Update browser for a secure Minnesota Orchestra experience

It looks like you may be using a web browser version that we don't support. Make sure you're using the most recent version of your browser, or try using of these supported browsers, to get the full Minnesota Orchestra experience: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Edge.

Inside the Music

Powerful Music Can Be New

Music is at the heart of your experience at Orchestra Hall, and during the Minnesota Orchestra’s 2021-22 season, we are excited to expand our repertoire by bringing a variety of extraordinary works to Orchestra Hall for the very first time—from brand-new world premieres to older works that we are pleased to introduce to our audience.

We are intentionally building concert programs that feature voices and new ideas that are new to us. Here are just a few of the many that we look forward to performing for you!

Jessie Montgomery: Banner 

Sep 23 and 24

Jessie Montgomery asks us: “What does an anthem for the 21st century sound like in today’s multi-cultural environment?” Her answer includes individual voices interacting with a unified ensemble through fragments of music from The Star-Spangled Banner, the Mexican national anthem, protest songs, Puerto Rican melodies, folk songs and more, blending together the musical icons of a diversified world.

Kaija Saariaho: Aile du songe (Wing of the Dream), Flute Concerto

Sep 30, Oct 1 and 2

Performed by flute player Lorna McGhee in her Minnesota Orchestra solo debut, Kaija Saariaho’s Flute Concerto speaks musically of shadows, landscapes and the wonders of a bird in flight.

Valerie Coleman: Umoja

Sep 30, Oct 1 and 2

Valerie Coleman’s Umoja, which exists in several versions for vocal and instrumental ensembles, is a stirring anthem that draws its title from the Swahili word for “unity.” Coleman states: “Now more than ever, Umoja has to ring as a strong and beautiful anthem for the world we live in today.”

Unsuk Chin: subito con forza 

Oct 29 and 30

To mark last year’s occasion of Ludwig van Beethoven’s 250th birthday, Unsuk Chin composed subito con forza, inspired by the conversation books that helped Beethoven communicate in person as his hearing diminished. Brief, visceral and powerful, it includes many references to Beethoven’s music—hidden and overt. 

Ulysses Kay: Suite from The Quiet One

Nov 12 and 13

Ulysses Kay’s suite of music from the 1948 documentary The Quiet One, which follows a troubled young boy and his experience at a New York reform school, distills the film’s themes of joy, fear, crises and hope with inward-looking, gently melodic music that is inherently soloistic.

Unsuk Chin: Frontispiece

Feb 11 and 12

Frontispiece is a stunning soundscape, filled with creative subtleties, improvisation, unexpected harmonics, allusions and colors.

Vivan Fung: Aqua

April 28, 29 and 30

When architecture inspires music, edges and curves and textures weave together and take shape to create something stunning and new. Vivian Fung’s Aqua is such an example, an orchestral work inspired by the 82-story Aqua Tower in Chicago. 

Qigang Chen: L’Eloignement

May 13 and 14

Qigang Chen’s poignant L’Eloignement for String Orchestra was inspired by a Chinese proverb about the vital force of renewal and rebirth. 

Joel Thompson: Seven Last Words of the Unarmed

May 19, 20 and 21

Joel Thompson’s Seven Last Words of the Unarmed remembers the lives of Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, Eric Garner, Kenneth Chamberlain, Amadou Diallo and John Crawford—African American men each killed by police or by authority figures. Along with the Orchestra, this performance will feature singers from the Minnesota Chorale and other Twin Cities choral partners.

Do you love exploring new music?

Save the date for our annual MusicMakers concert on Friday, May 6, 2022, featuring an entire program of new works by some of today’s most exciting emerging orchestral composerseach of whom will introduce their music onstage—with Music Director Osmo Vänskä conducting.