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Beethoven Symphony No. 5

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Berlioz, the most inventive orchestral composer of his age, poured all the thrill and romance of the Eternal City into his Roman Carnival Overture. Boisterous dance music and swooning love songs bring this raucous festival to life. Where Berlioz piece is boisterous, Prokofiev’s Fifth Piano Concerto is coy like a cat, wriggling out of every preconception and cliché as it charts an original path through the minefield of history. Finally, Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony is a wholly different creature, one with forward drive and a unyielding fidelity. This marvel of symphonic craft submits its bold message with utter frankness, and yet there are always new subtleties waiting to be discovered. 

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Sunday, 18 November, 2018 2:00PM

Rachmaninov Piano Concerto No. 2

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For all the virtuosic summits and grand melodic gestures, Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto is shockingly intimate, as if we are peering into the private diary of this vulnerable composer. The young Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili holds nothing back as she returns to Seattle to share her courageous interpretations to the deeply emotional music of Rachmaninov. In Scheherazade, Rimsky-Korsakov breathes sensuous new life into the storied pages of One Thousand and One Nights, proving just how vast the world of sound can be in the hands of such an inventive orchestrator.

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Thursday, 29 November, 2018 7:30PM

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Saturday, 1 December, 2018 8:00PM

Brahms Symphony No. 3

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With these brilliant composers, every musical idea is a treasure box of inspiration. In Brahms’ Third Symphony, the care and attention lavished on each step and leap magnifies small gestures into momentous statements. Sofia Gubaidulina’s spiritual and resonant Offertorium has become a contemporary classic and now we get to hear why it has made such an impact.  When it comes to finding new life within old music, Bach lights the way as always, as heard in his glorious harmonization of a traditional hymn. 

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Thursday, 17 January, 2019 7:30PM

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Friday, 18 January, 2019 8:00PM

Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 3

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Surprises abound when thoughtful musicians indulge in a bit of mischief and mayhem! The first symphony that Shostakovich composed as a frisky teenager crackles with dark humor and cheeky irony. Pianist Jonathan Biss, a virtuoso of the highest order, approaches his craft with a scholar’s curiosity and a raconteur’s knack for captivating the minds and ears of his audience. He asked Caroline Shaw, the multi-talented composer and performer who became the youngest ever winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 2013, to compose this concerto as a response to Beethoven, an endeavor that calls for a healthy balance of sanctity and whimsy.

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Thursday, 31 January, 2019 7:30PM

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Friday, 1 February, 2019 12:00PM

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Saturday, 2 February, 2019 8:00PM

Prokofiev Symphony No. 7

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In the last major work of his life, Prokofiev filled his Seventh Symphony with music of disarming innocence and simplicity. He began composing it for a children’s radio program, and even as it expanded into a full-throated symphony it retained a childlike sense of wonder. Sibelius, the proud son of Finland, channeled his austere Nordic sensibilities into his Violin Concerto, which spans from an icy tremble to a pounding dance once dubbed the “polonaise for polar bears.” Don’t miss the return of violinist Aleksey Semenenko, who “played with deep sensitivity and chamber-like focus” in his last Seattle Symphony appearance (The Seattle Times).

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Thursday, 14 February, 2019 7:30PM

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Saturday, 16 February, 2019 8:00PM

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