MusicAeterna conductor Teodor Currentzis to launch touring international orchestra

Posted on: August 2, 2022

“The conductor Teodor Currentzis, who has faced scrutiny since the start of the war in Ukraine because of his ties to a state-owned bank in Russia, announced on Monday that he would form a new international ensemble with the support of donors outside Russia,” writes Javier C. Hernández in Monday’s (8/1) New York Times. “The ensemble, to be called Utopia, will bring together 112 musicians from 28 countries, many of them soloists and principal players in renowned orchestras, for a European tour that is to begin this fall and go through 2023, according to a statement. The group will rely on ticket sales as well as donations from European benefactors…. The statement did not address Currentzis’s future with his longtime ensemble, MusicAeterna, which has drawn fire for its reliance on VTB Bank, a state-owned Russian institution that has been sanctioned by the United States and other countries but remains the ensemble’s main sponsor. Representatives for Currentzis and MusicAeterna did not respond to requests for comment on Monday. The statement did not offer details about Utopia’s European benefactors…. The new group will perform at the [Vienna Konzerthaus] concert hall in October, during a tour that includes stops in Luxembourg and Germany.”