Brahms Symphony no 3
Symphony no 3 was composed in a burst of inspiration during a summer spent travelling in the Rhine Valley. In just a few months this lovely work was complete with its joyful opening motif providing a well spring of ideas that nourish each of the four movements and link the piece together in a compelling and satisfying way. Brahms' friend and long time muse Clara Schumann wrote, “All the movements seem to be of one piece, one beat of the heart.”
Wagner Wesendonck Lieder
The Lieder are likewise the result of a highly charged summer that brought him into closer contact with the poet Mathilde Wesendonck, the wife of a generous patron and friend, with whom Wagner shared an intensely passionate connection. These songs, miniature individual pieces unusual amongst Wagner's operatic works, set poems that Mathilde sent to him over this period and contain the first versions of music that later appeared at the heart of the forbidden love scenes of Tristan and Isolde and Die Walkure. The songs chart blissful, carefree days spent together, dreams of happier times, desire, sorrow and longing.
Beethoven Ah! Perfido
An unhappy love affair provides the inspiration for Beethoven's concert aria, Ah! Perfido. The text, by an unknown librettist, has the spurned heroine vacillating between a desire for vengeance and a hope of mercy for her faithless lover.
About Tasos Strikos
Tassos was born in Athens where he studied piano, music theory and languages, as well as theatre studies at the University of Athens. He was introduced to the art of orchestral conducting by Miltos Logiadis.
He studied at the Academy of Music in Würzburg, Germany with Prof. Dr. Hermann Dechant (Orchestral Conducting), Prof. Jörg Straube (Choral Conducting) and Prof. Peter Falk (Opera). He graduated in 2001 gaining his Diploma with Honours and was at the same time appointed to the "Konzertdiplom" postgraduate degree course which he completed successfully in March 2003. In addition to his postgraduate studies he was tutored privately with Carlo Maria Giulini in Milan.
He was awarded the exclusive scholarship of the Academy of Athens for Studies in Orchestra Conducting Abroad and the Annual Scholarship of the Richard Wagner Foundation which gave him the rare opportunity to attend the Richard Wagner Festival of Bayreuth in 2002.
Even before graduating from the academy he was employed at the Mainfranken Opera House Theater in Würzburg as vocal coach and conductor.
In 2002 he moved to Vienna to work as Kapellmeister in charge of the “Kinderchor Augarten” group of the Vienna Boys Choir and in autumn 2003 he joined the Wiener Sängerknaben Asia Tour during which he appeared in all the major venues in China, Korea and Macao.
He currently lives in Vienna, from where he travels extensively to fulfil his many commitments as an international accompanist and conductor in great demand. His extensive repertoire encompasses a broad spectrum of works from the Baroque to the Avantgarde and he has premiered several contemporary compositions.
As a frequent guest conductor of I Maestri London, he has enriched his repertoire with a series of demanding works, including concertos by Beethoven, Berg, Walton, Respighi, Korngold, Suk, Vaughan Williams, Schumann, Mouquet, Lalo, Schnittke and others. Together with artistic director George Hlawiczka he founded the Arcadia Mundi Symphony Orchestra and he conducted the Inaugural Concert in St. John’s, Smith Square, London. He also took I Maestri on tour to Greece on several occasions, including to the Patmos International Festival of Religious Music.
Tasos has a reputation for inspiring young opera ensembles to high levels of performance. Rossini’s Cambiale di Matrimonio with Corfu Chamber Opera / Opera dei Giovani and more recently Adolphe Adam’s Le Toréador in the Homerion Cultural Centre of Chios were received with great enthusiasm. Another highlight was the Concert Series “Bravissimi", an Opera Gala for Young Opera Soloists, initiated by the Athens Chamber Opera. After a concert broadcast live on the radio the project was repeated in the Athens Megaron with the Greek Radio Symphony Orchestra and Choir with twelve soloists.
He has appeared as a guest conductor with orchestras including the Symphony Orchestra of the City of Athens, the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra of Greece, the Würzburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra and the Vienna Mozart Orchestra in venues from the Athens Megaron to St. John’s, Smith Square in London and the Vienna Radiokulturhaus, Konzerthaus and Musikverein. A tribute to Spain in the series "Musical Geography" with works by Albeniz and De Falla featuring pianist Danae Kara and mezzo Irini Karagianni as soloists was broadcast live on Greek national television.
In 2005 he initiated the ensemble Retro Vienna with which he brought to the stage a series of very successful productions. He is also the principal conductor of the GK Film Orchestra with which he has recorded scores by Adam Lukas, Victor Gangl and Gerrit Wunder.
Apart from his native Greek language, he rehearses and teaches in English, German, French, Italian, and Spanish, as well as speaking elementary Russian and Portuguese. He has even translated books into Greek (theater pieces as well as books on music theory).