SWR Freiburg Finale (detail) View full image

Fond farewells in Freiburg for Roth

Orchestra merger ends 70 years of history

François-Xavier Roth's six years as Chief Conductor of the SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden & Freiburg comes to an end on Sunday. The orchestra is being merged with another and will cease to exist after its two final concerts this weekend. The orchestra has a 70 year history at the forefront of the promotion of new music through its broadcasts and particularly a long relationship with the Donaueschingen Musiktage (founded in 1921).

On Saturday, a free, open-air concert will take place in Münsterplatz, in front of the imposing 13th-century Freiburg Münster. The concert will include works played by amateur local musicians jointly with the orchestra, one of the collaborations between orchestra and Freiburg that has been a feature of Roth's leadership.

 The final concert on Sunday features works, selected by the orchestra and Roth, particularly associated with this orchestra: a typically thought-provoking and challenging programme including Mahler, Ligeti, Schubert, Boulez, Ives, Stravinsky and Mark André. So great was the demand for tickets for this concert that it immediately sold out last November and is being live-streamed into the plaza outside the Konzerthaus, Freiburg, and broadcast live on SWR2.