Getting to know an orchestra well, according to the conductor Erina Yashima, “is a bit like taking driving lessons in order to get a driving licence. First, you need to have practiced driving for a certain number of hours in traffic, on dirt roads and at night to be admitted to the exam. After that, if you get a driving licence, the car doesn’t drive itself, because behind the wheel you always have to pay close attention to what you’re doing“. Yashima is a skilled conductor, as evidenced by the dazzling career journey that in just a handful of years took her from being a student and assistant to a legendary baton to taking upon herself the responsibility of great orchestras, such as her appointment as first conductor of the Berlin Komische Oper, which came in September 2022. Of Japanese origin with a German passport, she studied in Germany and in Vienna. A turning point was 2015, when she participated in the Verdi Opera Academy held in Ravenna by Riccardo Muti, whose assistant she became then in Chicago. In the programme together with the ORT, she collaborates with Martin Owen, first-chair horn in the BBC Symphony orchestra who tries his hand at Richard Strauss’ Horn Concerto No. 2, a score that nostalgically looks back on the past. Then we will be listening to Antonín Dvořák’s New World Symphony.