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Thomas Sanderling was born in Leningrad on October 2, 1942. His father, celebrated conductor Kurt Sanderling, was forced to flee Germany in 1936. Young Thomas studied first at the Leningrad Conservatory, then at the Hochschule fur Musik in East Berlin. His first important post came at the age of 24, when he was appointed director of the Halle Opera. By his mid-twenties he was conducting in all East Germany’s principal orchestras and opera houses, including the Dresden Staatskapelle and the Leipzig Gewandhaus, and won the Berlin Critics’ Prize for his performances at the Komische Oper Berlin.

In the 1970s he developed a friendship with the declining Shostakovich, who presented Sanderling with scores to his Thirteenth and Fourteenth symphonies. Sanderling later led the German premieres of those controversial works. Sanderling’s premiere recording of Shostakovich’s Michaelangelo Suite directly led to his becoming assistant to both Herbert von Karajan and Leonard Bernstein.

Despite his close association with the music of Dmitry Shostakovich, his repertory is broad, encompassing Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Wagner, and Dvorak, as well as moderns like Karl Weigl and Americans Menotti, Barber, and Tobias Picker. He has conducted a mixture of orchestras worldwide, generally to critical acclaim, and made a number of successful recordings. He has also developed an equally respected reputation in opera, particularly for performances in the most important operatic centers in Germany, Austria, and Scandinavia.

Role: Conductor 
Album Title
Catalogue No  Work Category 
CONUS, J.: Violin Concerto / WEINBERG, M.: Violin Concertino / ARENSKY, A.S.: Violin Concerto (Russian Violin Concertos) (Ostrovsky, T. Sanderling) Naxos
KLETZKI, P.: Piano Concerto / 3 Preludes / 3 Unpublished Piano Pieces / Fantasie (Banowetz, Russian Philharmonic, T. Sanderling) Naxos
Opera Arias (Tenor): Dermota, Anton - MOZART, W.A / WAGNER, R. / BEETHOVEN, L. van / STRAUSS, R. / TCHAIKOVSKY, P.I. / SHOSTAKOVICH, D. / PFITZNER, H. Orfeo
SHOSTAKOVICH, D.: 6 Romances, Op. 62a / Annie Laurie / Suite on Verses of Michelangelo, Op. 145a (Finley, Helsinki Philharmonic, T. Sanderling) Ondine
SIBELIUS, J.: Violin Concerto / STRAVINSKY, I.: Violin Concerto (Zhi-Jong Wang, Philharmonia Orchestra, T. Sanderling) Accentus Music
TANEYEV, S.I.: Oresteya: Overture and Entr'acte / Overture in D Minor / Overture on a Russian theme (Novosibirsk Academic Symphony, T. Sanderling) Naxos
Opera, Orchestral, Choral - Secular, Orchestral
TANEYEV, S.I.: Suite de Concert / Ioann Damaskin (John of Damascus) (Kaler, Gnesin Academy Chorus, Russian Philharmonic, T. Sanderling) Naxos
Concerto, Choral - Sacred
TANEYEV, S.I.: Symphonies Nos. 1 and 3 (Novosibirsk Academic Symphony, T. Sanderling) Naxos
TANEYEV, S.I.: Symphonies Nos. 2 and 4 (Novosibirsk Academic Symphony, T. Sanderling) Naxos
USTVOLSKAYA, G.I. / SILVESTROV, V. / KANCHELI, G.: Piano and Orchestra Works (E. Blumina, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, T. Sanderling) Grand Piano
Concerto, Orchestral, Concerto

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