From Piano to Pen I André Watts, piano
THU, OCT 26, 2017 | 8PM
What happens when a fearless improviser, already a top virtuoso in the city that dominates the music world, trades his piano keyboard for a blank orchestral score? Whether we are talking about Beethoven composing his First Symphony in Vienna, or jazz pianist Vijay Iyer creating a new work for Orpheus in New York, the results are electrifying. No lineup of powerhouse pianist-composers would be complete without Mozart, whose bold risks paid off in the Piano Concerto No. 9 he composed at 21.
VIJAY IYER: Asunder (New York Premiere)
MOZART: Piano Concerto No. 9, K. 271 “Jeunehomme”
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 1
Behind the Mask I Truls Mørk, cello
SAT, DEC 2, 2017 | 7PM
Handel’s Water Music greets a turbulent world with ripples of pure joy, still living up to its origins as a floating peace offering after a royal conflict. Music can mask a challenging situation, or it can reveal a deeper understanding, like the new work by Shuying Li inspired by the many moods of postpartum motherhood. Shostakovich, navigating dangerous Soviet politics, learned to cloak his startling originality with enchanting layers of humor and humility, as heard in his multi-faceted First Cello Concerto. In his most charming ballet, Pulcinella, Stravinsky brought masked comedians to life by embellishing Baroque source material with added dimensions of wit and sparkle.
HANDEL: Orchestral Suite No. 2, HWV 349 Water Music
SHOSTAKOVICH: Cello Concerto No. 1
SHUYING LI: Down Came the Sunlight: Into the Twenty-third Day (World Premiere)
STRAVINSKY: Pulcinella Suite
Fire and Light I Tine Thing Helseth, trumpet
SAT, FEB 3, 2018 | 7PM
Even at 21, Rossini knew how to light up an opera audience—in the Overture to Il signor Bruschino, he had them laughing before the curtain went up, thanks to some well-timed taps on the violinists’ music stands. Haydn was a dazzling entertainer himself, as heard in the witty “night music” he adapted for London’s adoring crowds. Mozart, in a time of debt and desperation, forged his most intense symphony, No. 40 in G minor. Norway’s Tine Thing Helseth, in her first appearance on the main stage of Carnegie Hall, brings illuminating adaptations of concertos by Bach and Albinoni. Two of the most heavenly slow movements ever written accentuate the voice-like intimacy of Helseth’s trumpet interpretations.
ROSSINI: Overture to Il Signore Bruschino
HAYDN: Notturno No. 1 in C Major
ALBINONI: Trumpet Concerto Op. 9, No. 2
BACH: Trumpet Concerto in D major (after vivaldi), BWV 972
MOZART: Symphony no. 40
The Courage to Create I Lisa Batiashvili, violin
SAT, MAR 24, 2018 | 7PM
Schubert and Prokofiev always followed their hearts and their ears, even when the world misunderstood them. Schubert never had a symphony performed publicly in his lifetime, but he conjured masterful sounds in the “Unfinished” Symphony that he abandoned midway, inexplicably. Music from Rosamunde—one of his many failed attempts to break into the theater world—matches the intensity of the “Unfinished” Symphony, and may have actually begun as its finale. Prokofiev endured his own rejections during his years of exile in Europe, especially once he turned toward a self-described “new simplicity.” The Georgian violinist Lisa Batiashvili brings her insightful perspective to Prokofiev’s elegant Second Violin Concerto, a work steeped in the crosscurrents between Russia and the West.
SCHUBERT: Entr’acte No. 1 from Rosamunde
PROKOFIEV: Violin Concerto No. 2, Op. 63
PROKOFIEV/CHIHARA: Schubert Waltzes Suite
SCHUBERT: Symphony No. 8 Unfinished