Lars Vogt piano
Concerts and recitals in Europe, Asia and the USA followed swiftly after the German pianist Lars Vogt won second prize in the 1990 Leeds International Piano Competition. Vogt appeared as soloist with orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the NHK Symphony Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic and the London Symphony Orchestra, with Christian Thielemann, Daniel Harding and Claudio Abbado amongst others. He founded the Spannungen Festival in the German town of Heimbach in 1998; he was also pianist in residence with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra during the 2003-2004 season, in which capacity he appeared in Salzburg, Berlin and elsewhere under Simon Rattle. Lars Vogt is also a gifted and well-respected teacher; the educational project Rhapsody in School that he founded in 2005 enjoyed great success in Germany. He was appointed Professor in piano by the Hannover Musikhochschule in 2012.
Mariss Jansons studied violin and conducting in St. Petersburg and furthered his studies in Vienna and Salzburg with Hans Swarovsky and Herbert von Karajan. He was appointed assistant conductor to Yevgeny Mravinsky at the St. Petersburg orchestra in 1973; his father was also a conductor there at that time. He was chief conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra from 1979-2000, where he gained an international reputation. Mariss Jansons was appointed music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1997, a post that he would hold until 2004; he was also appointed chief conductor of the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra in 2003. After his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 1988 he returned almost every year to Amsterdam, where he was appointed chief conductor of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 2004. Mariss Jansons has been awarded various honours and awards for his services to music, these including an honorary Menbership of the Royal Academy of Music in London and of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Vienna, the Austrian Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst, the Latvian Order of the Three Stars and the Bavarian Order of Maximilian. The Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung awarded him its Music Prize in 2013, this award is considered as a Nobel Prize for music; in the same year he was also made a Knight in the Orde van de Nederlandse Leeuw.