This special project with Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, conducted by Daniel Harding, which was due to take place in May 2020, was by far the largest and most demanding tour project of the GUSTAV MAHLER JUGENDORCHESTER in recent years.

Upon invitation by the Concertgebouw Amsterdam the GMJO was to perform Mahler: Symphony No. 8 twice at the 2020 Mahler Festival, alongside the leading orchestras of the world: Concertgebouworkest, Berliner Philharmoniker, Wiener Philharmoniker, New York Philharmonic, Budapesti Fesztiválzenekar. It was planning to give 5 more concerts at Grafenegg, at the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, at the Kölner Philharmonie, and at the Philharmonie Luxembourg.

Sadly, this project does not take place now, as so many other concerts, opera performances, festivals, or cultural events of any genre, size, or budget worldwide that had to be cancelled.

The more than 130 musicians of the GUSTAV MAHLER JUGENDORCHESTER had been selected and invited for these projects after the 2019 auditions – from more than 2500 applicants – , and they have been preparing and practising for these projects for a long time. We should like to publish the names of the musicians which were selected and invited for this project as members of the GUSTAV MAHLER JUGENDORCHESTER 2020. For this reason, we are publishing – digitally and in a new design – this tour programme brochure.

In this critical situation, we have encountered great support from our public supporters, the Bundesministerium für Kunst, Kultur, öffentlichen Dienst und Sport and the Bundesministerium für europäische und internationale Angelegenheiten of the Federal Republic of Austria, the Cultural Department of the Stadt Wien, and from our long-term main sponsors, Erste Group and Vienna Insurance Group, and from our numerous institutional and private friends, donors, and cooperation partners.

The GUSTAV MAHLER JUGENDORCHESTER was founded by Claudio Abbado in a time when political borders and frontiers in Europe seemed insurmountable. Active for more than 30 years now, the GMJO became a symbol of musical excellence, of overcoming borders, and of hope. This is more actual than ever, as we are currently facing the drawing up of new frontiers and limitations, and we have to be patiently waiting, torn between hope and uncertainty, until we may become active again.

In these times, we have to ask for your active support, so that we shall be able to continue Claudio Abbado’s most important legacy and to bring it on tour again soon. Europe’s best young musicians simply deserve this.