© Markus C. Hurek

Enoch zu Guttenberg


Enoch zu Guttenberg has never been one to make things easy for himself. Enoch zu Guttenberg has always been acting with conviction and has often enough swum against instead of with the tide. As one of the most outstanding conductors of our time he has been exploring music in a way that has deeply touched his audience and critics and at the same time established his international reputation.

As symphonist and interpreter of great sacral works, his performances have set high standards in his own career as well as on major international concert stages. In addition to his engagements as guest conductor (e.g. as principal guest conductor with the MDR Leipzig or the NDR symphonic orchestra Hamburg, the Saarbruecken Radio Symphony, the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, the Nouvelle Orchestre Philharmonique Paris and many other national and international orchestras),he particularly has been forging a close relationship with two ensembles realizing Guttenberg's artistic idea and music philosophical approaches, as he puts it, 'with 100 percent dedication together with me': The KlangVerwaltung Orchestra whose artistic director he was appointed in 1997 and the Chorgemeinschaft Neubeuern he took over in 1967.

For Enoch zu Guttenberg and his ensembles the symbiosis of a profound knowledge about the particular historic performance practice, the absolute, obligatory focus on content, and the emotionality growing from it have been the three central pillars of their interpretation. This applied to all significant works from the Baroque, the Viennese Classicism, the Romanticism, the late romantic period, and to compositions from the 20th century.

Guttenberg, together with these two ensembles, has not only celebrated great successes at all important festivals, but also in the Golden Hall of Vienna's Musikverein, in Concertgebouw Amsterdam, in Beijing as well as at St Martin in the Fields in London. 2016 was marked by major concert tours through Asia, Canada and the USA with a veritable tour de force through all the great concert halls, culminating with a stunning performance in Carnegie Hall in New York.

The composer's credo reads as follows: 'You have to be able to existentially account for everything you do.' The answers to unsolved questions of the world Guttenberg searches for and finds in music are sometimes radical, have been polarizing experts more than once, and are admired by enthusiastic supporters throughout the world.

In 2000, Enoch zu Guttenberg was appointed artistic director of the International Herrenchiemsee Festival. Together with dramaturge Klaus J. Schönmetzler Guttenberg has created a unique concept which not only benefits from his personality and beliefs but also accounts for the location's exceptional history.

Although music has always been the focus of his dedication and creativity, Guttenberg has at all times been receptive to the world surrounding him. Whether as insistent admonisher and visionary in environmental issues or as successful promoter of a closer cultural cooperation between the East and the West - due to his background, the combination of political and artistic commitment has always been an obligation for Enoch zu Guttenberg.

Since 1997 Enoch zu Guttenberg was closely connected to Farao classics. In this constellation all of his recordings and productions have been developed and worked jointly.

Enoch zu Guttenberg has received many awards for his work over the years, amongst them the Deutsche Kulturpreis and the Cross (First Class) of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. In 2017, he and Chorgemeinschaft Neubeuern received the Rheingau Musik Preis to celebrate their 50th anniversary. For his recording of Anton Bruckner's Symphony No. 4 'Romantic' in E-flat major (Farao classics S 108 051) he received the coveted ECHO Klassik Award 2008 in the category 'symphonic recording of the year'. He gave back this price in 2019 - protesting against a song with antisemitic content, which was awarded with an ECHO.

On June 15th, 2018 Enoch zu Guttenberg has died unexpectedly.