Det var kjemi fra første takt.

Han-Na Chang

To dearly beloved audience - friends and family of TSO

Finally! With greatest anticipation and full of hope, I welcome you to our new season! I am looking forward so very much, words are not enough to express my excitement and enthusiasm - to reuniting with the musicians and all of you!

After my concerts with TSO in January 2020, the Pandemic suddenly broke out and paralyzed the world. The TSO has fortunately and wonderfully managed to perform uninterrupted through the many Pandemic restrictions, but for other institutions and artists around the world, the Pandemic forced a complete stop to music making. Borders were closed, international travel was banned and people were not allowed to gather together. We have collectively lived through so much suffering, grief, pain, goodbyes, deferred dreams and sacrifices - all accompanied by silence, separation, and isolation - a very difficult time for every one of us around the world. But at last, after many months of perseverance and patience, we can start to think of Life anew, even with the pain of the Pandemic still lingering in us.

I thought a long time about what music to share together with you during this exceptional time. And in the process of putting together our season, I was once again deeply struck by how fundamentally Music is joined to all aspects of Life. For as long as there has been a society and civilization, music has accompanied daily lives of humanity. Hunting calls, harvest songs, wedding bells, funeral dirges, worship psalms… and nowadays, the myriad of on-demand music all serve to enrich and complete the “human” experience.

Why is music always so present and essential in our lives - both during mundane and extraordinary times? Because Music is able to translate intensely personal feelings - tragedies and triumphs - into a common universal experience. Because Music transcends the “individual”, succeeding to profoundly communicate with multitudes of people, overcoming all kinds of artificial barriers such as age, gender, race. Music speaks of fundamental human experience directly to our hearts - its subject is all the millions of emotions we carry in us everyday. Music communicates what words can not; it heals us in a way that no medicine can. Great Music is a Force that brings people together with a common thread of emotional experience, a shared spiritual value, a togetherness that knits us closer as individual members of the same gathering, the same society.

So, rather than one strong focus on a single theme or composer, we will perform for you a selection of beloved masterpieces by a variety of great composers. Some programs feature great symphonies - while other programs will feature great “symphonic works”. Regardless of the formal structure, what really matters is the heart and soul of the music - just as in our lives. And through diverse composers and their different yet profoundly human messages, I hope we can together grieve and heal, mourn and celebrate, and find inspiration and energy to move forwards.

We open the season with Mahler’s great Ninth symphony. I was absolutely convinced, without any doubt, that this miraculous symphony must be the opening sounds of this new season - a new world emerging from the Pandemic. In this symphony, Mahler uses perhaps his simplest symphonic structure and language - but what a profound message it holds, embracing all the complexities of life! In this symphony coexist his searing love for living and all the fragility of life - fleeting beauty, deeply etched sufferings, and overcoming challenges yet also calmly accepting…bidding goodbye to this world, yet anticipating a new horizon ahead, as if the world is ready to bloom anew once again. At the end of the work, there is such a profound feeling of acceptance, not at all heroic or confident, but simply so deeply heartfelt and sincere, even with all the longing, regret, gratitude and pain that comes from loving this precious life so much. This symphony is an intense living of life - and it has sustained me through the darkest months of the Pandemic by providing such a great emotional release. Great music is more than just an escape - it serves as a renewal, and this Ninth definitely is. It will be a release for all the layers of emotion and stress we have been storing up during the Pandemic. It will provide a collective healing for all our exhaustion. It will give us new inspiration to move forwards. I can not wait to join you on this epic journey.

It amazes me every time I think about our concerts - and even more so after this time of “lock down”, what a special event a live performance is. The concert hall may look deceivingly binary: the stage and audience. BUT in truth, the concert hall is an active exchange : music is only complete when the true exchange takes place, between the soul of the composer and your (the listener’s) own heart, the musicians serving as a living bridge, invigorated by both the genius of the composer and the energy of the audience. This is what I missed most during the Pandemic: being a part of that exciting exchange. So with a full heart, I welcome you back to TSO at the newly refurbished Olavshallen. I deeply hope that our performances will serve to provide you with rest, comfort, inspiration, refreshing, healing, and lots and lots of joy.

With my warmest greetings,

Han-Na Chang

Han-Na Chang sin bakgrunn og karriere

Han-Na Chang har vært sjefdirigent og kunstnerisk leder for Trondheim Symfoniorkester & Opera siden 2017, og før det første gjestedirigent fra 2013. Hun har så langt tatt orkesteret med på en musikalsk reise mot nye høyder, og de mottok stående ovasjoner da de i 2019 turnerte i Changs fødeland, Sør-Korea.

Chang og TSO har også hjerte for de unge som kommer etter, og sammen med NTNU, Trondheimsolistene, Trondheim Intl Chamber Music Competition (TICC) og Trondheim kulturskole er de en del av storsatsingen Talent Trondheim Kammermusikkskolen – et talentutviklingsprosjekt for unge musikere mellom 13 og 30 år. Chang har tidligere jobbet med det samme i Sør-Korea der hun grunnla og ledet Absolute Classic Festival fra 2009 til 2014, også dette et talentutviklingsprogram, et sommermusikkakademi med fokus på samspill, musikalsk utvikling og orkestertrening for dyktige musikere mellom 20 og 30 år.

Chang har for lengst blitt lagt merke til internasjonalt, for sin lidenskap og styrke, sitt skarpe intellekt, sin tekniske presisjon og dype innsikt i utøvelsen av sitt kunstneriske virke. Hun har jobbet med orkestre som Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Bamberger Symphoniker, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, symfoniorkestrene i blant annet Cincinnati, St Louis, Indianapolis, Seattle, Göteborg, Singapore, Tokyo og Toronto, Oslo-Filharmonien, Kungliga Filharmonikerna i Stockholm og Orchestra del Teatro di San Carlo di Napoli. Kommende debuter inkluderer blant annet Concertgebouworkest i Amsterdam, San Francisco Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra og Danish National Symphony Orchestra.

Hun startet sin musikalske karriere som cellist, og vant i 1994 Den internasjonale Rostropovitsj-konkurransen i en alder av 11 år. I årene som fulgte var hun solist med alle de største orkestrene, som Berliner Philharmoniker, New York og Los Angeles Philharmonic, Boston, Chicago, Bayerischen Rundfunks og London Symphony Orchestras. Hennes EMI-innspillinger er både prisbelønte og bestselgende verden over.