In July 1960 Dmitri Shostakovich composed his famous String Quartet No. 8 in Gohrisch southeast of Dresden – the only work by him written outside the Soviet Union. To commemorate the work’s genesis, in 2010 the International Shostakovich Days in Gohrisch was founded – since then the festival has attracted concert-goers from around the world to the spa resort near the Elbe River. In the first year the festival already received high praise from the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung: “At an authentic setting, unique festival programming was created with a balance of works that would normally be expected at established festivals such as in Salzburg or Bayreuth: a judicious and deftly concentrated concept performed by renowned artists, and refined by the charm and spirit of the location.” One of the first guest artists in Gohrisch was conductor Michail Jurowski, who as a child used to play piano pieces for four hands with the composer. Concert highlights of his performances with the Staatskapelle Dresden, which played an important role in starting the festival, have now been issued as live recordings on this first CD.
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