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Thursday December 15, 2022

Cellist Alban Gerhardt Performs Schumann’s Cello Concerto

Guest conductor Matthew Halls makes his Minnesota Orchestra debut January 13 and 14 to lead the ensemble in concerts that also feature Hailstork’s Epitaph for a Man Who Dreamed and Mendelssohn’s Third Symphony

Making his first appearance with the Minnesota Orchestra since 2019, cellist Alban Gerhardt will perform Robert Schumann’s momentous Cello Concerto. Known for his expert interpretations of a wide range of repertoire, Gerhardt will display his musicality in full as he performs the challenging work—the only cello concerto that Schumann composed. Guest conductor Matthew Halls will make his Minnesota Orchestra debut with these concerts; beginning in the 2023-24 season he assumes a new role as the next chief conductor and artistic director of Finland’s Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra.

The program will be performed at Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis on Friday, January 13 at 8 p.m., and Saturday, January 14, at 8 p.m. Ticket prices range from $20 to $89. Free tickets are available for young listeners under the age of 18, thanks to the Orchestra’s Hall Pass program. For more information, visit minnesotaorchestra.org/hallpass

In recognition of Martin Luther King Jr. Day (which is observed on Monday, January 16), the weekend performances will begin with Adolphus Hailstork’s somber Epitaph for a Man Who Dreamed (In memoriam: Martin Luther King, Jr.). Hailstork has stated that the piece “represents the graveside service of a great man. The mourners gather and sing a spiritual, the music gradually swelling as more people arrive and join in the singing. After reflecting on the hopes and dreams inspired by this leader, they lift their bowed heads and move to carry on the work he began.” Born in 1941 in Rochester, New York, Hailstork composed Epitaph in 1979 and today continues to write new works for major orchestras and ensembles, building on his reputation as one of America's eminent composers.

The concerts close with Felix Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 3. Often referred to as the Scottish Symphony, the piece was inspired by a trip that the German composer took to Scotland in 1829 at the age of 20. The symphony was given its eventual premiere in 1842, a fiercely productive time for Mendelssohn, one of the most popular composers of the Romantic era.


About Matthew Halls

British conductor Matthew Halls, who in September 2022 was named chief conductor designate of Finland’s Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, is welcomed for his debut with the Minnesota Orchestra with these concerts. This season he also debuts with the Orchestre de chambre de Paris and continues his longstanding partnerships with the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, Houston Symphony and Indianapolis Symphony. He is a frequent quest conductor of orchestras around the world, including the Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Dallas Symphony, Finnish Radio Symphony, Iceland Symphony, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, Seattle Symphony and Wiener Symphoniker. In addition, he led the U.S. premiere of James MacMillan’s Fourth Symphony with the Pittsburgh Symphony.

Halls also has extensive experience conducting choirs and opera companies to great critical acclaim, with his operatic credits ranging from Handel’s Ariodante to Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. His discography includes Bach’s harpsichord concertos conducted from the keyboard, Bach’s Easter and Ascension oratorios, and the premiere recording of Handel’s Parnasso in Festa, which garnered the Stanley Sadie Handel Prize. More: askonasholt.com.

About Alban Gerhardt

German cellist Alban Gerhardt enjoys a dynamic career as a leading soloist and chamber musician. Since his 1991 debut with the Berlin Philharmonic, he has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras, including European ensembles such as the Royal Concertbegouw Orchestra, Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich and Orchestre National de France, as well as all the British and German radio orchestras, and American ensembles including the Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra and Philadelphia Orchestra.

Gerhardt last appeared with the Minnesota Orchestra in November 2019 in the U.S. premiere of Brett Dean’s Cello Concerto, which he had earlier premiered with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Among the many other new works he has championed is Julian Anderson’s Cello Concerto, which he premiered in February 2020 with the Orchestre National de France. His acclaimed discography includes two recent albums for Hyperion Records: the complete Bach solo suites and Shostakovich’s Cello Concertos, the latter of which was awarded the International Classical Music Award in 2021. More: harrisonparrott.com, albangerhardt.com.


Minnesota Orchestra Classical Concerts



Friday, January 13, 2023, 8 p.m. / Orchestra Hall

Saturday, January 14, 2023, 8 p.m. / Orchestra Hall


Minnesota Orchestra

Matthew Halls, conductor

Alban Gerhardt, piano


HAILSTORK Epitaph for a Man Who Dreamed (In memoriam: Martin Luther King, Jr.)
SCHUMANN Cello Concerto
MENDELSSOHN Symphony No. 3, Scottish


[Please note: Matthew Halls is replacing conductor Pablo Heras-Casado, who was originally slated to conduct this concert.]


Tickets: $20 to $89 [Free tickets available for young listeners ages 6 to 18, thanks to our Hall Pass program.]



Tickets and subscription packages can be purchased now at minnesotaorchestra.org or by calling 612-371-5656. For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662.

Details around COVID safety protocols can be found at minnesotaorchestra.org/safety

The Hall Pass program makes free tickets available for young listeners ages 6 to 18 for select Classical and Symphony in 60 concerts, and all kids under 18 for Family concerts. This program is sponsored by Cynthia and Jay Ihlenfeld. For more information, visit minnesotaorchestra.org/hallpass

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. 

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


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