Welcome to the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra Heilbronn. On the following pages you can find information about the Chamber Orchestra which has been founded in Heilbronn 60 years ago, but whose music can be heard in concert halls around the world. The homepage provides information about the orchestra, its history and its principle conductor. You can also find all concerts and projects. Due to technical reasons, the English version is not as detailed and frequently updated as the German version. However, if you have any further questions, we will be pleased to assist you at anytime.
Württemberg Chamber Orchestra
Driven by the passion and inspiration of its musicians*, the name Württembergisches Kammerorchester Heilbronn (WKO) stands for an energetic music-making style and a distinct individuality of orchestral sound. These are also the guarantees for the international success story of the orchestra.
The WKO has a significant influence on the musical life of its home region. Its own subscription series in Heilbronn and Ulm as well as regular music theatre productions with the Heilbronn Theatre bear witness to this. In addition to innovative concert formats, the orchestra presents an imaginative music education programme for all ages and its own chamber music series designed by the musicians. Open-air concerts are among the special crowd pullers - the performances at the Heilbronn Federal Horticultural Show 2019 are still fresh in the memory.
The WKO is a perfect example of a chamber orchestra playing at the highest level. This includes the ability to create orchestral sound splendour and the chamber music virtues of interacting and mutual listening. The latter also enables performances in which the orchestra is led either by soloists or from the concert master’s music desk.
As the musical ambassador of Heilbronn, the WKO is a welcome guest at important interna-tional stages and festivals such as the Royal Albert Hall in London, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, the Cologne Philharmonic, the Tivoli Copenhagen, the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, the Rheingau Music Festival or the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. Regular touring activities round off the WKO's spectrum of activities. South Korea and a guest performance in Turkey are planned for the current season.
The WKO is the life's work of the conductor Jörg Faerber. He founded the ensemble in 1960 and led it to international renown. Jörg Faerber and his visionary work were followed in 2002 by the Armenian conductor Ruben Gazarian. An important feature of his tenure is the con-sistent expansion of the repertoire into the 21st century. Since the 2018/19 season, the young American conductor Case Scaglione has held the position of Chief Conductor of the WKO.
“Listening to the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra Heilbronn (…) is pure joy. (…) the compelling characteristics of this ensemble: agile music-making, combining esprit with clear, intelligible contours, and on top of that, a warm sound whose intensity should not be taken for granted in a chamber orchestra.”
SÜDDEUTSCHE ZEITUNG, April 2018
“The orchestra from Württemberg is among the leading ensembles in Europe, and its playing is truly virtuosic.” Frankfurter Neue Presse, March 2018 “Case Scaglione is relaxed, likeable, unpretentious, reflective, clear-cut – and obviously highly inspiring and demanding of his musicians. This made his debut in Ulm a veritable experience: Arnold Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht for string orchestra – latest romanticism, Secession, lots of Wagner echoes, ecstasy, art. And this Richard Dehmel poem about the “sinful love of a woman” as the inspiration for passionate sound-painting. Surely this performance of “Transfigured Night” should not be glorified: but the WKO, led by concertmaster Zohar Lerner with a most expressive violin sound, has rarely played so intensely, so colourfully in Ulm. The listeners could close their eyes for half an hour and delve into Vienna around 1900.”
”The young maestro on the podium, Case Scaglione, was flexible and empathetic with the Württembergisches Kammerorchester. The ensemble from Heilbronn, which sees itself as an “international sound manufactory” and travels a lot, was then able to show its own profile in Beethoven’s “Pastorale”. Chief Conductor Scaglione, Associate Conductor of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, unites American looseness with a highly sensitive musicality. Although he bought the intimacy of his interpretation of Beethoven with extreme pianissimi and much ritardandi, he brought the sound culture of the orchestra to best advantage. “Case Scaglione conducts his WKOmusicians mostly by heart, with small, smooth but clear gestures, full of energy and with impulse”
HEILBRONNER STIMME, SEPTEMBER 2018