SEATTLE SYMPHONY ANNOUNCES 2010–2011 SEASON, GERARD SCHWARZ’S FINAL SEASON AS MUSIC DIRECTOR
FOR RELEASE Thursday, February 04, 2010
2010 – 2011 Season Highlights Include
Opening Night Gala Honoring Maestro Schwarz to Feature Son Julian Schwarz Performing World Premiere of Jones’ Cello Concerto; Mezzo-Soprano Denyce Graves in Mahler’s “Songs of a Wayfarer” and Schwarz’s Own Work, The Human Spirit
Guest Artists Include Yo-Yo Ma, Lang Lang, Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman,
and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
Lynn Harrell and Alan Hovhaness Celebration Honors Hovhaness’ 100th Birthday in 2011
Gerard Schwarz Leads Beethoven & Wine Festival Opening Week
Opera Highlights Festival to Feature Rising Opera Stars
Seattle Symphony Celebrates the Tenth Anniversary of the Watjen Concert Organ
New Friday Night “Rush Hour” Series Responds to Audience Interest
with Earlier Start Times and Shorter Concert Format
New Multimedia Experience “Beyond the Score®” to Debut in Seattle
Celebrate Asia! Returns as Part of New Three-Concert “Around the World” Series;
Series Highlights Music and Cultures of South America and the Middle East
Schwarz to Conduct Mahler’s “Resurrection” Symphony as Season Finale
Acclaimed Guest Artists
Pianists Yefim Bronfman, Marc-André Hamelin, André Watts, Stephen Hough, Peter Serkin, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Vladimir Feltsman and William Wolfram; violinists Itzhak Perlman, Elmar Oliveira, Gil Shaham, Vadim Repin, Leila Josefowicz and Dmitry Sitkovetsky; violist Pinchas Zukerman; cellists Yo-Yo Ma and Lynn Harrell; and clarinetist Jon Manasse
Distinguished Artists in Recital
Solo Recitals given by Pianists András Schiff and Lang Lang; Pianist Gabriela Montero performs with Cellist Gautier Capuçon
Debuts Include Pablo Heras-Casado, Riccardo Frizza, Teodor Currentzis, Mark Wigglesworth, Pietari Inkinen, Jakub Hruša, Ton Koopman, Michael Francis, Krzysztof Urbanski and Julian Kuerti; Returning Conductors are Robert Spano, Stéphane Denève, Douglas Boyd, Leonard Slatkin, Gary Thor Wedow and Nicholas McGegan
Seattle, WA – Music Director Gerard Schwarz and President & Executive Director Thomas Philion today announced the 2010–2011 Seattle Symphony Season, which marks Schwarz’s final season as Music Director. Following the 2010–2011 season, Schwarz will become Conductor Laureate.
Special celebratory activities begin with the Opening Night Concert and Gala on September 11, when Schwarz’s son, cellist Julian Schwarz, performs the World Premiere of a Cello Concerto composed by Seattle Symphony Composer in Residence Samuel Jones. Also on the program is mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves, who will perform Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (“Songs of a Wayfarer”). The Orchestra additionally performs the World Premiere of the orchestral version of Schwarz’s own The Human Spirit, performed by Seattle Symphony and local youth choirs Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle. Schwarz’s arrangement of R. Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier Suite concludes the special gala program.
In his 26 years as Music Director, Maestro Schwarz has led Seattle Symphony to international prominence, with more than 125 recordings, 12 Grammy nominations and numerous awards. In addition to the standard repertoire, he has championed the work of American composers and contemporary composers from around the world.
Schwarz remarked, “This next season is very special to me because of my tremendous regard and affection for our Orchestra, our entire community and the extraordinary things we’ve accomplished together. I’m so proud of the way our Orchestra has become a world-class ensemble, and of course I’m very proud of Benaroya Hall, one of the best concert halls anywhere in the world. Many of the guest artists coming this season to perform with us are not only incredible artists, but some of my very dearest friends, and this will truly be a season to remember.”
“Our community owes the outstanding artistic achievements of our great Orchestra in large part to the remarkable work done by Gerard Schwarz, and we hope that everyone will take part in the exciting performances we have planned for his final season as Music Director,” said Philion. “We also extend our heartfelt thanks to our audiences and our donors, who make these great performances possible. Although we are excited about our search for a new Music Director and what that means for our future, Schwarz’s legacy will be a very hard act to follow and it is a true honor to work with him.”
Additional highlights of the 2010–2011 season include a Lynn Harrell and Alan Hovhaness Celebration. As part of this festival, two programs will be presented in collaboration with the University of Washington. In addition to the cello concertos of Dvorák and Elgar, performed by Harrell, the Seattle Symphony and University of Washington Wind Ensemble will perform several important works by Alan Hovhaness, a composer Schwarz greatly admires. In the last decades of his life, Hovhaness made Seattle his home, and two of the works programmed reflect his love of mountains, including Symphony No. 2, Mysterious Mountain, and Symphony No. 50, Mount St. Helens.
The debut of the magnificent, 4,490-pipe Watjen Concert Organ in Benaroya Hall took place in 2000. Ten years after that first performance, Schwarz will again lead the Seattle Symphony in Saint-Saens’ “Organ” Symphony as part of the Masterworks Season. The Fluke/Gabelein Organ Recital series continues in its tenth season and an orchestral program on the Symphony Specials series titled “An Organ Celebration” is planned.
Seattle Symphony has developed three new series that will launch in the 2010–2011 season to better meet the needs of today’s changing audiences: Beyond the Score, Rush Hour and Around the World. Of these news series, Philion comments, “Our audiences are very excited about classical music. They know when and how they want to experience it, and we are responding with more variety and new ideas to keep them engaged.”
The Musically Speaking series, with its strong educational component, has evolved this season to take advantage of a special opportunity to show exciting multimedia presentations as part of the concert experience. Newly titled Beyond the Score®, this series now delivers engaging video content originally created by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on a large screen above the stage. The multimedia presentation takes place during the first half of the performance, with the second half of the performance presented in a traditional orchestral format.
The Popular Classics series, with its earlier start time and familiar repertoire, has been replaced by the new Rush Hour series. The Rush Hour series, comprised of two packages of three concerts each, responds to audience interest in earlier start times and a shorter concert format.
Seattle Symphony is also excited to launch the new three-concert Around the World series, a musical exploration into various cultural crossroads. The series includes the annual Celebrate Asia! concert, as well as Caminos del Inka: A Musical Journey through the Incan Trail with guest conductor Miguel Harth-Bedoya. Guitar fans will note that famed guitarists Sérgio and Odair Assad appear on the series this season, celebrating their heritage with music from both the Middle East and Latin America.
Opening week will also feature the return of the Beethoven & Wine Festival. Following its highly successful introduction last season, which resulted in almost 2,000 new patrons, Gerard Schwarz will again lead three festival performances in the week leading up to the Opening Night Gala. These all-Beethoven performances are shorter, with no intermission, and include pre-concert wine tastings featuring Northwest wines. Building on the success of the social aspect of the Beethoven & Wine Festival, the Basically Baroque series was augmented by pre-concert wine tastings and was renamed the Baroque & Northwest Wine series in the 2009–2010 season.
MASTERWORKS SEASON HIGHLIGHTS
Music Director Gerard Schwarz will conduct the Orchestra in eight of the Masterworks Season’s 18-week schedule, along with two additional weeks of celebratory special programming and several stand-alone performances. Of special note are the “Mahler’s ‘Resurrection’ Symphony” season finale, and the “Lynn Harrell and Alan Hovhaness Celebration.” The latter is a collaboration with the University of Washington and includes the cello concertos of Elgar and Dvorák along with important works by Alan Hovhaness, a composer greatly admired by Schwarz. Additional season highlights under Schwarz include Brahms’ Symphony No. 3; Dvorák’s Symphony No. 7; Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5, “Emperor”; Borodin’s Symphony No. 1; Bruckner’s Symphony No. 6; Saint-Saëns’ Symphony No. 3; and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 10.
Distinguished Guest Conductors on the Masterworks Season
Seattle Symphony welcomes ten guest conductors to the Benaroya Hall stage for the Masterworks series performances. Making their Seattle Symphony debuts will be 31-year-old Spanish conductor Pablo Heras-Casado, leading Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 3 and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1; Italian conductor Riccardo Frizza, who conducted Seattle Opera’s recent Aida and will also conduct Falstaff in Seattle, conducting Bizet’s Symphony No. 1 and Ravel’s Boléro; Teodor Currentzis, Music Director of the Novosibirsk State Opera and Orchestra in Russia and Principal Guest Conductor of the Bolshoi Theater, leading Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5; Mark Wigglesworth, former Music Director of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, leading Rachmaninov’s Symphony No. 3; Finnish conductor Pietari Inkinen, Music Director of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, conducting Sibelius’ Symphony No. 7 and Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra; and Czech conductor Jakub Hruša, Music Director and Chief Conductor of the Prague Philharmonia, leading Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 1 and Haydn’s Symphony No. 60.
Returning guest conductors include Robert Spano, Music Director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, conducting Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Stravinsky’s Symphony in Three Movements; Stéphane Denève, Music Director of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, leading selections from Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet; Douglas Boyd, Principal Guest Conductor of the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and City of London Sinfonia, conducting Brahms’ Symphony No. 4; and Leonard Slatkin, Music Director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, leading Gershwin’s Concerto in F and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5.
Guest Artist Debuts on the Masterworks Season
Guest artists making their Seattle Symphony orchestral debuts on the Masterworks Season will be pianists Stephen Hough performing Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 and Jean-Yves Thibaudet performing Gershwin’s Concerto in F; soprano Angela Meade performing Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, “Resurrection,” and mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor performing Lieberson’s Neruda Songs.
Artists Returning to the Masterworks Season
Guest artists who will perform under Schwarz next season include pianists Yefim Bronfman performing Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2, André Watts performing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5, “Emperor,” and William Wolfram performing Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in A major; violinists Elmar Oliveira performing Kernis’ Air and Bloch’s Baal Shem (Three Pictures of Chassidic Life), Gil Shaham performing Bartók’s Violin Concerto No. 2, and Vadim Repin performing Lalo’s Symphonie espagnole; and violist Pinchas Zukerman performing Telemann’s Viola Concerto in G major and Berlioz’s Harold in Italy.
Guest artists who will appear with guest conductors include violinists Leila Josefowicz performing Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 and Dmitry Sitkovetsky performing Britten’s Violin Concerto; Seattle Symphony Concertmaster Maria Larionoff performing Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto; Seattle Symphony Principal Second Violinist Elisa Barston performing Philip Glass’ Violin Concerto; pianists Marc-André Hamelin performing Rhapsody in Blue and Ravel’s Concerto for Left Hand; Peter Serkin performing Mozart’s Rondo for Piano in D major and Messiaen’s Oiseaux exotiques (“Exotic Birds”); and Vladimir Feltsman and Seattle Symphony Principal Trumpet David Gordon performing Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No. 1.
ADDITIONAL SUBSCRIPTION SERIES PERFORMANCES
The above Masterworks Season encompasses the Orchestra’s core programming of symphonic masterpieces. Additional subscription series described below include Beyond the Score®, Distinguished Artists, Symphony Specials, Baroque & Northwest Wine, Mainly Mozart, Visiting Orchestras, Rush Hour, Fluke/Gabelein Organ Recital, Around the World, Musician Chamber and Seattle Pops. Popular Culture series performances will be announced at a later date to capture the most current touring acts.
Beyond the Score® Series
Originally created by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Beyond the Score® will be presented as a three-concert series that explores classical music by pairing the live concert experience with engaging multimedia presentations. Each program focuses on one of classical music’s timeless works and is comprised of two components: before intermission, the conductor will explore the history and context of a masterwork through musical and visual examples. After intermission, the audience will hear a complete performance of the music, with their experience enhanced by their newfound knowledge.
Guest conductor Michael Francis leads the first Beyond the Score® concert, exploring the impressionistic wonder of Debussy’s La Mer. Stephen Stubbs leads the orchestra and Associate Concertmaster Emma McGrath in Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Former Seattle Symphony Associate Conductor Christian Knapp returns to Seattle for an in-depth look at Dvorák’s Symphony No. 9, “From the New World.”
Distinguished Artists Series
This three-concert series brings world-renowned musicians to Seattle to perform the great works of the solo and chamber literature. The Distinguished Artists series opens with pianist András Schiff, performing an all-Schumann program, and continues with a duo-recital of Rachmaninov and Prokofiev performed by pianist Gabriela Montero and cellist Gautier Capuçon. International piano sensation Lang Lang completes the series with a solo recital.
Symphony Specials Series
The series opens in October with Music Director Gerard Schwarz conducting a program of favorite organ works performed by Joseph Adam and Carole Terry on the Watjen Concert Organ. The program includes Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor, Poulenc’s Organ Concerto in G minor and selections from Widor’s Symphony No. 6 in G minor. In January, Schwarz will lead the Orchestra and Seattle Symphony Chorale in Mozart’s Requiem, along with the composer’s Horn Concerto No. 2, performed by Seattle Symphony Principal Horn John Cerminaro. Performers in Mozart’s Requiem include soprano Hanan Alattar, mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, tenor Ross Hauck, and baritone Weston Hurt. The series concludes with Gerard Schwarz conducting a “viola spectacular” featuring Pinchas Zukerman. The program includes Telemann’s Viola Concerto in G major, Brahms’ Serenade No. 2 and Berlioz’s Harold in Italy.
Baroque & Northwest Wine Series
The Baroque & Northwest Wine series, with performances on Friday and Saturday evenings, pairs the rich music of the Baroque era with distinctive regional wines. Each evening begins with pre-concert wine tastings an hour before the concert. The series opens with Gerard Schwarz conducting Bach’s “Brandenburg” Concerto No. 1 and Orchestral Suite No. 1, as well as Handel’s Water Music Suite No. 2 and Concerto grosso in F major, Op. 6, No. 9, the latter arranged by Schwarz. Guest conductor Nicholas McGegan leads a program of music inspired by Cleopatra, including selections from Graun’s Cleopatra e Cesare, Hasse’s Marc’Antonio e Cleopatra, Handel’s Giulio Cesare and Matheson’s Cleopatra. The soloist on this program, soprano Isabel Bayrakdarian, is heard on the Grammy Award-winning soundtrack of the film The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. Also on the program is Handel’s Water Music Suite No. 2 and Concerto grosso in G major, Op. 1. Guest conductor and harpsichordist Ton Koopman concludes the series with three works by C.P.E. Bach: two symphonies for String Orchestras (in G major and D major) and the Double Harpsichord Concerto in F major, for which Tini Mathot will join Koopman at the keyboard. Also on the program is J.S. Bach’s Sinfonia from Cantata 42 and Telemann’s Tafelmusik III.
Mainly Mozart Series
The Mainly Mozart series will open with guest conductor Michael Francis leading Haydn’s “Farewell” Symphony and Copland’s classically-inspired Clarinet Concerto performed by clarinetist Jon Manasse. The program also includes Mozart’s Symphony No. 33 and Schnittke’s Moz-Art à la Haydn. Also on the Mainly Mozart series, Schwarz will lead the Orchestra and Seattle Symphony Chorale in Mozart’s Requiem, and the composer’s Horn Concerto No. 2, performed by Seattle Symphony Principal Horn John Cerminaro. Performers in Mozart’s Requiem include soprano Hanan Alattar, mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, tenor Ross Hauck, and baritone Weston Hurt. Guest conductor Krzysztof Urbanski rounds out the series by leading the orchestra in Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4, featuring violinist Alina Ibragimova, Mendelssohn’s The Hebrides and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8.
Visiting Orchestras Series
Each year, the Visiting Orchestras series brings world-renowned ensembles to Benaroya Hall’s stage. Kremerata Baltica with Gidon Kremer, leader and violin, will perform Bartók’s Divertimento, Schumann’s Cello Concerto (arranged for violin by the composer), and works by Arvo Pärt and Michael Nyman. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra will make its Benaroya Hall debut with Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 under the baton of conductor Zubin Mehta. In the final performance of the series, Bernard Labadie and Les Violons du Roy are joined by English tenor Ian Bostridge for arias by Scarlatti, Vivaldi, Caldara, Handel and Boyce. Also on the program are Handel’s Concerto grosso in D major, Op. 5, No. 6 and Geminiani’s Concerto grosso in D minor, Op. 5, No. 12.
Rush Hour Series
The brand new Rush Hour series comprises two three-concert series of familiar orchestral works on Fridays, featuring an early start-time of 7 p.m. and a shorter, no-intermission format. Series A opens in October with Gerard Schwarz conducting Foote’s Francesca da Rimini and Dvorák’s Symphony No. 7. Guest Conductor Pablo Heras-Casado makes his Seattle Symphony debut leading Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 3 and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No.1, the latter featuring Stephen Hough as soloist. Series A concludes with Stéphane Denève’s return to Benaroya Hall to conduct Roussel’s Bacchus et Ariane and selections form Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet.
Rush Hour’s Series B begins in February with Douglas Boyd conducting Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun and Brahms’ Symphony No. 4. Conductor Teodor Currentzis makes his Seattle Symphony debut with a program of Borodin’s Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5. Mark Wigglesworth leads the final concert of the series, a performances of Ravel’s ”Mother Goose” suite and Rachmaninov’s Symphony No. 3.
Around the World Series
In 2010–2011, Seattle Symphony presents a new series celebrating the art music of varying cultures. In October, conductor Miguel Harth-Bedoya leads the orchestra in Caminos del Inka: A Musical Journey through the Incan Trail, a program featuring music by Golijov, Piazzolla and Villa-Lobos that also includes a multimedia presentation of images from the Incan region. January brings the third-annual Celebrate Asia! concert, a performance conducted by Carolyn Kuan that includes both Eastern and Western musical traditions. Finally, Grammy Award–winning guitar duo Sérgio and Odair Assad return to Benaroya Hall to perform music from both Brazil and the Middle East with the Orchestra, including Sérgio’s new Concerto for Two Guitars and Orchestra.
Fluke/Gabelein Organ Recital Series
This well-established series places three distinguished organists before Benaroya Hall’s 4,490-pipe, 83-stop Watjen Concert Organ. Internationally renowned French organist Olivier Latry performs works by Liszt, Dupré and Duruflé. Seattle Symphony Resident Organist Joseph Adam returns to perform works by J.S. Bach, Vierne and Widow. American soloist Paul Jacobs concludes the series with music by Boulanger, Liszt and Reger.
Musician Chamber Series
In this four-concert series, musicians of the Seattle Symphony and guests present chamber works in the Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall. The series begins in October with a performance of Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale, Debussy’s Sonata for Flute, Viola and Harp, and Jolivet’s Rhapsodie à sept. In February, members of the Orchestra’s string section will perform Schubert’s Piano Trio No. 2, Britten’s Lachrymae and Shostakovich’s String Quartet No. 3. April’s program includes Villa-Lobos’ String Trio, R. Strauss’ Violin Sonata in E-flat major and Prokofiev’s Violin Sonata No. 2. Finally, the series concludes with a program of chamber music from Eastern Europe, including Enescu’s Impressions d’enfance, Dvorák’s Piano Trio in F minor, and two works by Bartók, his Contrasts for Violin, Clarinet and Piano and his Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion.
Seattle Pops Series
The Seattle Pops series, under the direction of Principal Pops Conductor Marvin Hamlisch, begins in September with Live and Let Die: A Tribute to Paul McCartney. Conducted by Martin Hermann, this performance combines the power of pop with the beauty of symphonic orchestration to bring a special concert experience to Paul McCartney and Beatles fans of all ages. The series continues in December with the return of the Holiday Pops Spectacular with Cirque de la Symphonie. Back by popular demand, the whole family will enjoy seasonal favorites accompanied by Cirque’s acrobats, jugglers, dancers and mimes. For the March performances, Hamlisch Plays Hamlisch, Marvin will lead his own award-winning hits. In April, the Dukes of Dixieland brings traditional jazz and Dixieland into the 21st century, weaving strands of pop, gospel and country with authentic New Orleans sounds. These performances do not include Seattle Symphony. The season concludes with Hamlisch again at the podium for The Barbra Streisand Songbook. Vocalist Julie Budd joins Hamlisch for a tribute to the famous Streisand sound.
Subscription renewals and purchases are available online at www.seattlesymphony.org.
Online subscription renewals are fully automated. Subscribers will receive a unique login name which allows them to see their entire order on the Seattle Symphony website. Subscribers can request changes to their subscriptions and add options ranging from purchasing pre-paid parking to requesting wheelchair accessible seating. Changes to the order will be made instantly, and changes in seating will be made separately, after the subscription renewal deadline has passed. Season brochures are being mailed to current Symphony subscribers who will have until March 13, 2010, to renew their seats or request seating changes. To receive a 2010–2011 season brochure, please call the Seattle Symphony Ticket Office at (206) 215-4747 or write to Seattle Symphony Ticket Office, Attn: 2010–2011 Season Brochure Request, P.O. Box 2108, Seattle, WA 98111-2108. Subscription renewals will also be accepted in person at the Ticket Office at the corner of Third Ave. and Union St., by phone at (206) 215-4747, by mail at the address above, or by fax at (206) 215-4748.
Non-subscription presentations are exclusively available to Seattle Symphony subscribers before they go on sale to the public in August.
The 2010–2011 Season will begin with a return of the highly successful Beethoven and Wine Festival. Featuring pre-concert wine tastings, festival is comprised of three shorter, no-intermission concerts conducted by Gerard Schwarz. The programs include Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, featuring Augustin Hadelich, who is familiar to Seattle audiences through his performances with Seattle Chamber Music Festival. The all-Beethoven festival will also include Symphonies Nos. 2, 5 and 8, excerpts from The Creatures of Prometheus, and the Third Piano Concerto featuring local teen soloist Charlie Albright.
Gerard Schwarz’s final season as Music Director of Seattle Symphony’s will be celebrated at the Opening Night Concert & Gala. Schwarz will lead mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves in Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (“Songs of a Wayfarer”), and his son, cellist Julian Schwarz, in the world premiere of Seattle Symphony Composer in Residence Samuel Jones’ Cello Concerto. Also on the program is Schwarz’s composition The Human Spirit, featuring the Orchestra and members of the Northwest Choirs, and his arrangement of R. Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier suite. Special gala fundraising packages are available for an additional charge and include cocktails, dinner, dancing and champagne intermission. Gala packages must be reserved through the Special Events Office at (206) 215-4834.
In October, A Prairie Home Companion and The Writer’s Almanac host Garrison Keillor returns to Benaroya Hall for a one-night performance with Seattle Symphony. December sees Gerard Schwarz conducting cellist Yo-Yo Ma in Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1, on a concert that also includes Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet Fantasy-Overture and his Suite No. 4, “Mozartiana”.
In January, legendary Grammy and Emmy Award–winning violinist Itzhak Perlman returns to Seattle for a one-night performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto, conducted by Julian Kuerti, who makes his Seattle Symphony debut. The program also includes music by two Czech composers: Smetana’s Moldau from Má Vlast and Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8.
Additionally in January, Seattle Symphony presents a two-night Opera Highlights Festival, led by conductor Gary Thor Wedow and featuring rising opera stars. The first night will also feature the Seattle Symphony Chorale and will celebrate some of opera’s most rousing moments, including Verdi’s drinking song from La Traviata and the Triumphal Scene from his Aida. The second program will explore the lighter side of opera with Offenbach’s Can-can, and selections from Strauss’ Die Fledermaus. These shorter programs are presented without intermission.
In celebration of Valentine’s Day, Michael Feinstein and his 17-piece band returns to Benaroya Hall for a stand-alone performance on February 14. He will be presenting The Sinatra Project, a tribute to the music of Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Nat “King” Cole. This concert is back by popular demand following the sold-out performance in July 2009.
Seattle Symphony’s holiday performances include a return of Holiday Pops with Cirque de la Symphonie. In this popular performance, Cirque’s acrobats, jugglers, dancers and mimes perform on stage while the Orchestra performs seasonal favorites led by Seattle Symphony’s Principal Pops Conductor, Marvin Hamlisch. Also returning is A Festival of Lessons & Carols performed by Northwest Boychoir and Vocalpoint! Seattle, conducted by Joseph Crnko. The Orchestra’s annual performance of Handel’s Messiah will be conducted by Gerard Schwarz. Joining the Orchestra and Seattle Symphony Chorale are soprano Dominique Labelle, mezzo-soprano Mary Phillips, tenor Michael Colvin and bass-baritone Charles Robert Austin.
The holiday season concludes with Seattle Symphony’s annual performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, “Choral,” on New Year’s Eve followed by an audience-wide celebration, featuring champagne, dessert, dancing and a countdown to 2011 with Schwarz. Performances of Beethoven’s Ninth will continue into January, featuring soprano Jane Eaglen, mezzo-soprano Nancy Maultsby, tenor Vinson Cole, baritone Clayton Brainerd and the Seattle Symphony Chorale. The performance also includes Wagner’s Siegfried Idyll.
EDUCATION, COMMUNITY PROGRAMS AND SOUNDBRIDGE
Seattle Symphony will continue to offer a dynamic season of concerts for young people, including the highly popular Tiny Tots offerings, designed for children from birth to age 5 and their families, in the Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall. The Gilman Family Discover Music series, consisting of orchestral performances designed for children age 5 to 12 and their families, takes place five times each year in the S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium. Details on these series will be announced in Spring 2010.
In addition to the above performances offered for families, the Orchestra annually performs concerts geared toward secondary school groups, and four Arts in Education concerts for 10,000 Seattle-area fifth graders. Seattle Symphony works with 190 schools in 26 districts. Seattle Symphony’s education and community programs are extensive and each year reach more than 100,000 people through a variety of programs tailored to meet the needs of various audiences, schools and communities.
One such project, the national award-winning ACCESS Project (Artistic and Cultural Community Engagement with Seattle Symphony) offers a combination of orchestra concerts in underserved schools and free public concerts in community centers, along with special school visits featuring young artists. The goal of the ACCESS Project is to make symphonic experiences available to all people in the community, providing diverse groups with opportunities to develop a lifelong relationship with symphonic music through Seattle Symphony. The ACCESS Project is an integral component of Seattle Symphony’s season programming each winter and spring. Concert details are announced in the fall.
Soundbridge Seattle Symphony Music Discovery Center
Seattle Symphony opened Soundbridge Seattle Symphony Music Discovery Center in Benaroya Hall in April 2001 and it continues as a successful and vibrant center for music education. The interactive facility is a “musical playroom” featuring dynamic hands-on exhibits, orchestral instruments for exploration,
a Listening Bar with more than 5,000 classical music works brought to each listener using streaming media, and a workshop/performance space that can be reserved for events, such as musical performances, private teacher recitals and birthday parties. The Science of Sound Wall, a popular exhibit, is also used heavily for instruction, as the material presented correlates to state and national science curriculum requirements. Soundbridge acts as both an exhibit, utilizing educational resources and Microsoft® technology, and as a classroom for people of all ages and levels of musical experience. Its mission is to inspire and nurture a love of symphonic music through active participation and exploration. Soundbridge hosts 20,000 visitors each year. Soundbridge has partnered with Studio3Music, one of the top Kindermusik® studios in the nation, to offer licensed Kindermusik® classes for young children. For more information, including schedules of classes and special events, visit www.soundbridge.org.
About Seattle Symphony
Seattle Symphony, presenting its 108th season in 2010–2011, has been under the artistic leadership of Music Director Gerard Schwarz since 1985. In 1998, the Orchestra began performing in the acoustically superb Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle. The Symphony is internationally recognized for its adventurous programming of contemporary works, its devotion to the classics, and its extensive recording history. Seattle Symphony has made more than 125 recordings, garnered 12 Grammy nominations and won two Emmy Awards. From September through July, the Symphony is heard live by more than 315,000 people. For more information on Seattle Symphony, visit www.seattlesymphony.org.
About Benaroya Hall
Benaroya Hall, home of Seattle Symphony, is Seattle’s first facility designed exclusively for symphonic music performances. Located on an entire city block in downtown Seattle, the Hall serves as a focal point of the city’s urban core. Benaroya Hall has two spaces for musical performances—the 2,500-seat S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium and the 540-seat Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall—and an underground parking garage. Benaroya Hall has received numerous awards, including a 2001 American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Honor Award for outstanding architecture. For additional information, including event listings and public tour schedules, please visit www.benaroyahall.org.
Support for Seattle Symphony’s 2010–2011 season is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Washington State Arts Commission, Mayor’s Office of Arts and Cultural Affairs,
ArtsFund, 4Culture and PONCHO
Programs and artists subject to change. Photos of Seattle Symphony and guest artists are available to the media on request.
Rosalie Contreras, (206) 215-4782
Elizabeth Ferlic, (206) 215-4714
Kirshbaum Demler & Associates, Inc., (212) 222-4843