How the final list for IIM approval was prepared

Registration result flute & bassoon 2018

A battle between three giants for the winning laurel - the final in the bassoon category

(gd) - The 53rd International Instrumental Competition is now entering the home straight with the final in the bassoon category. Three young bassoonists have reached the longed-for final round. There they have to prove all their skills once again, because no less work than that Concerto in B flat major, KV 191 for bassoon and orchestra (Allegro - Andante ma Adagio - Rondo: tempo di menuetto) by W.A. Mozart (1756-1791) is on the program. The soloists were accompanied by the Vogtland Philharmonic Greiz / Reichenbach under the proven, sensitive guidance of their conductor David Marlow.

The concert was written in 1774 in Salzburg on behalf of Baron Thaddeus von Dürnitz, who played bassoon. In this concert Mozart tried above all to fully exploit the playing possibilities of the instrument, which is seldom used for solo tasks. Hence the wide interval space that extends from high sound regions (streaked octave) down to the depths of the contra-octave, which is used melodically. In addition, Mozart was obviously also interested in showing that the bassoon, to which one would like to assign only the expression of the comical, the bucolic, can also blow cantabile and create melodic beauty. So this work is predestined for the finals of an instrumental competition!

As the first finalist was Theo Plath (D), born in 1994, it's turn. He is the first prize winner of numerous international competitions and performs as a soloist with major orchestras in Germany and abroad. As a sought-after chamber musician, he is a regular guest at renowned festivals such as the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Festival, the Davos Festival and the “Tensions” in Heimbach, where he plays with musicians such as Lars Vogt, Christian Tetzlaff, Antje Weithaas, Vilde Frang and Maximilian Hornung; he is also a member of the Monet wind quintet.

Theo Plath is currently studying for a master's degree with Prof. Dag Jensen at the HMT Munich. He is regularly involved in the “Rhapsody in School” initiative and conveys his enthusiasm for classical music to schoolchildren all over Germany. In 2018 Theo Plath is principal bassoonist of the Deutsche Radiophilharmonie Saarbrücken-Kaiserslautern. Characteristic of his performance at the concert were the restrained tone, his somewhat introverted playing and his sensitive cadences. In his interpretation he demonstrated a great musical understanding of Mozart's music.

The second in the league was David Spranger (D). The artist, born in 1988, received his first bassoon lessons at the age of 13 from Manfred Beyer (Staatskapelle Weimar) at the Belvedere Music School in Weimar. Later he was a young student with Prof. Frank Forst at the University of Music. Active participation in master classes with Klaus Thunemann, Eckart Hübner, Dag Jensen and Sergio Azzolini, among others, encouraged his musical education from an early age. He has already appeared as a soloist with the Jena Philharmonic and the Staatskapelle Weimar. From 2008 he studied at the "Franz Liszt" University of Music in Weimar with Prof. Frank Forst and during this time he received a scholarship from the "Hans and Eugenia Jütting" Foundation Stendal and the "Oscar and Vera Ritter" Foundation. He is also the winner of several international competitions.

David Spranger was a long-time member of the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and was assistant bassoonist in the Beethoven Orchester Bonn for two seasons before he became principal bassoonist in the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra in the 2015/16 season. In addition to various chamber music activities, David Spranger also teaches at the Rotterdam Philharmonic Codarts Academy.

David Spranger used all the sound possibilities of the instrument to do justice to this great composition by Mozart. His lecture was more introverted, the tone was round and yet very differentiated. With his interpretation, with his wonderful dynamic design, he spanned an arc of expression that showed his musical maturity. A confident, convincing performance!

Andrea Cellacchi, the third in the final elimination, born in Rome in 1997, comes from a family of musicians. He started playing the bassoon at the age of 10. At the age of 16 he graduated from the Conservatory of Latina "Ottorino Respighi" with the highest distinction.

At the age of 18 he achieved international renown after winning first prize at the tenth “Aeolus” competition in Düsseldorf and, as the first Italian ever, first prize at the “Muri” competition in Switzerland. He also took part in master classes with Deg Jensen, Matthias Ràcz, Klaus Thunemann, Carlo Colombo, Stefano Canuti and others. He is currently attending the Music Performance Masters course at the Zurich University of the Arts in Matthias Ràcz's class.

At the age of 19 he became the first bassoonist in the Konzerthausorchester Berlin. He has appeared as a soloist with the Munich Symphony Orchestra, the Izmir State Symphony Orchestra, the Meininger Hofkapelle, the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra, the Argovia Philharmonic and the Bad Reichenhaller Philharmonic. In 2016 he was awarded the medal of the Italian Chamber of Deputies in recognition of his talent.

Andrea also showed a very differentiated design of the three movements. His interpretation of the Mozart composition differed from the previous ones in that it had a more powerful tone. Andrea corresponded wonderfully with the orchestra and was particularly convincing in the 3rd movement with a soulful, but also spirited looseness.

Everyone was now looking forward to the decision of the international jury, which was announced by Prof. Peter Damm after about 30 minutes - which shows that the jury members quickly came to an agreement:

  • 1. Prize winner …………………………………………………… .. David Spranger (Germany)
  • 2nd Prize Winner …………………………………………………… .. Andrea Cellacchi (Italy)
  • 3rd Prize Winner …………………………………………………… .. Theo Plath (Germany)

Congratulations to all the winners and all the best, health and many successes in their musical careers!

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