Q & A with Valentin Priebus

Q & A with Valentin Priebus
By Bethany Tillerson (photo credit: © North German Radio Symphony Orchestra)

On October 10, Monday Night At The Symphony featured the North German Radio Symphony Orchestra. I spoke with the orchestra’s cellist, Valentin Priebus, who lives in the orchestra’s home city of Hamburg, Germany. He has been a member since 2013, and is open about his love for both his city and his workplace—the impressive halls of the Elbphilharmonie are where the musicians of the North German Radio Symphony Orchestra work, practice, and, in some cases, live; in addition to concert halls, the Elbphilharmonie includes a set of apartments, a hotel, restaurants, and a 269-foot escalator.

I appreciated the opportunity to get a glimpse into the mind of a musician belonging to such a remarkable orchestra.

Q: What is your favorite piece of music to play?
Priebus: One of my favorite pieces to play is Sergei Prokofiev’s Symphony no. 5. I first played it as a teenager and become more fascinated by it each time I play it.

Q: What is your favorite thing about being part of the North German Radio Symphony?
Priebus: I really enjoy playing with inspiring world-class musicians and wonderful colleagues in one of the world’s most beautiful concert halls, the Elbphilharmonie.

Q: If you could spend one day with any composer who would it be?
That would be György Ligeti – what an incredible mind and entertaining personality!

Monday Night At The Symphony is one of our most-loved programs, where we feature music from one orchestra at 8:00 p.m. every Monday. You can enjoy it on The Classical Station’s app, on 87.9 FM, or streaming it on