BSO Music Director James Levine And The Boston Symphony Orchestra Announce The 2007-08 Season
Friday, March 30, 2007
BSO Music Director James Levine will open the Boston Symphony
Orchestraís 127th season on Thursday, October 4, leading mezzo-soprano
Susan Graham and pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet in an all-Ravel program,
and will close the 2007-08 season seven months later with rare concert
performances of Berliozí epic opera, The Trojans.
The BSOís 2007-08 season will feature some of the most colossal
works for orchestra, including Smetanaís M· Vlast; Bachís St.
Matthew Passion; Elgarís The Dream of Gerontius; Mussorgskyís
Pictures at an Exhibition; Debussyís La Mer; Saint-SaÎnsí Symphony
No. 3, Organ; three Mahler symphonies; and three Strauss tone poems, as
well as performances of new and recent works by William Bolcom, Elliott
Carter, Brett Dean, Henri Dutilleux, Michael Gandolfi, Osvaldo Golijov,
and John Harbison. The new season also offers an impressive roster of
many of the worldís best-known conductors, including BSO Conductor
Emeritus Bernard Haitink, Sir Colin Davis, Christoph von Dohn·nyi,
Charles Dutoit, Mark Elder, Rafael Fr¸hbeck de Burgos, Daniele Gatti,
Miguel Harth-Bedoya, and Marek Janowski. Julian Kuerti and Markus Stenz
make their debuts on the BSO podium.
HIGHLIGHTS OF JAMES LEVINEíS 2007-08 BSO SEASON
Highlights of Maestro Levineís fourth season as BSO Music
Director include Debussyís La Mer, Smetanaís M· Vlast, and
Mahlerís First and Ninth symphonies, as well as Mahlerís Das Lied
von der Erde. Mr. Levine leads the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the
world premieres of Elliott Carterís Horn Concerto, John Harbisonís
Symphony No. 5 - both BSO commissions - and the world premiere of
William Bolcomís Symphony No. 8, for chorus and orchestra, a BSO 125th
Anniversary Commission, as well as the American premiere of Henri
Dutilleuxís Le Temps líHorloge, for soprano and orchestra, a BSO
125th Anniversary Co-commission. In addition, he conducts back-to-back
Brahms programs with pianist Evgeny Kissin performing the composerís
Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2. Rounding out an ambitious and musically
varied season, Maestro Levine also appears at the piano, in recital with
German bass-baritone Thomas Quasthoff, performing Schubertís
ACCLAIMED GUEST ARTISTS AT SYMPHONY HALL
Next season also brings an exceptionally talented lineup of
world-renowned pianists to perform with the BSO, including such artists
as Leif Ove Andsnes, Leon Fleisher, Randall Hodgkinson, Evgeny Kissin,
Garrick Ohlsson, Andr·s Schiff, Peter Serkin, Jean-Yves Thibaudet,
Mitsuko Uchida, and Lars Vogt. Additional featured artists include
cellists Yo-Yo Ma and Truls M¯rk, BSO principal harpist Ann Hobson
Pilot, harpsichordist Mark Kroll, BSO principal horn James Sommerville,
and violinists Isabelle Faust, Vivian Hagner, Vadim Repin, Christian
Tetzlaff, and Frank Peter Zimmermann.
Many of classical musicís leading vocalists will also appear
with the orchestra, including tenor Johan Botha, mezzo-soprano Jane
Bunnell, mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly, baritone Dwayne Croft, tenor Eric
Cutler, bass-baritone Gerald Finley, soprano RenÈe Fleming, tenor
Marcello Giordani, mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, mezzo-soprano Kate
Lindsey, mezzo-soprano Yvonne Naef, tenor Ronald Naldi, mezzo-soprano
Anne Sofie von Otter, bass Eric Owens, bass-baritone Thomas Quasthoff,
mezzo-soprano Wendy White, and bass Kwangchul Youn.
In a special one-night-only event, the SimÛn BolÌvar Youth
Orchestra of Venezuela and Gustavo Dudamel comes to Symphony Hall to
perform BartÛkís Concerto for Orchestra, Bernsteinís Symphonic
Dances from West Side Story, and a selection of South American works at
8 p.m. on November 7. The SimÛn BolÌvar Youth Orchestra is the flagship
ensemble of Venezuelaís unique and inspiring system of music education
and performance. For three decades, ìEl Sistemaî has been making
classical musicians out of half a million young Venezuelans,
transforming the lives of that nationís poorest youth. Among its most
important alumni is the high-profile young conductor, Mr. Dudamel, who
is building a strong international reputation and made his BSO debut at
Tanglewood in August 2006 at age 25. This concert is presented by the
New England Conservatory in association with the Celebrity Series and
the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
NEW WORKS FOR THE BSO
Continuing the Boston Symphony Orchestraís proud and
longstanding tradition of introducing new music from the worldís most
important composers, the 2007-08 season will feature the world premieres
of three new works by Elliott Carter, John Harbison, and William Bolcom,
all BSO commissions. The BSO also gives the American premieres of a new
work by Henri Dutilleux, a BSO 125th Anniversary Co-commission, and
Australian composer Brett Deanís The Lost Art of Letter Writing with
violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann, for whom the work was written. Other
contemporary works featured next season include Michael Gandolfiís The
Garden of Cosmic Speculation and Osvaldo Golijovís Ausencia, for cello
and strings, with Yo-Yo Ma.
MAJOR ORCHESTRAL WORKS TO BE PERFORMED AT SYMPHONY HALL
In what will surely be a high point of the season, BSO Conductor
Emeritus Bernard Haitink leads three performances of J.S. Bachís St.
Matthew Passion with a cast of vocalists that includes tenor Ian
Bostridge (Evangelist), baritone Thomas Bauer (Jesus), soprano Marlis
Petersen, mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn, and tenor Steven Davislim,
as well as the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor, and
the PALS Childrenís Chorus, Jennifer Kane, artistic director.
Sir Colin Davis leads Elgarís The Dream of Gerontius, a deeply
moving work for which the BSO is joined by mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly,
tenor Ben Heppner, bass-baritone Gerald Finley, and the Tanglewood
Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor. Rafael Fr¸hbeck de Burgos
leads the Boston Symphony Orchestra in three of Straussí tone poems,
Don Juan, Till Eulenspiegelís Merry Pranks, and An Alpine Symphony,
as well as Mussorgskyís Pictures at an Exhibition and Rachmaninoffís
Piano Concerto No. 2 with Leif Ove Andsnes.
Cellist Yo-Yo Ma reprises his performance of Osvaldo Golijovís
Azul, for cello and orchestra, the Symphony Hall premiere of a BSO 125th
Anniversary Commission that received its world premiere last August at
Tanglewood. This program will also include Golijovís Ausencia, for
cello and strings, also with Yo-Yo Ma as soloist.
Symphony Hallís 67-stop Aeolian-Skinner organ is spotlighted
twice in next seasonís programming, with Simon Preston joining the BSO
for Poulencís Concerto for Organ, Timpani, and Strings, and James
David Christie joining the BSO for Saint-SaÎnsí Symphony No. 3, Organ.
JAMES LEVINEíS FULL SEASON WITH THE BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
The Opening Night at Symphony gala concert (October 4) features
BSO Music Director James Levine leading mezzo-soprano Susan Graham as
soloist with the BSO in the song cycle ShÈhÈrazade, as well as Jean-Yves
Thibaudet in Ravelís Piano concerto in G. The program also includes
Alborada del gracioso and Daphnis et ChloÈ, Suite No. 2.
Mr. Thibaudet reprises Ravelís Piano Concerto in G for the first
BSO subscription program of the 2007-08 season (October 5-6), on which
the Tanglewood Festival Chorus joins the BSO for a complete performance
of Daphnis et ChloÈ under the baton of James Levine. Alborada del
gracioso and Pavane for a Dead Princess round out the all-Ravel
Christian Tetzlaff joins Maestro Levine for Bergís Violin
Concerto on a program that closes with Mahlerís Symphony No. 9, the
first of three major Mahler pieces Levine leads this season (November
8-10). The November 13 program is solely Mahlerís Ninth Symphony, his
final completed work in the genre.
BSO principal horn James Sommerville performs the world premiere
of Elliott Carterís Horn Concerto, a Boston Symphony Orchestra
commission (November 15-20). Spanning more than two centuries of music,
the program also includes Haydnís Symphony No. 104, London, and
Mahlerís monumental Symphony No. 1 under the baton of Maestro Levine.
Maestro Levine next leads the Boston Symphony Orchestra in
Smetanaís complete M· Vlast, a cycle of six tone poems inspired by the
Bohemian countryside and rarely performed complete. These will be the
first BSO performances of the complete work at Symphony Hall in 35
In an all-French program reinforcing the BSOís proud tradition
of performing French orchestral music, the Boston Symphony Orchestra led
by James Levine gives the American premiere of Henri Dutilleuxís Le
Temps líHorloge, a BSO 125th Anniversary Co-commission with the Saito
Kinen Festival and Radio France (November 29-December 1). Soprano RenÈe
Fleming joins Maestro Levine and the BSO for a set of orchestral Duparc
songs on this same program, which also includes orchestral excerpts from
Berliozí RomÈo et Juliette and Debussyís La Mer.
Violinist Isabelle Faust makes her BSO debut with pianist Peter
Serkin in Bergís Chamber Concerto for piano and violin with thirteen
wind instruments (February 20-26). Maestro Levine and the orchestra
bookend the concerto with Mozartís Symphony No. 29 and Brahmsí
Serenade No. 2.
Maestro Levine leads the BSO in two all-Brahms programs, both
featuring Evgeny Kissin as soloist in both of Brahmsí piano concertos,
paired in each case with the composerís Symphony No. 3. Mr. Kissin
performs Brahmsí Piano Concerto No. 2 on the first program (April 8-9)
and Piano Concerto No. 1 on the second (April 11-12).
The Boston Symphony Orchestra will give the world premiere of John
Harbisonís Symphony No. 5, a BSO commission, with mezzo-soprano Kate
Lindsey and baritone Nathan Gunn under the baton of Maestro Levine
(April 17-18). The program closes with the BSOís third Mahler work of
the season, the composerís ìsong-symphonyî Das Lied von der Erde,
with mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter and tenor Johan Botha.
Maestro Levine also leads the Boston Symphony Orchestra in its
final program of the 2007-08 season, ambitious concert performances of
Berliozí Les Troyens (The Trojans), inspired by Virgilís Aeneid.
This marks the first time the BSO has presented a complete performance
of this epic, five-act opera, which was never performed in its entirety
during Berliozí lifetime. It is also the only major Berlioz work the
BSO has never previously performed. Berliozí four-and-a-half hour
Romantic work will be sung in French with English supertitles and
presented in two parts - Part I, The Capture of Troy (April 22-26), and
Part II, The Trojans at Carthage (April 30-May 2) - and then in its
entirety on Sunday, May 4, with Part I at 3 p.m. and Part II at 6:30
p.m. An illustrious cast of vocalists joins the BSO in this mammoth
undertaking, including tenor Marcello Giordani (Aeneas), mezzo-soprano
Anne Sofie von Otter (Dido), mezzo-soprano Yvonne Naef (Cassandra and
Ghost of Cassandra), baritone Dwayne Croft (Chorebus and Ghost of
Chorebus), bass Kwangchul Youn (Narbal), bass-baritone Clayton Brainerd
(Pantheus), mezzo-soprano Kate Lindsey (Ascanius), mezzo-soprano Wendy
White (Anna), mezzo-soprano Jane Bunnell (Hecuba), tenor Eric Cutler
(Iopas), tenor Kenneth Tarver (Hylas), tenor Ronald Naldi (Helenus),
bass Eric Owens (Ghost of Hector), and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus,
John Oliver, conductor.
MAESTRO LEVINE PERFORMS WITH THOMAS QUASTHOFF
For what is sure to be a memorable performance of the 2007-08
season at Symphony Hall, bass-baritone Thomas Quasthoff sings
Schubertís powerful song cycle Winterreise, with James Levine at
the piano (February 24). Later the same week, Mr. Quasthoff appears
with Maestro Levine and the BSO to sing five Schubert songs orchestrated
by various composers: Tr‰nenregen (orch. Webern), Prometheus (orch.
Reger), Der Wegweiser (orch. Webern), St‰ndchen (orch. Offenbach), and
Erlkˆnig (orch. Reger). This program also includes the world
premiere of William Bolcomís Symphony No. 8 with the Tanglewood
Festival Chorus, a BSO 125th Anniversary Commission, and Schubertís
Symphony No. 4, Tragic (February 28-March 1).
CONDUCTOR EMERITUS BERNARD HAITINK
In a 2007-08 season highlight, BSO Conductor Emeritus Bernard
Haitink leads J.S. Bachís Baroque masterpiece St. Matthew Passion
(March 20-22). The Boston Symphony Orchestra will be joined in these
performances by tenor Ian Bostridge (Evangelist), baritone Thomas Bauer
(Jesus), soprano Marlis Petersen, mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn,
tenor Steven Davislim, bass-baritone Peter Harvey, the Tanglewood
Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor, and the PALS Childrenís
Chorus, Jennifer Kane, artistic director.
Maestro Haitink returns the following week to conduct the BSO and
Andr·s Schiff in BartÛkís Piano Concerto No. 3 on a program that
closes with Schubertís Symphony in C, The Great (March 27-29).
GUEST CONDUCTORS AND SOLOISTS
Robert Spano, music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and
a former BSO assistant conductor, leads the orchestra and Simon Preston
in Poulencís Concerto for Organ, Timpani, and Strings, offering
listeners their first chance in two seasons to hear Symphony Hallís
famous, recently refurbished pipe organ (October 11-16). The program
also includes Tchaikovskyís Symphony No. 6, PathÈtique, and Michael
Gandolfiís The Garden of Cosmic Speculation, inspired by a Scottish
garden designed by architect Charles Jencks.
Pianist Lars Vogt makes his BSO subscription series debut
performing Beethovenís Piano Concerto No. 3 under the baton of
Christoph von Dohn·nyi (October 18-20). Lutosławskiís Musique
funËbre and Beethovenís Symphony No. 5 round out the program.
Frequent BSO guest conductor Marek Janowski takes the podium to
lead Truls M¯rk in Shostakovichís Cello Concerto No. 2 on a program
that closes with Brucknerís Symphony No. 9 (October 24-30).
Markus Stenz, a former Tanglewood Music Center Fellow and now a
frequent figure on podiums from Cologne to Chicago, makes his Boston
Symphony Orchestra debut leading Mozartís Symphony No. 1 and
Schumannís Symphony No. 2 (November 1-3). Frank Peter Zimmermann
joins the orchestra in this program for Mozartís Violin Concerto No. 2
and the American premiere of Australian composer Brett Deanís violin
concerto The Lost Art of Letter Writing, which was written for Mr.
Miguel Harth-Bedoya makes his BSO subscription series debut
conducting the orchestra and Yo-Yo Ma in the Symphony Hall premiere of
Osvaldo Golijovís kaleidoscopic Azul (December 6-8), heard here in a
revised version of this BSO 125th Anniversary Commission that was
premiered last August at Tanglewood. Mr. Ma also performs Golijovís
Ausencia, for cello and strings, a work conceived in homage to the
Argentine tango tradition. The program closes with Dvoř·kís Symphony
A welcome figure on the Boston Symphony Orchestra podium, Rafael
Fr¸hbeck de Burgos returns to lead the first two programs of 2008,
conducting two of Richard Straussí most beloved tone poems, Don Juan
and Till Eulenspiegelís Merry Pranks, and Mussorgskyís Pictures
at an Exhibition (orch. Ravel) on his first program (January 3-8). He
returns the following week for Rachmaninoffís Piano Concerto No. 2
with Leif Ove Andsnes and Straussí An Alpine Symphony.
The esteemed Sir Colin Davis conducts the BSO in Mozartís
Symphony No. 36, Linz, and Piano Concerto No. 23 in A with Mitsuko
Uchida, on a program closing with Schubertís Symphony No. 2 (January
16-22). For his second program of 2007-08, Sir Colin returns to the
podium for Elgarís moving choral masterpiece The Dream of Gerontius
(January 24-26), which was previously performed by the BSO only in Sir
Colinís performances here in 1982. These 2007-08 performances feature
mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly, tenor Ben Heppner, bass-baritone Gerald
Finley, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, John Oliver, conductor.
Charles Dutoit leads the BSO in a concertante-style program
culminating in Saint-SaÎnsí Symphony No. 3, Organ, with James David
Christie (February 6-12). Vivian Hagner makes her BSO debut in
Prokofievís Violin Concerto on this program, which opens with
Martinís neoclassical Petite symphonie concertante for harp, piano,
harpsichord, and double string orchestra, featuring harpist Ann Hobson
Pilot, pianist Randall Hodgkinson, and harpsichordist Mark Kroll.
In his BSO subscription series debut, British conductor Mark Elder
conducts Shostakovichís Symphony No. 4 and Sibeliusí Violin Concerto
with Vadim Repin (February 14-16).
Newly appointed BSO Assistant Conductor Julian Kuerti, a former
Tanglewood Music Center Conducting Fellow and currently assistant
conductor of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, makes his Boston Symphony
Orchestra debut leading Knussenís lively curtain-raiser The Way to
Castle Yonder and Dvoř·kís Symphony No. 7 (March 6-11). Marking his
80th birthday year, Leon Fleisher returns to Symphony Hall to perform
Beethovenís Piano Concerto No. 5, Emperor, his first performance of a
Beethoven concerto with the BSO since 1960.
In a rare United States appearance, acclaimed Italian conductor
Daniele Gatti leads the orchestra and the acclaimed American pianist
Garrick Ohlsson in Schumannís Piano Concerto on a program that closes
with Shostakovichís Symphony No. 5 (March 13-15).
CHAMBER MUSIC TEAS, PRELUDE CONCERTS, AND PRE-CONCERT TALKS
The Boston Symphony will continue its series of Chamber Music
offerings in 2007-08, including Chamber Music Prelude Concerts and
Friday-afternoon Chamber Teas.
The BSO will also continue its series of Pre-Concert and Open
Rehearsal Talks next season, offering free, informative talks, including
recorded musical examples, prior to every Boston Symphony subscription
concert and Open Rehearsal throughout the 2007-08 season.