Gregory Ahss

Dates | 20th – 25th July 2012 | maximum 8 participants

The most important position in the orchestra is truly not only a matter of hierarchy but also a very big responsibility for one musician – the violinist, the leader and often assistant to the conductor. We offer a unique master class that will support the skills, encourage the professional acting and re-acting and furthermore enlighten the obligations and duties of a concertmaster.

If you only think of these essentials: the physical endurance of a marathon runner, the emotional stamina to handle applause in one moment and critical darts in the next, possession of the right feeling and knowledge to decide what is important, when to move forward, how to follow the conductor and serve as a trust-worthy leader of the orchestra. Furthermore the concertmaster often has to be able to play as an orchestra musician and in the next moment as a soloist.  The position of being a leader and momentary soloist within the greatest instrument – the orchestra, is the most exciting part of the job and at the same time one of the most demanding tasks.

Join the professor of the master class for concertmasters, leader of Mahler Chamber Orchestra and also one of the concertmasters of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, Gregory Ahss and learn out about the perspectives of the important role of the concertmasters and their relationship to the orchestra.

The master class is for professional violinists or professional music students, who have the feeling or already the experience, that they can lead an orchestra as the First violin.



As a soloist, violinist Gregory Ahss, has performed under Claudio Abbado and Yannick Nézet-Séguin with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Mozart Bologna and Camerata Salzburg. He has also led these ensembles on various occasions.
As a guest concertmaster, Gregory has among others appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal.
He is concertmaster of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and also serves as one of the concertmasters of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra.

The Concertmaster master class will be held in two time frames
1st and 2nd day
Under the mentorship of the exceptional Gregory Ahss the candidates will learn about the basic principles of a concertmaster’s work and work on concertmaster’s orchestra parts by their own choice. The candidates can bring their own musical literature for this part of the master class.

3rd to 6th day
In the second part of the master class lectures will be joined with the conducting master class and with the symphonic orchestra of the Orchestra academy 2012.
Together with the conductors, each concertmaster will experience the real work of a concertmaster in an orchestra, under the mentorship of the professor. On the last day of the master class there will be a general rehearsal and a concert.

Programme of the practical part of the master class
J. Brahms: The Variations on a Theme by Joseph Haydn Op. 56a
J. Haydn: The Symphony No. 102 in B flat major, Hob I/102
P. I. Tchaikovsky: The Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36
I. Stravinsky: Jeux de Cartes
N. Rota: Trombone concerto
A. Dvořák: The Symphony No. 8 in G major, Op. 88, B. 163

The music for this part will be provided for the candidates by the organiser, for the individual part they have to bring their own music though.


Profile of Participants

Students, professionals

Course language: English, German


Enrolment fee: 640 €

Application deadline 25th May 2012

Apply now!