DETROIT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA ANNOUNCES 2017-2018 SEASON

  • DSO celebrates Leonard Slatkin’s 10th anniversary as Music Director with wide-ranging programs, including:
  • Eight world premieres, seven of which will be conducted by Slatkin
  • A winter French Festival, with music by Ravel, Saint-Saëns, Milhaud, Poulenc, Satie, Berlioz, and more, featuring violinist Renaud Capuçon and pianists Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, George Li, and Michelle and Christina Naughton
  • Opening Weekend performances with guest soloist Olga Kern in Barber’s Piano Concerto
  • Season finale performances of Puccini’s opera Turandot in concert
  • Every classical program continues to be webcast for free on Live from Orchestra Hall series

Detroit, (Jan. 29, 2017) – The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) today announced its 2017-2018 Season Classical and Pops series. Music Director Leonard Slatkin will open the DSO’s Classical Season on Thursday, October 12, 2017, with a weekend of performances in Orchestra Hall featuring acclaimed pianist Olga Kern in Samuel Barber’s Piano Concerto. The 2017-2018 Season marks Slatkin’s tenth anniversary season as DSO Music Director—a remarkable ten years of visionary, artistic accomplishment—after which he will become the DSO’s Music Director Laureate, in which he will program, prepare, and conduct four concert weeks during each classical season and advise on artistic matters, personnel, and artistic titled positions.

The Classical Season includes 13 concert programs in 11 weeks conducted by Slatkin, including a French Festival from February 8-24, 2018 (the DSO’s fifth Winter Music Festival, and the first to be dedicated to a country rather than a composer), eight world premieres by young composers (seven works by American composers, each conducted by Slatkin), a season finale concert presentation of Puccini’s opera Turandot, and more.

A wealth of guest artists will also appear with the orchestra, including conductors Fabien Gabel, Giancarlo Guerrero, Hannu Lintu, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, and Juraj Valčuha; pianists Seong-Jin Cho (First Prize, 2015 Chopin Competition), Stephen Hough, Louis Lortie, and Daniil Trifonov (performing his own concerto); violinists Ray Chen, Augustin Hadelich, Stefan Jackiw; and many others.

DSO Music Director Leonard Slatkin said about the 2017-2018 season, “For my final season as music director of the DSO, it will be my pleasure to lead eleven weeks of subscription concerts at Orchestra Hall. Instead of focusing on one composer for our Winter Festival, we will explore the variety of music, song, and dance that inhabits the French soul. In addition to outstanding soloists, both from within and outside the DSO, we will conclude my tenure with that grandest of all operas, Puccini’s Turandot. As an advocate for American composers, I am also conducting seven world premieres, including six written by past and present students of composers I have championed throughout my career.”

The Classical Season features eight world premieres in total, including six concert openers commissioned by the DSO and conducted by Slatkin from Conor Brown (studied with Joan Tower), Loren Loiacono (studied with Steven Stucky), Joshua Cerdenia (studied with Christopher Rouse), Steven Bryant (studied with Cindy McTee), Roshanne Etezady (studied with William Bolcom), and Jared Miller (studied with John Corigliano).

“I wanted to continue to champion American composers, but in a different way,” said Slatkin. “So, I wrote and called different composers whose works I have championed over the years. Rather than asking them to write pieces for me, I thought it would be interesting to commission works from their students, either past or current. Introducing these fresh, new voices to the orchestra and audience will give us a glimpse into what America’s concert music scene will look and sound like years from now.”

Slatkin also conducts the world premiere of Chris Cerrone’s Violin Concerto, a DSO commission, with guest soloist Jennifer Koh. The eighth DSO world premiere of the season is Many, Yet One by Swedish composer and DSO Elaine Lebenbom Memorial Award recipient Britta Byström, which will be conducted by James Gaffigan.

The DSO also announced its exciting 2017-2018 Pops Season, which will bring favorites from Broadway, film and TV, rock, jazz, country, and more to the Orchestra Hall stage. Principal Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik will lead three Pops Series programs: Women Rock, a celebration of extraordinary female rock, pop, and soul artists from Carole King and Janis Joplin to Tina Turner; Ella & Louis, a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald (in honor of Ella’s centennial year) and Louis Armstrong; and Home For The Holidays, Detroit’s favorite family holiday tradition. Associate Conductor Michelle Merrill will conduct three Pops Series programs devoted to music from Disney films, the Harry Potter series, and doo wop music. Other Pops Series concerts will feature music by the rock band Queen, from the Nashville Songbook, and from the Star Wars and Star Trek franchises.

The 2017-2018 Paradise Jazz Series will kick off on Friday, October 20 with 13-year-old jazz prodigy and Grammy Award nominee Joey Alexander making his highly-anticipated Detroit debut in Orchestra Hall. The remaining Paradise Jazz Series concerts and the DSO’s Young People’s Family Concerts will be announced in February. The 2017-2018 William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series will be announced in the summer.

The 2017-2018 Season will take place after an exciting summer, during which the DSO will embark on a historic three-week tour of Asia, July 14-29, including its debut performances in China and its first visit to Japan in 19 years. The summer will also include the DSO’s return to Greenfield Village for the annual Salute to America Independence Day concert weekend, as well as William Davidson Neighborhood Series Concerts, special performances at Ford House and Meadow Brook Amphitheatre, chamber recitals, and more.

 

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