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Osmo Vänskä /// Music Director

Press Room: Press Releases

Roderick Cox Conducts His Subscription Debut with the Minnesota Orchestra

Associate Conductor Roderick Cox conducts music by Debussy, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky

Joyce Yang performs Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2

Roderick Cox, the Minnesota Orchestra’s associate conductor, makes his subscription debut in concerts on January 19, 20 and 21. Cox was named the Minnesota Orchestra’s associate conductor in September 2016 after one year as assistant conductor. These concerts begin with Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, and then feature brilliant Korean-born pianist Joyce Yang in Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto. Following intermission, Cox leads the Orchestra in a performance of Tchaikovsky’s vibrant and powerful Fourth Symphony.     

The concerts are performed at the Orchestra’s home venue in downtown Minneapolis, Orchestra Hall, on Thursday, January 19, at 11 a.m.; Friday, January 20, at 8 p.m.; and Saturday, January 21, at 8 p.m., with ticket prices ranging from $29 to $96. Tickets are available online at and by phone at 612-371-5656. For further purchasing details, refer to the section at the conclusion of this press release.

Roderick Cox, conductor
Roderick Cox regularly conducts Young People’s Concerts, family programs, special events and outdoor community concerts, while serving as cover conductor for many of the Minnesota Orchestra’s concerts. In December he led the Orchestra in a “Spirit of the Season” concert presented in collaboration with Shiloh Temple International Ministries in north Minneapolis. A native of Macon, Georgia, he previously served as assistant conductor of the Alabama Symphony Orchestra and music director of the Alabama Symphony Youth Orchestra. Among his honors, he was selected by the League of American Orchestras as one of five conductors presented at the 2016 Bruno Walter National Conducting Preview. During the 2016-17 season, he debuts with the Cleveland Orchestra, Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra and Colour of Music Festival, and in September he led concerts in Washington, D.C., for the opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. More: or

Joyce Yang, piano
Joyce Yang came to international attention in 2005 when, at age 19, she won the silver medal at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition as its youngest contestant. She is a recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant and has performed with many of America’s most prestigious orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra and Chicago Symphony. She has appeared in recital at New York’s Lincoln Center and Metropolitan Museum, Washington’s Kennedy Center, Chicago’s Symphony Hall and Zurich’s Tonhalle. Highlights of her current season include a debut with the San Diego Symphony and recitals in Cincinnati, Denver, Nashville, Seattle, Anchorage, Beverly Hills and Spivey Hall in Georgia. More:,

Debussy, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky
Like the poem it is based on, Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun is impressionistic—offering a series of sensations without formal structure. A sleeping faun, represented by a languid, sensual flute solo, dreams of a romantic tryst with forest nymphs.

The solo piano is heard almost continuously in Rachmaninoff’s very challenging Concerto No. 2. Deep chords in a haunting opening theme give way to a meditative second movement (flute, clarinet and strings carry the theme in turn), followed by a vigorous, aggressive march.

Tchaikovsky’s Fourth, like Beethoven’s Fifth, presents a Fate motif at the outset. This is an adventurous work carrying us through lyrical episodes as well as high drama on the way to the exuberant conclusion.

Minnesota Orchestra Classical Concerts

Thursday, January 19, 2017, 11 a.m. / Orchestra Hall
Friday, January 20, 2017, 8 p.m./ Orchestra Hall
Saturday, January 21, 2017, 8 p.m./ Orchestra Hall

Minnesota Orchestra
Roderick Cox
, conductor
Joyce Yang, piano

DEBUSSY                             Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun
RACHMANINOFF             Piano Concerto No. 2
TCHAIKOVSKY                  Symphony No. 4

Tickets: $29 to $96

OH+ Events
Free Concert Preview with Paul Gunther, Roderick Cox and Joyce Yang in the Auditorium on Thursday, January 19, at 10:15 a.m., and in the Target Atrium on both Friday, January 20, at 7:15 p.m., and Saturday, January 21, at 7:15 p.m.

For more information on this and other OH+ Events:


Subscription packages and individual tickets can be purchased online at, or by calling 612-371-5656 (612-371-5642 for subscriptions) or 800-292-4141. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and beginning two hours before all ticketed performances); and at the Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Office, International Centre, 5th floor, 920 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.). For more information, call 612-371-5656, or visit For subscriptions, call 612-371-5642 or visit For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662.

All programs, artists, dates, times and prices subject to change.

The Star Tribune is the Minnesota Orchestra’s media partner for the 2016-17 season.

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

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Gwen Pappas, Director of Public Relations 
(612) 371-5628 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emma Plehal, Public Relations Writer and Coordinator
(612) 371-5625 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Press Contacts

Gwen Pappas

Director of Communications
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Carl Schroeder

Publications Editor
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Emma Plehal

Communications Manager and Assistant Editor
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Isaac Risseeuw

Social Media and Content Coordinator
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Communications Office

Minnesota Orchestra
1111 Nicollet Mall
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55403
Phone: 612.371.5600
Fax: 612.371.7170

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