John Williams and Anne-Sophie Mutter in Vienna

Legendary Concert at the Musikverein with the Wiener Philharmoniker filmed and recorded John Williams and Anne-Sophie Mutter in Vienna

22 Jan 2020 – John Williams is the best-known and most acclaimed film composer in the world today, particularly renowned for his work with star directors Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. His many achievements in the film-music world include 5 Academy Awards (with 52 Oscar nominations), 5 Emmy Awards, 4 Golden Globe Awards and 24 Grammy Awards (with 67 Grammy nominations).

In August 2019, Deutsche Grammophon released Across the Stars: The Music of John Williams, featuring new adaptations of some of his most-loved movie themes written specially for soloist Anne-Sophie Mutter. Williams himself conducted the recording and, on 18 and 19 January 2020, he took to the podium for the first time to conduct the Wiener Philharmoniker at the Vienna Musikverein, receiving a standing ovation before a note had been played. The programme included excerpts from many of his most iconic scores, including those for Star Wars, Jurassic Park, E.T., and the Indiana Jones and Harry Potter films. For some of the numbers, John Williams was joined on stage by virtuoso violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter, where she too was greeted with thunderous applause.

TV recording. Good news for all those not lucky enough to have been at the Musikverein in person: ServusTV and Bernhard Fleischer Moving Images (BFMI) captured every detail for TV audiences, via ten cameras placed around the hall, with a broadcast on ServusTV in Austria scheduled for spring 2020. Viewers will be treated to an incomparable television concert experience. Hosted by Nicola Löwenstein, the film will also feature footage of Williams and Mutter in conversation about the place of film music in the concert hall and about working with the world’s greatest orchestras.

Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon, is delighted about the Yellow Label’s involvement in this project: “We’re talking about an absolutely extraordinary live experience. Deutsche Grammophon is thrilled to be working with its media partners to make it possible for the very special atmosphere of the Musikverein to be conveyed to a global audience. The Wiener Philharmoniker, with the composer himself at the helm, brought its rich sound and a wonderful range of nuances to his music. It was also an absolute privilege to witness at such close quarters the palpable sense of mutual inspiration felt by Anne-Sophie Mutter and John Williams, who are good friends as well as colleagues.”

“BFMI first had the opportunity to work with John Williams back in 2014. Then as now, I feel it as an accolade and a stamp of quality for the work we do. I’m very happy to be playing a part in making this exceptional coverage available to a wider TV audience”, comments Salzburg-based producer Bernhard Fleischer.

“Everyone in the Musikverein could feel the special energy flowing between John Williams, Anne-Sophie Mutter and the Wiener Philharmoniker. We had everything we could ask for: incredible music, a magical orchestral sound and peerless virtuosity,” adds Frank Gerdes, Head of Cultural Dept, ServusTV.

The concert film recording will be distributed beyond Austria, Germany and Switzerland by the Wiener Philharmoniker and Deutsche Grammophon. A audio recording of the concert will be issued by Deutsche Grammophon later in 2020.

Vienna Musikverein programme:

  • “The Flight to Neverland” from Hook
  • Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind
  • “Hedwig’s Theme” from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
  • Theme from Sabrina
  • “Donnybrook Fair” from Far and Away
  • “Devil’s Dance” from The Witches of Eastwick
  • “Adventures on Earth” from E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
  • Theme from Jurassic Park
  • “Dartmoor, 1912” from War House
  • “Out to Sea/Shark Cage Fugue” from Jaws
  • “Marion’s Theme” from Raiders of the Lost Ark
  • “The Rebellion is Reborn” from Star Wars: The Last Jedi
  • “Luke & Leia” from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi
  • Main Title from Star Wars
<p>© Terry Linke / Deutsche Grammophon</p>
© Terry Linke / Deutsche Grammophon
<p>© Terry Linke / Deutsche Grammophon</p>
© Terry Linke / Deutsche Grammophon

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