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CLASSICAL  March 2008

CLASSICAL March 2008

Subject:

MTT/SFS Plans

From:

Janos Gereben <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Moderated Classical Music List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 4 Mar 2008 09:14:30 -0800

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (64 lines)

Big, varied next season for Symphony
By Janos Gereben

Classical-music fans are usually so demanding and emotional about their
personal preferences that it's almost impossible to present a symphony
season that makes everybody happy, in the colossal arc from traditionalists
to avant-garde enthusiasts.  Even so, the San Francisco Symphony's
2008-2009 season, announced Monday by Music Director Michael Tilson
Thomas and Executive Director Brent Assink, is so huge, presenting such
a range of music and artists that it is virtually bulletproof - even as
one hears the sound of knives being sharpened.

The orchestra's 97th season, MTT's 14th at the helm, will run from Sept.
3 through June 21 of next year, presenting dozens of programs in hundreds
of performances.  In 2,743-seat Davies Hall alone, that means filling
some quarter million seats during the season, at prices ranging the cost
of a movie ticket to hundreds of dollars for special events.  And, as
Symphony President John D.  Goldman acknowledged at the Monday press
conference, in face of "difficult economic times" coming, requiring
"graduated, reasonable" ticket prices, and the right "positioning of
the Symphony."

When you have such a large-scale operation, with an annual operating
budget of over $58 million, the tried-and-true must play a large role,
even as opera houses around the world survive on <em>Carmen</em> and
<em>Butterfly</em> productions.  And so, there will be plenty of Beethoven
(including the grand and automatic hall-filler Ninth Symphony in September),
Mozart, Tchaikovsky, and Liszt, but MTT stuck his neck out by commissioning
new works from the dauntingly "different" Tatar composer Sofia Gubaidulina
and the young American Mason Bates.  Both composers will spend time in
San Francisco, Gubaidulina featured in a two-week Phyllis C.  Wattis
Composer Residency in February.

The highly-successful, award-winning MTT/SFS Mahler recording cycle will
conclude next season with performances and a recording of the Symphony
No.  8, <em>Symphony of a Thousand</em>.  American composers to heard
next season include Jennifer Higdon, Steven R.  Gerber, and MTT - in
addition to Barber, Bernstein, and Copland.  Living composers from outside
the U.S.  are Britishers Thomas Ades and Oliver Knussen.  Of local
composers, there is a continuing, lamentable dearth.

Among the many invited soloists are 20 debuting artists, including
conductors Nicola Luisotti (San Francisco Opera's next music director)
and Fabio Luisi, pianists Piotr Anderszewski, Yevgeny Sudbin, and Krystian
Zimerman.  "Hot-property" Lang Lang, 25 but in the limelight for a decade
already, will not only give concerts and recitals, but he will participate
in educational events, one of which will be a Davies Hall appearance in
December for Bay Area music students.

Singers making their SFS debut: Frederic Antoun, Eugene Chan, Kendall
Gladen, Hannah Holgersson, Joshua Hopkins, Annika Hudak, Katarina Karneus,
Garrett Sorenson, Matthew White, and Katherine Whyte.

   http://www.sfsymphony.org/templates/basic.asp?nodeid=110

Janos Gereben
www.sfcv.org
[log in to unmask]

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