Juanjo Mena Conducts The Leningrad Juanjo Mena Conducts The Leningrad
Sunday, March 25, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on February 2 & 3, 2018
Juanjo Mena, conductor
Javier Perianes, piano

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 21
Shostakovich: Symphony No. 7, Leningrad

Spanish conducting sensation Juanjo Mena, the recently appointed Principal Conductor of the May Festival, leads the Orchestra in Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7, Leningrad. Written in 1941 in passionate response to oppression and censorship, it remains one of the composer’s most enduring and powerful works. Spanish pianist Javier Perianes performs Mozart’s sublime Piano Concerto No. 21—known as the Elvira Madigan, this majestic work will be familiar to audiences.

Ravel's La Valse Ravel's La Valse
Sunday, April 1, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on February 16 & 17, 2018
Louis Langrée, conductor
Jeffrey Kahane, piano

Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1, Classical
Ravel: Piano Concerto in G Major
Stravinsky: Divertimento from The Fairy’s Kiss
Ravel: La Valse

Refresh your Valentine’s Day with Ravel’s wheeling La Valse, a whirling dervish of a waltz. The drama and delight continue with Ravel’s jazzy Piano Concerto in G Major, in the masterful hands of pianist Jeffrey Kahane, as well as scenes from Stravinsky’s ballet The Fairy’s Kiss (based on Hans Christian Anderson’s tale The Ice Maiden).

Strauss The Knight of the Rose Strauss The Knight of the Rose
Sunday, April 8, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on February 23 & 24, 2018
Juraj Valcuha, conductor
Simone Lamsma, violin

Strauss: Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks
Bernstein: Serenade, after Plato’s Symposium
Korngold: Suite from Much Ado About Nothing
Strauss: Suite from Der Rosenkavalier (“The Knight of the Rose”)

Explore the nature of love and life in this sparkling program book-ended by famous works by Richard Strauss: the music of the merry prankster Till Eulenspiegel, and the treasured Suite from Der Rosenkavalier (The Knight of the Rose). Violin star Simone Lamsma, described as “polished, expressive and intense” (Cleveland Plain Dealer), returns by popular demand to perform Bernstein’s Serenade to celebrate the composer’s 100th birthday.

Marek Janowski conducts German Masters Marek Janowski conducts German Masters
Sunday, April 15, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on March 2 & 3, 2018
Marek Janowski, conductor

Wagner: Siegfried Idyll
Wagner: Prelude und Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde
Bruckner: Symphony No. 4, Romantic

Marek Janowski, one of the most revered conductors in the world, leads a tour de force program that includes two works by Wagner: his Siegfried Idyll (originally a birthday gift to Wagner’s wife), and the best-loved moment from his Tristan und Isolde opera. Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4, nicknamed Romantic, is rife with lush imagery; listen for a glorious daybreak, proud knights on horseback, a hunting party and more.

Louis Langrée conducts Mozart + Strauss Louis Langrée conducts Mozart + Strauss
Sunday, April 22, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on March 23 & 24, 2018
Louis Langrée, conductor

Strauss: Metamorphosen
Mozart: Serenade No. 10, Gran Partita

The musical depth and intensity of the Orchestra is on full display in this program. Strauss’ Metamorphosen, featuring 23 solo string performers in an outpouring of tragic emotion, is considered a masterpiece of the string repertoire written toward the end of the composer’s life. Mozart’s deeply personal Gran Partita is a magnum opus showcasing a dozen wind instruments.

Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances
Sunday, April 29, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on April 6 & 7, 2018
James Gaffigan, conductor
Inon Barnatan, piano

Enrico Chapela: World Premiere
Barber: Piano Concerto
Rachmaninoff: Symphonic Dances

Barber earned a Pulitzer Prize for his Piano Concerto, performed here by Inon Barnatan, whom The New York Times has called “one of the most admired pianists of his generation.” The optimistic Barber pairs beautifully with the Russian romanticism of Rachmaninoff’s beloved Symphonic Dances, all under the baton of the esteemed James Gaffigan.

Prokofiev + Beethoven Prokofiev + Beethoven
Sunday, May 6, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on April 14 & 15, 2018
Louis Langrée, conductor
Karen Gomyo, violin

Pierre Jalbert: World Premiere
Prokofiev: Violin Concerto No. 1
Beethoven: Symphony No. 4

We continue to glimpse Beethoven’s influence on the future of music through the prism of this multi-year symphony cycle. Beethoven’s Symphony No. 4, a work of infectious joy, will get a modern-day response in a world premiere commission by Pierre Jalbert. Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 1 inspires the imagination of the listener, and features Karen Gomyo, a violinist of “real musical command, vitality, brilliance and intensity” (Chicago Tribune).

Bernstein Centennial Bernstein Centennial
Sunday, May 13, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on April 20 & 21, 2018
Cristian Macelaru, conductor
Jean-Yves Thibaudet, piano

Bernstein: Three Dance Episodes from On the Town
Gershwin: Piano Concerto
Ives: Three Places in New England
Bernstein: Divertimento

The music of American masters takes center stage along with the commanding keyboard technique and incredible artistry of Cincinnati favorite, pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, in Gershwin’s jazzy Piano Concerto. The 100th birthday celebration of the legendary composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein will be heard around the world and on the Music Hall stage with two of his most famous works for orchestra.

Baroque Masterworks Baroque Masterworks
Sunday, May 20, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on May 5 & 6, 2018
Harry Bicket, conductor
Iestyn Davies, countertenor

Rameau: Suite from Platée
Handel: Arias from Partenope
Handel: Concerto Grosso in A Major
Handel: Arias from Rinaldo
Rameau: Suite from Les Boréades

Baroque specialist Harry Bicket conducts a tour of some of the Baroque era’s finest works. Handel’s Concerto Grosso is a pinnacle of the Baroque form, featuring many soloists from within the orchestra. This program’s unforgettable collection of Baroque vocal music, starring international sensation countertenor Iestyn Davies, includes an array of Handel’s best-loved arias and two ornate suites from French master Jean-Philippe Rameau.

Brahms + Beethoven Brahms + Beethoven
Sunday, May 27, 2018 at 8:00 pm
Originally performed on May 11 & 12, 2018
Louis Langrée, conductor
James Ehnes, violin

Schumann: Overture to Die Braut von Messina (“The Bride of Messina”)
Brahms: Violin Concerto
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7

The Music Hall grand opening season closes with a flourish of musical fireworks. Beethoven’s jubilant Symphony No. 7 was an instant success, further solidifying his stature among his musical heirs, Schumann and Brahms. Schumann’s lesser-known and eloquent overture to Die Braut von Messina (The Bride of Messina) sets the stage for Brahms’ romantic Violin Concerto, featuring the “effusively lyrical” (The Guardian) violinist James Ehnes.