60 Years »Future Stars on a Berlin Stage«

Young virtuosos, ambitious programmes, an extensive reach – building on this recipe for success, ‘Debut on Deutschlandfunk Kultur’ is one of the most exciting concert series rich in tradition on public radio in Germany. The 60th season will be celebrated in the 2019-20 season with a major anniversary concert.

The concert series was founded in 1959 by the radio station Rundfunk im amerikanischen Sektor (Radio in the American Sector – RIAS), and in its first decades bore the title ‘RIAS stellt vor’ (RIAS presents), later ‘Debut on Deutschlandradio Kultur’; since 2017 the series has been called ‘Debut on Deutschlandfunk Kultur’. Invented by radio producers for radio listeners, the concerts continue to be broadcast across Germany, primarily live. Since the fall of 1988, chamber music concerts are also included in the tried and tested profile.

Das erste konzert der reihe ›rias stellt vor‹ am 3.11.1959 mit dem pianisten anton kuerti und dirigenten christoph stepp. bild: deutschlandfunk kultur
The first concert of the ›RIAS stellt vor‹ series on Nov 3, 1959 with pianist Anton Kuerti and conductor Christoph Stepp. Photo: Deutschlandfunk Kultur

Curiosity is Concept

But justifiably, nothing has changed about the concept behind the orchestra concerts: three young musicians, who have not only proven themselves as virtuosos in international competitions but have also found their “own voices” early on, are given an opportunity to debut in front of a large audience in the Philharmonie together with the DSO. The dramaturgical structure of two soloists and one conductor has also proven its worth. What is unusual is that the young artists themselves can freely determine which works they will present. Unfamiliar works are always most welcome; after all, the series is intended to make listeners curious – about the young musicians, but also about pieces beyond the standard repertoire.

Steppingstone for Outstanding Talent

The list of debut artists who were invited to Berlin before they became world-famous is long. Jacqueline Du Pré and Daniel Barenboim (both in 1963), Jessye Norman (1969) and Simon Rattle (1977) were among them, as well as Yevgeny Kissin (1987), Cecilia Bartoli (1988) and former DSO Music Director Tugan Sokhiev (2003). Numerous artists for whom their ‘debut’ concert marked the beginning of many years of collaboration with the orchestra are represented will also perform at the DSO concerts in the current season: Martin Helmchen, Leonidas Kavakos, Sakari Oramo, Santtu-Matias Rouvali, Antoine Tamestit and Jean-Yves Thibaudet.

Numerous well-known former debutants, including Daniel Müller-Schott, Arabella Steinbacher, Anna Vinnitskaya and Tabea Zimmermann, will perform under Lawrence Foster and Andrew Litton at the great Anniversary Concert on 28 October. And on 10 June you can once again get to know exciting young artists: conductor Ruth Reinhardt, violinist Diana Adamyan and trumpeter Selina Ott.

More about the series at DLF Kultur

2019 | 2020 Debüt im DLF Kultur