Chamber Arts Series

Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet

Saturday, February 9, 2013, 8:00 pm
Rackham Auditorium

What you will hear? An exquisite blend of wind instruments performing a selection of wind quintet pieces.

“An enthralled crowd, listening agog to the amazing woodwind [quintet] from the Berlin Philharmonic, heard wind playing that was out of this world…Equally, however, the performance provided a unique opportunity for a microcosmic view of the philosophy and practice of the world’s most famous orchestra. Everything that you could see and hear, in intimate detail, that made this quintet so breathtakingly perfect, was a representation of the way the full band operates. An astonishing experience.” (The Herald, Glasgow)

An exquisite blend of wind instruments performing a selection of wind quintet pieces, the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet continues to astonish audiences worldwide with their range of expression, tonal spectrum, and conceptual unity. Indeed, many listeners and critics agree that the ensemble has succeeded in virtually redefining the sound of the classic wind quintet, comprised of flute, oboe, clarinet, horn, and bassoon. U-M Professor Martin Katz, one of the most sought-after collaborative pianists, joins the ensemble for the Poulenc Sextet.


Mozart Fantasy for Mechanical Organ, K. 608 (arr. M Hasel)
Kalevi Aho Windquintet (2006)
Ibert: Trois pieces brèves (1939)
Milhaud La cheminée du roi Rene (1939)
Poulenc Sextet for Wind Quintet and Piano (1939)

Program Book [PDF]

Also see

The Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet (Philharmonisches Bläserquintett Berlin) was founded in 1988, during the era of Herbert von Karajan, the first permanently established wind quintet in the famous orchestra’s rich tradition of chamber music. The members are living musical witnesses to the hugely productive and influential musical partnerships of the Berlin Philharmonic not only with Karajan, but also with its two most recent Musical Directors: Claudio Abbado and Sir Simon Rattle. As members of the Berlin Philharmonic, they have also enjoyed important collaborations with every other major conductor of their times, whether Leonard Bernstein, Carlos Kleiber, Sir John Barbirolli, Günter Wand, Carlo Maria Giulini, Bernard Haitink, Riccardo Muti, Pièrre Boulez, James Levine or Daniel Barenboim.

The Berlin Philharmonic Woodwind Quintet was last in Ann Arbor under UMS auspices in 1995.

Martin Katz has been dubbed “the gold standard of collaborative pianists” by The New York Times. For four decades, his performances on five continents have been in partnership with the world’s vocal luminaries. His many recordings, feature songs, and arias in 10 languages reflect his immense repertoire. His first book, The Complete Collaborator, published by Oxford University Press, has received rave reviews and is fast becoming the standard guide for appreciating this specialized niche in the music world. In addition to his work at the keyboard, Mr. Katz has been lauded for his appearances on the podium. His editions of Handel and Rossini operas have been performed at the Metropolitan, in Ottawa, Houston, and Tokyo. Finally, the profile of Martin Katz is completed by his commitment to teaching. He has chaired the collaborative piano program at the University of Michigan for 25 years, and is honored to hold the Artur Schnabel Professorship. Guest teaching appearances also fill his schedule year after year, including Songfest in Los Angeles, the National Theatre of Tokyo, San Francisco Opera’s prestigious Merola program, and the Santa Fe Opera.

This concert marks Mr. Katz’s 34th appearance under UMS auspices.