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About This Concert

Nordic forest spirits meet Greek gods in a performance that combines ethereal expressiveness with glittering Romanticism as Vänskä conducts Tómasson, Siblelius, Beethoven, and the U.S. premiere of composer Geoffrey Gordon’s Prometheus.

Program

BEETHOVEN
Overture to The Creatures of Prometheus / 5 min

*GORDON
Prometheus [U.S. Premiere] / 24 min

—INTERMISSION 20 MINUTES—

TÓMASSON
Piano Concerto No. 2 / 16 min

SIBELIUS
Tapiola / 19 min

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Artists

Fun Facts

  • In the Romantic era during which Beethoven composed, Prometheus was viewed as symbol of lone genius whose attempts to improve human existence could lead to tragedy, as reflected in the sub-title for Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein: A Modern Prometheus.
  • Tapiola was Sibelius's last major work, a tone poem, inspired by the wanderings of a forest spirit in the The Kalevala, a nineteenth century epic poem based on Finnish folklore and mythology.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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About This Concert:

The Target Atrium becomes a woodwind’s paradise as Principal Clarinet Gabriel Campos Zamora performs the piece that brought Brahms out of retirement, Principal Oboe John Snow and Principal Bassoon Fei Xie bring Poulenc’s trio to witty and graceful life, and English horn player Marni J. Hougham is joined by four string players to perform an aria composed by Hougham’s friend Neal Desby.

DESBY
Aria for English Horn and String Quartet

POULENC
Trio for Oboe, Bassoon and Piano

BRAHMS
Quintet for Clarinet and Strings

Fun Facts:

  • English horn player Marni Hougham has been a member of the Minnesota Orchestra since 1997
  • Composer Neal Desby and Marni Hougham are good friends. Desby wrote this piece in 2016 specifically for her, and hopes to re-orchestrate it someday for English horn with string orchestra.
  • Brahms came out of retirement specifically to write the Clarinet Quintet (and a few additional pieces) for Richard Mühlfield, a German clarinetist whose performances had greatly inspired him.
  • Brahms’ Clarinet Quintet has been played several times on the Orchestra’s Chamber Music series, each time with Music Director Osmo Vänskä performing the clarinet part. This performance features one of the Orchestra’s newest musicians, Principal Clarinet Gabriel Campos Zamora.

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Accessibility

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Read more about Accessibility at Orchestra Hall.

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About This Concert

Immerse yourself in beauty of Leonard Bernstein’s mercurial Serenade, performed spectacularly by virtuoso violinist Jennifer Koh, as well as stormily passionate minor-key symphonies from two towering classical composers who Bernstein cherished and championed.

Program

HAYDN
Symphony No. 44, Mourning Symphony / 22 min

*BERNSTEIN
Serenade, after Plato's "Symposium" / 30 min

—INTERMISSION 20 MINUTES—

*BERNSTEIN
Divertimento / 15 min

MOZART
Symphony No. 40 / 22 min

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Artists

Fun Facts

  • Leonard Bernstein composed Divertimento for the Boston Symphony Orchestra's centenary, and also in honor of Boston itself, as he was graduate of Harvard University and The Boston Latin School. The piece is a series based on two notes, B for Boston and C for Centennial.
  • Plato's Symposium was inspired, according to Bernstein, by ancient dialogues about the nature of love, though scholars now speculate it was also a coded reference to Bernstein's own homosexuality.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

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About This Concert

Fusing operatic drama, gorgeous solo moments and symphonic prowess, Verdi’s Requiem is a transcendent musical rollercoaster well suited to the gift of Edward Gardner, a renowned conductor of symphonies and operas worldwide.

Program

VERDI
Requiem / 83 min

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Artists

Fun Facts

  • Verdi's Requiem Mass was first performed in the Milan Cathedral on May 22, 1874. He composed it to honor a famous novelist and poet Alessandro Manzoni, who died the previous year.
  • A student at Eton, Cambridge, and the Royal Academy of Music, Gardner was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2012 Birthday Honours for services to music.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

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About This Concert

A pair of symphonic poems, an audacious piano concerto, and a folkloric work by Polish composer Witold Lutosławski combine to create the perfect musical menu for late spring: lush, impressionistic and shimmering.

Program

BORISOVA-OLLAS 
The Kingdom of Silence  / 15 min

*GERSHWIN
Piano Concerto in F / 29 min

—INTERMISSION 20 MINUTES—

DEBUSSY
Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun / 10 min

LUTOSŁAWSKI
Concerto for Orchestra / 26 min

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Artists

Fun Facts

  • The Baltimore Sun proclaims “Borisova-Ollas’ The Kingdom of Silence is beautifully structured…it begins and ends with exquisite subtleties.”
  • A performance of the Gershwin Concerto’s third movement appears in a humorous fantasy sequence in the film An American in Paris (1951).

*This work is part of Minnesota Orchestra's season-long exploration and celebration of American music.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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About This Concert

For much of musical history, LGBT musicians and composers were marginalized and censored, even as they permanently transformed the landscape of classical music. In this concert, we celebrate the talent and legacy of composers who ignored convention and created lasting masterpieces.

Program

*BARBER
Overture to The School for Scandal / 8 min

*COPLAND
Saturday Night Waltz, from Rodeo / 4 min

POULENC
Allegro con fuoco, mvt. I from Sinfonietta / 5 min

*STRAYHORN
Lush Life / 3 min

*OLIVEROS
Dissolving Your Earplugs / 6 min

*HIGDON
blue cathedral / 11 min

—INTERMISSION 20 MINUTES—

TCHAIKOVSKY
Andante non troppo, mvt. I from Serenade for Strings / 9 min

MORLEY
Suite from Watership Down

DIAMOND
Music for Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, II: Balcony Scene / 4 min

*BERNSTEIN
Lonely Town (Pas de Deux), from On the Town Suite / 3 min

DAVIES
An Orkney Wedding, with Sunrise / 13 min

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Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Sam Bergman, host and viola
  • Debbie Duncan, vocalist
  • Mary Louise Knutson, piano

Fun Facts

  • Inside the Classics features a pre-concert happy hour, local craft brews, and a chance to mingle with musicians onstage after the performance.
  • Inside the Classics, now in its ninth season, features Minnesota Orchestra violist and host Sam Bergman and conductor Sarah Hicks. The duo explore classical music through conversation and orchestral excerpts. This Inside the Classics concert is part of the Minnesota Orchestra's Casual Concerts series.

*This work is part of Minnesota Orchestra's season-long exploration and celebration of American music.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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About This Concert:

Unique perspectives and creative motivations—including poetry, dance, jazz, opera and tragedy—helped to inspire these four chamber pieces from throughout the 20th century.

WALTON
Suite from Façade

BARTÓK
Contrasts

STRAUSS
Sextet from Capriccio

SHOSTAKOVICH
String Quartet No. 8

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Fun Facts:

  • The premiere of Façade featured the poet, Edith Sitwell, reciting her work through a megaphone, while the composer conducted the original six-player ensemble.
  • Bartók joined Benny Goodman and Joseph Szigeti onstage as the pianist to complete the ensemble for its premiere.
  • The original suggestion from violinist Joseph Szigeti was for Bartók to create a two-movement piece that was short enough to fit on a 78 rpm record.
  • Shostakovich composed his String Quartet No. 8 in three days.
  • Several times throughout his Eighth Quartet, Shostakovich includes the famous DSCH motive, created from the letters in his own name.

Accessibility

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Read more about Accessibility at Orchestra Hall.

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About This Concert

Layering expressive understanding with elegant technique, American conductor Kent Nagano and Austrian pianist Till Fellner shine in this concert of Mozart and Bruckner that truly reveals the range of their luminous talents.

Program

MOZART
Piano Concerto No. 20  / 28 min

—INTERMISSION 20 MINUTES—

BRUCKNER
Symphony No. 6 / 54 min

Artists

Fun Facts

  • A late bloomer, Anton Bruckner only began composing music at age 37.
  • The Chicago Classical Review praises Fellner’s “easy fluency,” “pearly tone” and “singing way with a phrase.”

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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About This Concert

By turns turbulent, calm and ecstatic, Mahler’s Tenth Symphony evokes both despair and hope, and Osmo Vänskä skillfully teases out the extremes to revel in their emotional depth for the sweeping season finale.

Program

MAHLER/Cooke
Symphony No. 10 / 80 min

Artists

Fun Facts

  • In his lifetime, Mahler was better known as a conductor rather than a composer and is considered to be one of the most passionate and greatest conductors in music history.
  • A Post-Romantic period composer, Mahler’s work foreshadowed the progressive tonality of the 20th century.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Complete event details »