Michael Lessky & members of the Vienna Young Philharmonic present ‘The Magic Harp’ - Orchestral Suite

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Michael Lessky & members of the Vienna Young Philharmonic present ‘The Magic Harp’ - Orchestral Suite

  • Tue 26 Apr 2022
  • 7:00PM

We are delighted to welcome Austrian conductor and musical director Michael Lessky together with members of the Vienna Young Philharmonic at the ACF London, presenting an Orchestral Suite of music from 'The Magic Harp' by Franz Schubert, arranged by musicologist and Schubert expert Brian Newbould.

Join us for a unique concert featuring selected pieces from this legendary Schubert Opera, including the popular overture 'Rosamunde', followed by a discussion with Michael Lessky and Brian Newbould, exploring recent discoveries in Schubert’s works and his reception in the UK.


Franz Schubert’s opera 'The Magic Harp' was premiered in 1820 at the ‘Theater an der Wien’, Vienna, but was withdrawn after only eight performances due to in part devastating response from audience and critics. The apparently poor libretto and detailed records of the staging were lost, only the music survived, with the overture later serving as the overture to ‘Rosamunde’ and becoming extremely popular.

The musicologist and Schubert specialist Brian Newbould transformed the existing melodramas into an Orchestral Suite, which was premiered in 2019 by the Vienna Young Philharmonic (Junge Philharmonie Wien) under conductor Michael Lessky.

The Suite is now released on CD for the very first time by the Austrian label GRAMOLA and the recording shows that the music of the then 23-year-old Schubert is already quite progressive and forward-looking, and full of gripping drama in support of the action of the libretto, which could be reconstructed in excerpts.


The Vienna Young Philharmonic Orchestra is Austria’s elite-orchestra of young talents, musically fashioned in the Viennese traditon. Every year they elaborate ten projects and play about 25 concerts. Highlights of a successful story: in 1997 and 2007 founding concert and jubilee at Vienna Musikverein, 2001 opening concert of International Schönberg-Festival at Vienna Konzerthaus, recitals with Agnes Baltsa, Elina Garanca, Josè Carreras, Dave Brubeck, international tours to China, Mozarteum Brasiliero (2015), in Italy Ravello Festival (2015), Südtiroler Festspiele (2019) and Salzburg Festival in 2021.

Brian Newbould is a British author and musicologist known particularly for his writings on Schubert and realisations of the composer’s unfinished works, which are widely performed and recorded.

Michael Lessky is a Viennese born conductor and musical director with special focus on Schubert, Mahler and Berg. He presents their music all over the world.

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Brian Newbould (left) & Michael Lessky (right)


Please note: Tickets are limited and need to be booked on our website in advance.

We would like to inform you that all guests must show proof of either a negative Covid-19 lateral flow test (not older than 24 hours), full vaccination status or recent recovery from Covid-19. We ask you also to follow social distancing, wear a mask and sanitise your hands. Please do not visit the ACF if you have Covid symptoms.

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© Junge Philharmonie Wien

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Austrian Cultural Forum London
28 Rutland Gate
London SW7 1PQ