all by Valentin Silvestrov, who is personally expected in Gohrisch and will be awarded this year's Shostakovich Prize.


 Further information and tickets at

Shostakovich – Silvestrov – Gubaidulina

The programme of the 13th International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch

In its 13th year, the International Shostakovich Festival is dedicated not only to works by Shostakovich, but also to the music of Ukrainian composers. The festival organisers are thus reacting to the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, against the background of which the music of Dmitri Shostakovich regains a frightening topicality. The programme includes numerous works by Valentin Silvestrov, probably the most important living composer from Ukraine, who is also expected in Gohrisch in person: The now 84-year-old, who fled from Kiev to Berlin a few weeks ago, is to receive this year's Shostakovich Prize on 2 July 2022. On this occasion, he will also perform his own works on the piano.

Premieres and first performances
In addition, Silvestrov's 3rd String Quartet and his 2 Elegies for String Orchestra will be performed in Germany for the first time at the Shostakovich Festival. The Documentary "V. Silvestrov", made in Ukraine in 2020, will also be shown in Germany for the first time at the festival. In the final concert, pianist Alexei Lubimov and soprano Viktoriia Vitrenko will perform works by Silvestrov and Franz Schubert from the concert programme that was prematurely interrupted by the Moscow police a few weeks ago. The programme will now be performed in its entirety in Gohrisch.

In addition to the music of Valentin Silvestrov, the opening concert on 30 June 2022 will also feature works by the Ukrainian composer Yuri Povolotsky, including two world premieres. 

„New“ works by Dmitri Shostakovich
There will also be "new" works by Dmitri Shostakovich in Gohrisch: Dmitri Jurowski will premiere his own arrangement of the song cycle on poems by Marina Tsvetaeva op. 143a in a performance evening by the Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden. For the first time, he will also present to the public an extended concert suite of the incidental music to "The Human Comedy" op. 37, arranged by his father Mikhail Jurowski. Mikhail Jurovsky, who had a decisive influence on the Shostakovich Festival in its early years, died in Berlin in March 2022. He was originally to conduct this performance evening, which is now dedicated to his memory.

In addition to works by Shostakovich and Silvestrov, the programme also includes some compositions by Sofia Gubaidulina. The great Russian composer and Shostakovich Prize winner 2017 celebrated her 90th birthday last autumn.

Re-encounters and numerous first-time appearances
The concerts will once again feature renowned artists: The pianists Yulianna Avdeeva and Elisaveta Blumina as well as the soprano Evelina Dobračeva will return to Gohrisch. For the first time, violinist Vadim Gluzman, pianist Alexei Lubimov, soprano Viktoriia Vitrenko and conductor Dmitri Jurowski will perform in the Gohrisch Concert Barn. In addition, several soloists, members of the Sächsische Staatskapelle, are involved in the chamber concerts. Also this year, all of the artists will perform in Gohrisch without a fee.

This year's cooperation is particularly close with the Sächsische Staatskapelle and the Semperoper Dresden. In addition to the non-subscription concert on the eve of the festival (conductor: Omer Meir Wellber), the premiere of a new production of Shostakovich's opera "The Nose" at the Semperoper (conductor: Petr Popelka) will also take place during the festival period, accompanied by a scientific symposium at the Dresden Academy of Music. The programme is thus more diverse than ever before and will span an arc from Shostakovich's piano and chamber music to the great symphonies and opera.

Photo exhibition by Matthias Creutziger
A retrospective of the first 12 years of the International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch is provided by a photo exhibition by Matthias Creutziger, who has accompanied the festival every year from the beginning.

"After two years in which, due to the pandemic, the Shostakovich Festival took place virtually or with an excursion to the Festspielhaus Dresden-Hellerau, we are extremely happy to return to Gohrisch. We felt a great need to focus the festival on the music by Ukrainian composers, especially by Valentin Silvestrov, in view of the terrible war in Ukraine. We are very much looking forward to this great composer who represents the contemporary musical culture of his country like no other." Tobias Niederschlag, Artistic Director of the International Shostakovich Festival Gohrisch

Individual tickets go on sale on 29 April 2022. 

Click here to have a look at the programme.