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Dear Friends of Music,

Welcome to our November and December Fanfare Magazine, and welcome to the holiday season here at the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Cincinnati Pops. We are glad you are with us.

This November, you’re in for a special treat, as CSO Music Director Louis Langrée brings together his two musical families—the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Opéra-Comique—at Music Hall for the premiere of a new touring production of Ambroise Thomas’ Hamlet. Louis has been excited to share this production with you ever since he conducted the Opéra-Comique’s 2018 production. The DVD of that production won numerous awards, including the 2020–21 Opera Award for Best Recording, the 2021 International Classical Music Award for Best Video Performance and the 2021 Diapason d’or de l’année. Much of the original production will be retained within this new presentation, and we’re thrilled that Hamlet will bring the CSO, May Festival Chorus and Opéra-Comique together in one place for all of you to experience.

Around the corner in December, the Cincinnati Pops’ beloved Holiday Pops concerts return to a decked-out Music Hall. In true JMR fashion and in an embrace of the entire Cincinnati community, the Cincinnati Pops will be joined by the May Festival Youth Chorus, SCPA Chorale, Sycamore High School Select Ensemble, Winton Woods High School Varsity Ensemble, Q-Kidz Dance Team, Studio for Dance and handbell players from the Cincinnati Collaborative Ringing Project for festive music of the season. We invite you to join us in person.

If you’re unable to join us at Music Hall, you can also catch our Holiday Pops concert on our YouTube (CincySymphony) page on Saturday, December 9 at 7:30 pm EST. This performance is one of five free digitally streamed Live from Music Hall concerts this season, and we are delighted to invite the global community to experience what we have to offer here in Cincinnati.

The gift keeps on giving. We are also proud to release three new commercial recordings this season, our first releases since prior to the pandemic in 2019. In September, the CSO led by Louis Langrée released recordings of David Lang’s man made, featuring the CSO’s 2015 and 2021 MusicNOW collaborators Sō Percussion, as well as Christopher Rouse’s Symphony No. 6, which was commissioned for the Orchestra’s 125th anniversary. Both recordings are available digitally on all streaming platforms. Beginning November 17, you can also stream the Cincinnati Pops’ new holiday album, JOY!, featuring a diverse and eclectic collection of favorite holiday classics in new arrangements, led by Cincinnati Pops Conductor John Morris Russell. For those interested in a collectible item, a limited run of vinyl will be available for sale only at our Holiday Pops performances December 8–10.

Finally, in the hustle and bustle of this season, I want to take a moment to thank you for making us a part of your holiday traditions. We do this for all of you, our audiences, and we are grateful for your continued support. As we wrap up 2023 and head into the New Year, we wish you and your loved ones happiness, light and a 2024 full of music.


Jonathan Martin