Unfortunately I never had the opportunity to meet Eric Metcalf—a young man of exceptional promise whose life was cut short by a tragic rock climbing accident in July 2012. As ... More »
About Us: Press Releases
|North Carolina Symphony Announces 2009-10 Season, Concerts, Guest Artists|
|Posted: February 15, 2009|
RALEIGH, NC—Inspired programming, exceptional guest artists and repertoire that displays the muscle of the orchestra in an expansive span of textures and moods mark the North Carolina Symphony’s outstanding 2009-10 season. “There is an architecture to the season as a whole,” says Music Director Grant Llewellyn. “We are striving for a balance of classicism and modernism showcasing the orchestra’s extraordinary cross-section of talent at its best.”
The Duke Medicine Raleigh Classical Series opens September 25 & 26, 2009 with powerful works by great German and Hungarian composers and a theme of Life and Death. Mezzo-soprano Catherine Wyn-Rogers, new to Raleigh audiences but a mainstay of the European concert stage will be the featured soloist in Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder. “The work suits a rich, mature voice like hers very well,” says Llewellyn. Also on the opening program are Wagner’s A Faust Overture, Liszt’s Mephisto Waltz No. 1 and Richard Strauss’s eloquent tone poem, Death and Transfiguration.
Other highlights from the season’s repertoire include some of the most thrilling works of the orchestral canon including Berlioz’s Symphony fantastique, Bruckner’s Symphony No. 8, Brahms’s Symphony No. 4, Sibelius’s Symphony No. 4 and all four of Bach’s great orchestral suites. Audiences will hear piano concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Poulenc, Rachmaninoff and Lowell Liebermann, as well as concertos for violin and cello. Along with the North Carolina Symphony Chorus and a cast of extraordinary soloists, the Symphony will also undertake Haydn’s extraordinary work The Creation. John Mauceri, whose semi-staged performance of Shostakovich’s film score for Hamlet was a highlight of the 2007-08 season, will be back with a wonderful program featuring Hollywood film music by Schoenberg, Korngold, R. Strauss, Herrmann and John Williams. The Classical and Pops season will share a two-week festival of Latin music; the Classical concert features music by Chavez, Revueltas, Ginastera and others, along with guest artists Tiempo Libre. The season concludes with a truly exciting program, A Night at the Opera featuring the delightful mezzo-soprano Phyllis Pancella and baritone Steven Powell, who wowed Symphony audiences in the fall 2007 production of The Marriage of Figaro.
As always, the Duke Medicine Classical Series will feature exceptional guest artists, including several who will be introduced to North Carolina classical audiences for the first time. In addition to Wyn-Rogers, soprano Dominque Labelle, Maori bass Jonathan Lemalu, pianists Jean-Phillipe Collard, Pascal Rogé, Peter Donohoe and Yuja Wang, violinist Kurt Nikkanen and Cuban ensemble Tiempo Libre all make their North Carolina Symphony Duke Medicine Classical Series debuts next season.
Audiences will delight in the return of the electrifying violinist Leila Josefowicz, pianists Garrick Ohlsson and William Wolfram and cellist Lynn Harrell, as well as well as solo appearances by the orchestra’s superbly talented principal trumpet Paul Randall.
Highly regarded guest conductors Alexander Mickelthwate, John Mauceri, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Andrew Litton and Andrea Quinn will lead the orchestra in October, November, January and March.
Widely considered one of classical music’s great emerging young talents, Mickelthwate is Music Director of the Winnipeg Symphony while John Mauceri is former Artistic Director of the Hollywood Bowl and now Chancellor of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Carlos Miguel Prieto is the dynamic young music director of Mexico’s Xalapa Symphony. Andrew Litton and Andrea Quinn are both known to North Carolina Symphony audiences; Litton led the orchestra in 2007; Andrea Quinn was a finalist in the 2002-04 music director search.
The Fidelity Investments Pops Series will open September 18-19 with Broadway’s High School Hits featuring Pops King Erich Kunzel conducting a tribute to Broadway’s fascination with high school, including hits from High School Musical 1 & 2, Grease, Footloose and more. The Series will also feature the smoothly amazing Johnny Mathis, arguably one of the greatest Pops stars of all time, as well as kickin’ Mariachi Cobre, the Pops Series’ contribution to the Latin Festival, with all the great rhythms of a traditional Mexican Mariachi Band. An evening of Hollywood’s award-winning film scores in Silver Screen and Red Carpet, and the beloved Holiday Pops concerts, this season featuring the Empire Brass and the Concert Singers of Cary, complete this exciting season. Llewellyn concludes the season with Our Favorite Things, a concert featuring some of his favorite music, from Baroque to Broadway and probably including a Welsh rugby song or two. Featured vocalists are Phyllis Pancella and Steven Powell. The audience will even participate by choosing two of the program’s selection online and by instant feedback at the concert!
Chapel Hill, Durham, Southern Pines, Fayetteville, New Bern and Wilmington offer performances that include the same great programs and artists that make up the Duke Medicine Classical Series and Friday Favorites Series, as well as some programs and guest artists heard only in those communities. “Our relationship with these communities continues to be successful,” says Llewellyn. “Taking our music to audiences around the state and meeting North Carolinians in other cities is not only enjoyable for us, but is at the heart of our mission to serve the people of our state.”
Friday Favorites, the Symphony’s popular weekday series, again includes three 75-minute daytime concerts. North Carolina Symphony conductors will give insight from the stage into the music they love.
Grant Llewellyn’s October Friday Favorites is a French Horn Spectacular, featuring great music for horns by Wagner, Schumann and Robin Holloway. Composer Holloway, a mentor of Llewellyn’s at Cambridge, will be a featured speaker at the concert. In February, concertmaster Brian Reagin will be the featured soloist in one of the repertoire’s great violin concertos, written by Tchaikovsky.
May brings Resident Conductor William Henry Curry, along with his guest, soprano Shana Blake Hill, presenting a concert of great American composers, including Copland, Ives and Bernstein, as well as the world premiere of Holiday Songs, written by Curry himself.
Summerfest, the Symphony’s popular open-air concerts under the pines at Regency Park’s Koka Booth Amphitheatre, gets underway on May 30, 2009 for Play with the Pros, featuring area musicians of all ages, followed by the fabulous and always entertaining Red Clay Ramblers on June 6. On June 13, we’ll hear the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, a 50-year New Orleans tradition that we just can’t get enough of, followed on June 20 with Soundtracks Under the Stars, featuring memorable music from Hollywood’s great film scores. On June 27, Cirque de la Symphonie turns the Amphitheatre into a circus, as aerialists fly overhead and acrobatic feats are performed as the orchestra performs favorite classical masterpieces. July 11 finds us playing video games in Play! A Video Game Symphony. You’ll hear award-winning music from a catalogue of blockbuster video game titles while outstanding graphics are projected on large screens about the orchestra. It’s a fiesta of memorable moments from the world’s most popular video games. We’ll finish out the Summerfest season with Russian Masterpieces, featuring stirring music from Tchaikovsky as well as Rachmaninoff’s thrilling Piano Concerto No. 2, performed by pianist Valentina Lisitsa. And as always, we’ll be at Regency Park and on July 4 for all the excitement and fireworks of the Triangle’s best Independence Day celebration.
Special Events for the 2009-10 season include a concert with the incomparable violinist Joshua Bell on January 14. Known for his breadth and daring choices of repertoire, Bell has captured the public’s attention like no other classical violinist of our time. His catalogue of recordings includes The Red Violin Concerto by John Corigliano, featured in the film of the same title. Also on offer is a special Broadway Romance, planned for Valentine’s Day. We’ll welcome in the New Year with Grant Llewellyn, who promises his distinctive mix of fun and surprises to ring in 2010. Concertgoers agree: the North Carolina Symphony’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular is the Triangle’s best party!
Young People’s Series concerts are designed to delight children of all ages and their favorite adults. The series opens October 31; Halloween is certainly the ideal time for The Phantom of the Orchestra, with the Magic Circle Mime Company. Concertgoers will be riveted as a ghostly musician enters the stage and plays Bach’s Toccata and Fugue, calling forth the “phantoms of the orchestra” in a visually stunning concert program that brings the story of the Sorcerer’s Apprentice to life. On January 16, Grant Llewellyn and Mariachi Cobre, best known for their frequent performances at Walt Disney World’s Epcot Center, will celebrate the vibrant cultures of Latin and South America with a whirlwind tour of Mexico, Brazil, Argentina and Peru. Finally, on March 13, YPC will explore dance traditions around the globe. Children will enjoy African drumming, Spanish Flamenco, Appalachian cloggers and soaring ballet dancers in Let’s Dance.
To download and read the full 2009-10 Season series lists with dates, venues and programing click here. (pdf)
Information about subscription options, dates, times and ticket prices is available on the Symphony’s website at www.ncsymphony.org, by calling Audience Services at 919.733.2750, 10am-5pm, Monday through Friday or by visiting our box office located at North Hills in Raleigh. Call for directions.
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