Riesa: Planned concert attraction in Sachsenarena

Concert event planned in Sachsenarena

Until now, the Freyler industrial hall was the venue for the season finale of the Elbląg Philharmonic. Now it is the turn of the next large hall.

Orchestral music in Sachsenaren? It hardly ever happens otherwise. Soon 60 musicians will perform there at the same time.
© Eric Weser

huge. Do you play in a 1000 square meter room with an orchestra? This is a risk that Riesa already has experience with. Freyler’s concert in the industrial hall of the same name enjoys a non-regional reputation as the climax of the Elbląg Philharmonic season. As the hall is no longer available after the sale, the event moves to Sachsenarena. Interview with Carola Gotthardt, Managing Director of the Elbland Philharmonic and John Jaeschke, head of the city’s operator of the FVG arenas.

Mrs. Gotthardt, how are artists doing after a two-year pandemic? Is everything back to normal?

Gotthard: At the moment, the orchestra’s musicians are under a lot of stress! The organizers want to make up for everything that had to be canceled. Then the Felsenbühne Rathen reopened, where we were allowed to play with a huge cast: 60 musicians offered excerpts from all the songs we are performing this season. Then came the Pentecost concerts. But all the musicians are doing well. Thank goodness there have been very few cases of corona discharge here. We’re enjoying the outdoor season, ticket sales are going well.

How are freelancers doing in the industry?

Gotthard: Some musicians have reoriented themselves. For example, a woman with a very beautiful voice started out as a funeral speaker. Many were employed in music schools, others worked temporarily as school teachers. First of all, all technicians at the event suffered. Fortunately, everyone we deal with is still here.

Mr. Jaeschke, as the arena operator and star, FVG has dealt with many postponed events. Is the issue of card returns or exchanges still lingering?

Jaeschke: There is still some backlog. Some still have tickets for two, three, four postponed home events. Of course you will notice this when you look at the sale. But at the same time you notice: People want to go out after two years – and experience something with other people! For example, at the spring reboot party, the Stadthalle Stern was bursting at the seams.

What about your skilled workers?

Jaeschke: Event technicians, security, catering: this is a difficult topic for all service providers. Many people have moved into industries that offer more family-friendly working hours.

Carola Gotthardt from the Elbland Philharmonic and John Jaeschke from FVG Riesa present the poster for the great orchestral concert in Sachsenarena.

Carola Gotthardt from the Elbland Philharmonic and John Jaeschke from FVG Riesa present the poster for the great orchestral concert in Sachsenarena.
© Sebastian Schultz

You will need all of these experts at the upcoming concert in Sachsenarena. Why does the orchestra play from all places there?

Gotthard: After the first wave of Corona in summer 2020, we organized a reappearance concert there. With large distances between the musicians, the orchestra was set to a width of 40 meters. The conditions there were really good and the concert was very popular.

Jaeschke: You could feel the enthusiasm of the local people. A look from above at the orchestra from the visitor’s gallery is something completely different than, for example, concerts at Stern.

Gotthard: Many of my friends from Meissen, who don’t usually come to Riesa, also attended the concert – and were impressed.

The title of the concert is “The Rat Pack”. This may raise some questions …

Gotthard: He returns to the legendary stage performances of Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davos jr. and Dean Martin performed with a big band in Las Vegas in the 60’s. The name came about after a troupe of actors and artists played with Humphrey Bogart for four days. We want to transfer this charm of the 1960s to the Sachsenarena stage with a great show. It is different with us than with classical music concerts as part of “light music”, but it is a very difficult program.


Gotthard: Playing great pieces by three artists with a large orchestra is very challenging! Musicians do more rehearsals for this than for a concert at the Philharmonic. And that’s for one performance! Over 60 musicians are involved. The drummer himself has about 30 instruments in front of him – from a triangle to a marimba.

What events are still ahead of us this year?

Gotthard: After the orchestral break, the Elbland Philharmonic begins with open-air concerts – there is film music, Tom Pauls is coming, a rock scene is to be recorded in Rathen. Here in the region there will be a free concert with the Zwingertrio in Grossenhain on June 26 at 16:00 at the Festwiese. A much attended summer stage performance has just taken place in Riesa. In Meissen, we will perform again at Crassoberg, as well as at the opening and closing of the Castle Festival.

Jaeschke: The next summer stage is scheduled for July 7 in Riesa. On September 16 we expect Santiano to be in Sachsenarena, a day later We Salute You Show, on September 18 Radio Doria with Jan Josef Liefers. Comedian Sascha Grammel will perform in the arena on September 23. And from July 1 to July 3, there is of course a city festival in Ries – at the end of which it is a good idea to visit “The Rat Pack” on July 3 at 17:00 in Sachsenarena!

  • Tickets for The Rat Pack are available for 19 euros from Riesa Information, on sachsenarena.de and on 03525 529422.

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