Alain Altinoglu

The Frankfurt Radio Symphony welcome Alain Altinoglu as their new Music Director for the opening of their 2021/22 season. »Following a period with no audiences, there is a palpable sense of excitement for new beginnings and great curiosity about their artistic road together,« summarises Orchestra Manager Michael Traub. »Every single member of the orchestra and the whole team is looking forward to Alain Altinoglu’s arrival, and moreover, to bringing a multifaceted programme with new musical directions to their Frankfurt audiences.« The new Artist in Residence for the coming season will also make his mark: pianist Víkingur Ólafsson.

Eager anticipation: Music Director Alain Altinoglu

Alain Altinoglu is already familiar with his new home: »Back in summer 2019 at the Europa Open Air Concert on the banks of the Main, I had the most wonderful introduction to the musicians and the whole Frankfurt Radio Symphony team. Since then, I have got to know the city a little better each time I returned for various projects. Now I am energised to finally set to work on the next concert season with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony and present so many new concerts and wonderful programmes to our audiences.« Alain Altinoglu will introduce himself in person at the »40 Jahre Alte Oper« 40-year anniversary concert and at the first Symphony Concert of the season, to which he has also invited violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann. Later concerts take on a French theme, with Edgar Moreau, Pierre-Laurent Aimard and Renaud Capuçon.



Alain Altinoglu – Greeting 2021-2022

Alain Altinoglu - Grußwort 2021-2022
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Alain Atinoglu will conduct works including Claude Debussy’s »Le Martyre de Saint Sébastien«, Maurice Ravel’s famous orchestral adaptation of Modest Mussorgsky’s »Pictures at an Exhibition«, and compositions by Daníel Bjarnason and Sofia Gubaidulina. The new Music Director continues a Frankfurt Radio Symphony tradition with a performance of Gustav Mahler’s First Symphony. He is particularly focussed on educational outreach work with plans to develop new formats with the orchestra.

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Video: Season Press Conference

Here you can watch the Season Press Conference of the Frankfurt Radio Symphony with Alain Altinoglu from June 7, 2021 in full length.

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A three-month view ahead to the Frankfurt Radio Symphony 2021/22 season

»Our ultimate ambition is to meet our audiences in the usual way once again and to share our passion for music as soon as possible,« says Orchestra Manager Michael Traub. In order to remain flexible and able to react swiftly to on-going developments during the pandemic, the Frankfurt Radio Symphony has chosen not to publish a programme for the full season at this time. Instead, concert dates will be published and ticket sales opened in three-monthly cycles. In this way, the Orchestra can react swiftly with respect to changes to both ensemble size and venue capacity.

Ariane Matiakh

Alongside Music Director Alain Altinoglu, who will lead a total of six Symphony Concerts, the Orchestra will also be joined by guest conductors such as Ariane Matiakh, Marin Alsop and Karina Canellakis, as well as Krzysztof Urbański and Juraj Valčuha. May 2022 marks a reunion with former Music Director and current »Conductor Laureate« Paavo Järvi.

Steven Isserlis

In addition to »Artist in Resident« Víkingur Ólafsson, the orchestra also welcomes internationally recognised soloists Steven Isserlis, Pekka Kuusisto and Baiba Skride. Soloists from the Orchestra’s own ranks will also perform this season: Florin Silviu Illiescu will perform in the Auftakt concert series, while hornists Marc Gruber, Kristian Katzenberger, Maciej Baranowski and Charles Petit will appear in the 40th anniversary concert celebrating »40 Jahre Alte Oper«. This year’s film concert presents Fritz Lang's Metropolis under Frank Strobel’s direction.

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Season Outlook

Concerts: August – October 2021

Concert Flyer: August – October 2021
[PDF - 358kb]

Concert Dates 2021/22

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Víkingur Ólafsson: »Artist in Residence«

Víkingur Ólafsson

»I’m really looking forward to this residency,« says Icelandic pianist Víkingur Ólafsson ahead of his intensive collaboration with the Orchestra in the coming season. Described by the New York Times as the »Glenn Gould Islands«, his remarkable originality and powerful musical conviction have propelled him to his status as one of the most sought-after artists of our time. The 37-year-old musician made an unforgettable impression following the release of his two ground-breaking albums: »Philip Glass Piano Works« and Johann Sebastian Bach with Deutsche Grammophon.

Ólafsson will present four concert projects with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony during his residency, including Thomas Adès’ »In Seven Days« and the German premiere of »Processions«, a piano concerto by Icelandic composer Daníel Bjarnason. As part of the Auftakt concert series he will perform in the »Play and Conduct« concert. He will also give guest performances in the chamber concert series alongside musicians from the Frankfurt Radio Symphony in the hr-Sendesaal.

Education projects – Engaging youth through music

In a normal year, the Frankfurt Radio Symphony reaches over 20,000 children and young people across the length and breadth of Hesse. This successful outreach work is set to restart this season as far as possible, for example the »Spielzeitschule« project, in which the Frankfurt Radio Symphony works closely with schools in Hesse.

Anne-Sophie Bertrand beim Onlineunterricht

The orchestra had great success in local schools, engaging with the online teaching that started as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. School groups were able to apply for a music lesson with a pro from the Symphony Orchestra or the Big Band. »This project was really well received by teaching staff and most of all by pupils. It was an enriching experience all around, including for our musicians,« explains Orchestra Manager Michael Traub. »That’s why we’re considering whether, and how, we can continue this digital approach in the coming school yearAll remaining youth projects aim to resume once local covid regulations in Hesse allow.

Frankfurt Radio Symphony across all media channels

The Frankfurt Radio Symphony’s streaming presence continues in the 2021/22 season here on this website. Selected concerts will also be available on catch-up in the ARD Mediathek. The majority of performances will be broadcast live on hr2-kultur and internationally via the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). Selected events will also be broadcast on TV by hr-fernsehen, 3sat and ARTE Concert.

Tickets and advance sales

The Frankfurt Radio Symphony continues to offer the highest musical quality at affordable prices. Subscriptions remain suspended in the coming season. Individual concert tickets are available from 15th June on this website and Tel.: (069) 155-2000, -4111, and -6655 or online at

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