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Louis Langrée, conductor
Stefani Matsuo, violin
Drew Petersen, piano

 

Our opening concerts symbolize the freedom and joy in being able to gather together to share live music. The program features Brahms’ blockbuster Third Symphony—an outburst of freedom and joy. Pianist Drew Petersen joins concertmaster Stefani Matsuo for Brahms’ Scherzo movement from the collaborative F-A-E Sonata and then performs Andrew Norman’s enigmatic Suspend, which explores melodic fragments from both of Brahms' works.

This program is part of CSO Series 2.

James Gaffigan, conductor
Robert Sullivan, trumpet
Catherine Trottmann, soprano

 

Conductor James Gaffigan returns with Mahler’s Fourth Symphony, a work depicting the stunning grace often found amid tragedy. Soprano Catherine Trottmann makes her CSO debut, and Principal Trumpet Robert Sullivan takes center stage with a rarely heard 18th-century gem by the little-known Czech composer Johann Baptist Georg Neruda.

This program is part of CSO Series 3.

Louis Langrée, conductor
Emanuel Ax, piano

 

Emanuel Ax, a perpetual audience favorite, performs Haydn's shimmering Concerto in D. Composer Sebastian Currier took Louis Langrée’s CSO commission instructions literally: each of the four movements in Track 8 parallels a movement of Beethoven’s Eighth Symphony, in what Currier calls “a Beethoven remix.”

This program is part of CSO Series 1.

Roderick Cox, conductor
Conrad Tao, piano

 

Roderick Cox’s CSO debut takes us into the sound world of the imagination, with works by composers who used the full palette of orchestral colors to illustrate their vision. Mallarmé’s poem depicting a faun’s ephemeral fantasies inspired Debussy’s most famous work. Pianist Conrad Tao performs Ravel’s concerto inspired by jazz and Basque folk music, and Mendelssohn’s Scottish evokes the dramatic landscapes of the British Isles.

This program is part of CSO Series 2.

James Conlon, conductor

 

James Conlon, May Festival Music Director Laureate, returns with works by three composers who touch on universal themes of cultural identity and our shared humanity. Dawson, a pioneering composer in his time, expresses the Black American experience while Beethoven's and Bernstein’s works illustrate the conflicts between cultures thrown together through circumstance.

This program is part of CSO Series 3.

Louis Langrée, conductor
Nicola Benedetti, violin

 

At the turn of the 20th century, there were no greater orchestrators than Ravel and Strauss, whose works unleash the full force of the orchestra in all of its innumerable colors. Grammy-winning violinist Nicola Benedetti gives the U.S. premiere of Mark Simpson’s dazzling new violin concerto. Finished during the pandemic, the work “explodes with all those feelings—frustration, anger, restlessness, confusion, uncertainty—that have had nowhere to go during the lockdowns” (The Times, London).

This program is part of CSO Series 1.

Matthias Pintscher, conductor
Leila Josefowicz, violin

 

CSO Creative Partner Matthias Pintscher and close collaborator, violinist Leila Josefowicz, premiere Pintscher's brand new concerto, written for the CSO. Completing the program is another composer who conducted his own works: Sergei Rachmaninoff, whose spirited Symphonic Dances are always an audience favorite.

This program is part of CSO Series 2.

John Storgårds, conductor
Ksenija Sidorova, accordion

 

The versatility of Glass, Piazzolla and Adams shines as conductor John Storgårds leads a program conjuring missing lovers, misspent youth, intrigue, and the early hours of Los Angeles. Piazzolla’s steamy, sultry Latin tangos are mesmerizing as performed by accordionist Ksenija Sidorova in her CSO debut.

This program is part of CSO Series 3.

Karina Canellakis, conductor

Alisa Weilerstein, cello

 

Audience favorite Alisa Weilerstein brings her trademark intensity to Elgar’s fiery and elegant Cello Concerto. Full of energy, Augusta Read Thomas’ Brio is a joyous opening to the program, and the artistry of conductor Karina Canellakis and the CSO is on display with Sibelius' depiction of mythological dark Nordic waters, icy adventures and a sonorous swan song.

This program is part of CSO Series 1.

Louis Langrée, conductor
Jennifer Koh, violin
May Festival Chorus, Robert Porco, director

 

Jennifer Koh is a prolific champion of new works and stars in the premiere of a CSO co-commission by “Brooklyn’s post-millennial Mozart,” Missy Mazzoli. The May Festival Chorus makes a triumphant return to Music Hall for Mozart’s poignant Mass, taking us from anxiety and darkness to glorious transfiguration.

This program is part of CSO Series 2.

Louis Langrée, conductor

Eighth Blackbird

 

GRAMMY Award-winning Eighth Blackbird joins the CSO for a premiere from
Kinds of Kings, a U.S.-based composer collective amplifying and advocating for underrepresented voices. A new fanfare by Wynton Marsalis shows off the Orchestra’s brass, and Symphonie fantastique completes the concert with a delirious dream fueled by Berlioz’s obsessive passion and unrequited love.

This program is part of CSO Series 3.

Kazushi Ōno, conductor

Seong-Jin Cho, piano

 

Prokofiev’s powerful hymn to humanity anchors a program featuring the CSO debuts of conductor Kazushi Ōno and star pianist Seong-Jin Cho. The vivid musical imagery of Japanese composer Tōru Takemitsu sets the stage for Bartók’s airy and virtuosic Piano Concerto No. 3.

This program is part of CSO Series 1.

Louis Langrée, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano

 

Powerhouse pianist Yefim Bronfman returns to the CSO with Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3. Julia Adolphe’s premiere evokes the power of nature and its malleable, playful, childlike qualities. With La Mer let your imagination soar—Debussy’s masterful use of orchestral colors makes this impressionistic work a perpetual audience favorite.

This program is part of CSO Series 2.

Louis Langrée, conductor
Dwight Parry, oboe

 

Rachmaninoff’s lush and romantic Second Symphony uses the full force of the orchestra to deliver one of the most popular symphonic works. Opening the concert is a world premiere by French composer Guillaume Connesson, written for CSO Principal Oboe Dwight Parry.

This program is part of CSO Series 1.

Louis Langrée, conductor

 

Louis Langrée calls Bruckner’s Seventh Symphony “a cathedral of sound—spiritual, soaring and transcendent." The concert opens with a new work by Gabriela Ortiz, identified by NPR as “one of Mexico’s most sought-after classical composers,” whose musical language stems from her heritage and yet is all her own.

This program is part of CSO Series 3.

In the first of two special performances in collaboration with MusicNOW, Louis Langrée and the CSO welcome pianist Daniil Trifonov and folk supergroup Bonny Light Horseman. Trifonov opens the program with a kaleidoscopic showcase of colors in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4. Tony Award-winning singer-songwriter, Anaïs Mitchell (Hadestown) alongside bandmates Josh Kaufman (The National, Hiss Golden Messenger) and Eric D. Johnson (Fruit Bats, The Shins) bring fan favorites and new tunes specially arranged for orchestra by hometown hero Bryce Dessner.

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In the second performance presented in collaboration with MusicNOW, GRAMMY award-winning pianist Daniil Trifonov returns with Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2, a lyrical showpiece that established Beethoven as a brilliant pianist. Louis Langrée and the CSO are joined by 2015 MusicNOW collaborators Sō Percussion, who shine with their unconventional instrumentation in David Lang’s man made. Bryce Dessner’s Quilting examines the art of musical patchworking to open the program.

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CSO Creative Partner Matthias Pintscher and pianist Inon Barnatan return to Music Hall for a special collaboration with the CSO. The CSO’s own Henrik Heide brings the Aello (‘harpy’) character to life in Olga Neuwirth’s flute concerto, while Pintscher’s Nur (“Fire”) explores the transformative power of fire. A rare U.S. performance of Lachenmann’s Tableau studies “non-music, which is again music” and Scriabin’s sublime Poème de l’extase close out the program.

Preceding the performance in the Music Hall Foyer is Jay Schwartz’s Music for Autosonic Gongs, an installation for 8 electro-acoustically controlled tam-tams.

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John Morris Russell, conductor
Aubrey Logan, vocalist
Michael Preacely, vocalist

 

Joy to the world! Cincinnati’s beloved holiday tradition returns with music, warmth, laughter and seasonal inspiration for the entire family. Gather those dear to you to share unforgettable memories in the grandeur of a Music Hall adorned with wondrous decorations and joyful song.

This program is included in the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Pops Series. 

John Morris Russell, conductor
Cirque de la Symphonie

 

Dizzying heights and Broadway lights come together for a captivating Pops & Cirque mashup. Marvel at the eye-popping feats of Cirque’s mesmerizing acrobats with JMR and the Pops performing top Broadway hits to accompany contortionists, balancers, tumblers, and athletes on aerial silks defying gravity and doing the seemingly impossible.

This program is included in the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Pops Series. 

Damon Gupton, conductor

 

Happy Birthday, John Williams! Pops Principal Guest Conductor Damon Gupton and the Pops treat us to a slice of John Williams’ most beloved scores—just in time for his 90th birthday. Experience selections from Superman, Star Wars, E.T., Jaws, Witches of Eastwick and more by one of the greatest composers of our lifetime.

This performance does not contain film clips.

This program is included in the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Pops Series. 

John Morris Russell, conductor

Tamika Lawrence, vocalist

CoCo Smith, vocalist
Blaine Krauss, vocalist

 

JMR and the Pops join with three powerhouse vocalists to pay R-E-S-P-E-C-T to Aretha Franklin, “the #1 singer of all time” (Rolling Stone). Come celebrate the life and music of an American icon featuring your favorite hits from the Queen of Soul!

This program is included in the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Pops Series. 

John Morris Russell, conductor

 

We're celebrating 10 years of JMR by pulling out all the stops—and the stars! Join the Pops and a host of guest artists from some of the past decade's most memorable performances to celebrate JMR, JMR-style—with music from every genre, including iconic movie themes, pop, classics, Broadway and jazz, plus a cache of musical memories. We'll also look ahead with a new work commissioned from Grammy Award-winning composer Eric Whitacre.

This program is included in the Friday, Saturday and Sunday Pops Series. 

Sarah Hicks, conductor
Frederico Ramos, guitar

 

Follow 12-year-old Miguel on an extraordinary musical journey in this Academy Award® winner for Best Animated Feature Film.

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Damon Gupton, conductor

 

“I am a Jedi, like my father before me….”

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Christopher Dragon, conductor

 

“This is Halloween!”

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