Berlin based Composer/Conductor Christian Jost studied composition, analysis and conducting in Cologne with Bojidar Dimov from 1983 to 1988 and with David Sheinfeld at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music from 1988 to 1989. Christian received scholarships from the foundation Kulturfond des Deutschen Volkes and the artistic and cultural foundation of the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia. Jost received the Ernst von Siemens Foundation Encouragement Prize in 2003. His opera Hamlet has been elected ‘World Premiere of the Year 2009’ by an international jury of the magazine ‘Opernwelt’.
Christian Jost also frequently appears as conductor, e.g. with the Bremen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Nederlands Philharmonic Orchestra, the Hamburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra Taiwan, the Essen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Komische Oper Berlin, the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie, the Deutsches Kammerorchester Berlin, and the Orchestra of the Oper Graz. He received commissions a.o. by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, the Lucerne Festival, the Konzerthaus Orchester Berlin, the Vlaamse Opera Antwerpen, the Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin, the Oper Graz, the Rundfunkchor Berlin, the Zurich Opera, the Taiwan Festival of Arts. Christian lives as a freelance composer and conductor in Berlin where he also leads and is the evening host of the famous concert series “2xhoeren” at the Konzerthaus Berlin.
The composer received invitations to become “Composer in Residence” from the Orchestra of the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn (1999/2000, The End of the Game for orchestra), the Staatskapelle Weimar (2003/04, CocoonSymphonie for orchestra) and in the season 2004/05 from both the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf (Vipern) and the Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz (first performance of Requiem-Trilogie), as well as the Komische Oper Berlin and Theater Dortmund (2008/09 and 2010/11, Hamlet), the National Symphony Orchestra Taiwan and the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra (2012/13, Taipei Horizon), and the Vienna Music Festival in Grafenegg (2016, An die Hoffnung for Tenor and orchestra).
Two of Jost’s operas received their first performance in 2005: the first full-length opera Vipern (“A murderous desire in four acts”) at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf in January and the first staged performance of the one-act work Death Knocks (2001) based on the satire of the same name by Woody Allen in the theatre in Erfurt in May. Jost’s large-scale “astronaut odyssey” Phoenix ressurexit had already received its first performance in 2001 at the festival Mittelrhein Musik Momente. At the beginning of 2006, Jost produced a completely original contribution to the genre music theatre with his choral opera Angst (“5 gateways of a journey into the interior of angst”) for chorus, choral soloists, instrumental ensemble and film projections. The plot and a reflection on the dramatic events of a mountaineering accident are exclusively communicated by the chorus. Following the premiere of the opera The Arabian Night (2007) at the theatre in Essen, Jost composed the musical drama Hamlet based on William Shakespeare for the Komische Oper Berlin during the season 2008/2009. Hamlet’s painful search for knowledge and truth is transformed in the division of the principal role between the mezzo soprano and choral voices into the general existential underlying quest of human beings. Komische Oper commissioned a second opera in 2011, Mikropolis, an opera for children. In 2012, two stage works have been premiered: Rumor at the Vlaamse Opera Antwerpen/Gent, based on the famous novel “Un dulce olor a muerte” (“The Sweet Scent of Death”) by Guillermo Arriaga, and the ballet DnA – six images of love at Oper Graz. In 2013 the Taiwan Festival of Arts commissioned Jost to composer an Opera based on a short story by chinese legendary novelist Zhang Ai-ling. Heart Sutra was premiered the same year at the Taiwan Festival at the national Symphony Concert hall under the musical direction oft he Composer. The Rundfunkchor Berlin and world famous Drummers of U-theatre Taiwan, commissioned Jost to create another original contribution to the genre music-dance-theatre. In April 2014 under Jost’s musical direction, LOVER – for mixed chorus and percussion held his stunning world premiere in Berlin. LOVER will have it’s Asian premiere in February 2016 in Taipei followed by performences at the Hong Kong Festival of Arts, again the Berlin Radio Choir and U-Theatre appear under Jost’s baton. The Trilogy of full evening “music theatre works” based on chinese topic’s was completed with the world premiere of RED LANTERN – Opera based on Su Tong’s Novel “Wives and Concubines” and the movie “Raise the Red Lantern” by Zhang Yimou at the Zurich Opera in March 2015.
The solo concerto is a core genre in Jost’s oeuvre. A characteristic of his works is an orchestrally conceived atmospheric tonal density. Jost’s compositional impulse primarily consists of the wish to acquaint the listener with the unknown, individualism and psychological borderline experiences in a fascinating guise. His intentions can frequently be divined by the titles of his works: TiefenRausch for violin and orchestra (1997), Cosmodromion for percussion and orchestra (2002) and Heart of Darkness (“Odyssee” for clarinet and orchestra, 2007, commissioned by the Berlin Philharmonic. The tragic death of the jazz trumpeter Chet Baker is the subject of his concerto for trumpet and orchestra Pietà (“in memoriam Chet Baker”, 2004). This work together with the compositions DiesIrae for trombone and orchestra (2002) and LuxAeterna for alto saxophone and orchestra (2003) form the Requiem-Trilogie – a cycle which was performed complete for the first time during the season 2004/05. In 2007, the RSO Stuttgart presenting the world premiere of Konzert für Orchester; in 2009, the Konzerthausorchester Berlin premiered Jost’s work CodeNine. This orchestral work is based on the slow movements of 9th symphonies by Beethoven, Bruckner and Mahler and Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony. Also the Konzerthausorchester Berlin commissioned in 2015 Christian Jost’s BerlinSymphonie a 30 minutes urban symphonic landscape that was premiered at the Konzerthaus Berlin March 2015.