Season 9 is right around the corner! We're knee-deep in all the details, and these programs keep looking better and better. We thought we'd share a real comprehensive look at the season as a whole—eleven(!) stellar programs that excite our imagination and send us to our practice rooms in anticipation. Here's your official walkthrough of Season 9!
It begins with "TransAmericana," curated by Omar Chen Guey. Omar imagines the program as a long road trip south, moving from Philip Glass's New York to Heitor Villa-Lobos's Brazil, then further down to Gabriela Lena Frank's Peruvian Andes, and Alberto Ginastera's Argentina.
Our second concert, "Vs." is curated by Michael Unterman, and this one's a doozy. "Vs." looks at conflict and rivalry as expressed through music. There's a "sports" section, featuring John Zorn's "Hockey," a "war" section with a Scheidt battalia and the Takemitsu requiem, and a "politics" section with Vivaldi 4-violin debate and Rzewski's "Coming Together." It will be a wild ride.
"Gargantua," our third concert (and first in Jordan Hall), is a show that features two larger-than-life pieces that tell stories, curated by Jesse Irons. First up is Schoenberg's musical drama "Transfigured Night." Second and certainly not the smallest is Francaix's "Gargantua"—the saga of a friendly giant and his many adventures. We're thrilled to have former US Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky narrating this concert!
We start the month of December with a festive "A Tale of Two Sixes," featuring the stylings of Corelli and Handel whose Opus Six collections catapulted them to co-ownership of the "Concerto Grosso Meister" title. Curated by Jae Cosmos Lee, and featuring nearly every Crier in some kind of elegant baroque turn!
5. Old Friend
Miki Cloud and Alex Fortes came together to imagine "Old Friend"—a collaboration with the amazing singer/songwriter/creative soul Gabriel Kahane and "old friend" Franz Schubert. We'll be presenting a new work of Gabriel's, a whole cornucopia of his and Schubert's songs, arranged for A Far Cry, and a performance of Schubert's monumental, existential, Quartet in G Major.
2016 begins with Jason Fisher's li'l baby "Devotion"—a beautiful, contemplative, sensual French program that features Blue Heron in a performance of the Faure Requiem. Words can't express how excited we are to blend our sounds with this stellar group. AFC and Blue Heron will also go toe-to-toe with two 20th century French works—Daniel-Lesur's "Cantique de Cantiques" and Francaix's "Symphonie d'archets." All of this is taking place in a new venue for us: the sublime acoustic in Boston's Old South Church.
In February, Karl and Liesl Doty bring us another killer co-curated show, this one featuring three very different works from the Baltic nations. "Intimate Voices" brings the lonely spaciousness of Arvo Part's "Trisagion" and the frenetic intensity of Krysztof Penderecki's "Sinfonietta" together, tying up the program with a new arrangement of Jean Sibelius's string quartet, "Voces Intimae." Word has it there will be a sweet encore.
8. Lady Russia
March introduces us to "Lady Russia", curated by Jae Cosmos Lee. The program brings together two very different Russian ladies, each one at the top of her game. Classical queen Sofia Gubaidulina's "Fachwerk" (inspired by architecture, and featuring our friend Julien Labro) is paired with indie rocker Olga Bell's back-to-the-hearth album "Krai." This will be an evening filled with unforgettable sounds.
9. Mix Tape
"Mix Tape" is a brand new program experiment for us, and a lot of it it is, well, a secret. We can tell you that: 1. Jesse Irons had the original idea for this Jordan Hall romp, and 2. while you should definitely expect some "tunes" from rep that we love, you should also expect a whole lot more. No, we're not dropping hints. Not yet!
We're so honored, happy, heck, STOKED to work with Simone Dinnerstein on a new re-imagining of the Goldberg Variations that Sarah Darling and Alex Fortes are taking on. Hidden within the keyboard part are whole worlds that can be unpacked, with different interlocking voices, some intimate duets, some full-orchestra numbers, and everything in between. It will be an adventure—and a love letter to this amazing piece.
Finally, our season finale comes to us from the mind of Annie Rabbat. "All-American" takes us all over America, from Mark O'Connor's mountainous "Elevations" to Philip Glass's urban "Company." Particularly exciting is a brand new co-commissioned work by Derek Bermel entitled "Murmurations." And the program goes to a spectacular classical peak with a performance of Leonard Bernstein's Serenade on Plato's Symposium, featuring the supremely poetic violinist Anthony Marwood. This is a piece that never sees the light of day, and which is absolutely spectacular, and we couldn't be more excited to end our ninth season with Bernstein's meditation on the very nature of love!
Whew! There you go. We can't wait to start turning these programs into reality, one by one. And we can't wait to see you at our concerts!
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