Calendar

Senior Groups

Our Sunday matinee series and Thursday morning coffee concerts are a popular favorite with senior groups of 10 or more. The coffee concerts include complimentary coffee and donuts. Our facilities are fully accessible with amenities including bus parking, accessible seating and assistive listening devices.

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Eligible Concerts

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Fei Xie Plays Mozart

Program

SMITH/Skrowaczewski
The Star-Spangled Banner / 2 min

SIBELIUS
Finlandia / 8 min

MOZART
Bassoon Concerto / 18 min

SAARIAHO
Ciel d'hiver / 10 min

BRAHMS
Symphony No. 4 / 40 min

At a Glance

Mozart’s only bassoon concerto highlights the instrument’s rich versatility in a concert that showcases the talent of the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal bassoonist, Fei Xie.

Planning Ahead

We know you have questions about what your concert-going experience will be like when the Minnesota Orchestra resumes performances. Our teams are working now to synthesize expert guidance from public health authorities into new health and safety protocols for the concert hall that will exceed your expectations. We will share these plans with all concertgoers at least one month before concerts resume. In the meantime, please explore Minnesota Orchestra At Home, our growing digital performance collection featuring Orchestra musicians from their homes (and lots more!). Stay safe and be well.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Fei Xie began playing the bassoon at the age of twelve. Both of his parents are Peking Opera musicians and his uncle is a composer who introduced him to classical music at the age of three.
  • Originally created to reinforce an orchestra’s bass line, the bassoon has developed into an instrument with a distinctive, warm tone that allows it to create unique textures when paired with other instruments as well as sing out as a soloist.
  • Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho received the 2017 BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award for her contributions in “breaking down the divisions between acoustic and electronic music.”

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Aug 13 7:30pm

Fri Aug 14 8pm

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Park and Ainomäe Play Brahms

Program

FAGERLUND
Water Atlas / 18 min

BRAHMS
Double Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra / 31 min

MOZART
Symphony No. 41, Jupiter / 37 min

At a Glance

Smooth and sonorous, Brahms’ concerto lyrically unites the voices of the cello and violin in a program that showcases two of the Orchestra’s virtuoso musicians.

Planning Ahead

We know you have questions about what your concert-going experience will be like when the Minnesota Orchestra resumes performances. Our teams are working now to synthesize expert guidance from public health authorities into new health and safety protocols for the concert hall that will exceed your expectations. We will share these plans with all concertgoers at least one month before concerts resume. In the meantime, please explore Minnesota Orchestra At Home, our growing digital performance collection featuring Orchestra musicians from their homes (and lots more!). Stay safe and be well.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Brahms wrote this concerto inspired and encouraged by his friend and fellow collaborator, violinist Joseph Joachim.
  • Susie Park started playing the violin at age three and made her solo debut at five. Silver Ainomäe began cello at six and debuted in his first international competition at age eight.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Aug 27 11am

Fri Aug 28 8pm

Sat Aug 29 8pm

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Vänskä Conducts Scheherazade

Program

BEETHOVEN
Symphony No. 1 / 27 min

BEETHOVEN/arr. Schulhoff 
Rondo a capriccio / 7 min

RIMSKY-KORSAKOV
Scheherazade / 47 min

At a Glance

Prepare to be enchanted by the ornamental wonder of Rimsky-Korsakov’s universally-revered Scheherazade. 

Planning Ahead

We know you have questions about what your concert-going experience will be like when the Minnesota Orchestra resumes performances. Our teams are working now to synthesize expert guidance from public health authorities into new health and safety protocols for the concert hall that will exceed your expectations. We will share these plans with all concertgoers at least one month before concerts resume. In the meantime, please explore Minnesota Orchestra At Home, our growing digital performance collection featuring Orchestra musicians from their homes (and lots more!). Stay safe and be well.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Rimsky-Korsakov’s masterpiece Scheherazade is an orchestral suite based on the Middle Eastern folk tale collection One Thousand and One Nights, or Arabian Nights.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Sep 3 11am

Fri Sep 4 8pm

Sat Sep 5 8pm

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Season Opening: Vänskä and Thibaudet

Program

MONTGOMERY
Strum / 7 min

ROSSINI
Overture to William Tell  / 12 min

MACMILLAN
Piano Concerto No. 3, The Mysteries of Light / 25 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

BERLIOZ
Symphonie fantastique  / 49 min

At a Glance

We begin the season with an inventive and celebratory work by Jessie Montgomery. Then we welcome the world’s most vibrant piano soloist, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, who plays a showpiece by Scotland’s James MacMillan that he says holds “true spiritual power.” To close, Osmo Vänskä conducts the bold musical painting of Hector Berlioz, Symphonie fantastique.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Jean-Yves Thibaudet, piano

Did You Know?

  • Berlioz’s early Romantic masterpiece, Symphonie fantastique, tells the tale of a love-sick artist whose unrequited love for another drove him to an opium-fueled fever dream. This led Leonard Bernstein to describe the work as the “first psychedelic symphony.”
  • Legendary pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet has a strong personal relationship with composer James MacMillan. Thibaudet says, “When you listen to his music, you can immediately know it’s MacMillan's music. Not because it all sounds the same, far from it. It’s a very unique language.”
  • This concert marks the penultimate season opening celebration of Osmo Vänskä’s tenure as music director of the Minnesota Orchestra.
  • Rossini’s Overture to William Tell was catapulted into mainstream success as the opening theme for the television show The Lone Ranger during its run from 1949-1957.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Sep 24 11am

Fri Sep 25 8pm

Sat Sep 26 8pm

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Gerstein Plays Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 4

Program

AUERBACH
Icarus / 12 min

RACHMANINOFF
Piano Concerto No. 4 / 24 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

SHOSTAKOVICH
Symphony No. 1 / 28 min

At a Glance

Kirill Gerstein brings his monster talent back to our stage to continue the Rachmaninoff cycle of all of the Russian master’s gorgeous piano-and-orchestra pieces during 2020. This all-Russian program begins with an exciting evocation of Icarus, the mythological character who flew too close to the sun. And we close with a stunning symphony by 19-year-old Shostakovich.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • In the spirit of giving the people what they want, Sergei Rachmaninoff rewrote his Fourth Piano Concerto twice. The third version (published about 15 years after the first) is what’s generally performed today.
  • Lera Auerbach was born in Soviet Russia in 1973 and began composing when she was just four years old, and has worked to develop a very powerful, visceral and captivating composition style.
  • Talk about an over-achiever: Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 1 was a music conservatory graduation project when the composer was just 19 years old.
  • Kirill Gerstein and the Minnesota Orchestra continue our mini-Rachmaninoff project, performing all four of Rachmaninoff’s piano concertos. Gerstein will visit in December to perform the Piano Concerto No. 3.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Oct 2 8pm

Sat Oct 3 8pm

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Guarantors’ Week: Vänskä, Kavakos and Paulus

Program

LEE
Sukkot Through Orion's Nebula

SHOSTAKOVICH
Violin Concerto No. 1  / 36 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

PAULUS
To Be Certain of the Dawn  / 60 min

At a Glance

In 2005 the Orchestra premiered Stephen Paulus’ Holocaust memorial oratorio To Be Certain of the Dawn, with libretto by Michael Dennis Browne. Now, on the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi death camps, we sing its urgent messages. The Orchestra also performs music by composer James Lee III that celebrates the Jewish Feast of the Tabernacles, and violinist Leonidas Kavakos plays the heart-wrenching First Concerto of Shostakovich.

Guarantor's Week

These concerts are dedicated to the generous donors, also called Guarantors, who have been at the heart of this Orchestra since its inception in 1903. During Guarantors' Week, we offer our deepest gratitude to the growing number of donors who ensure that the Orchestra can continue to achieve its mission to Enrich, Inspire and Serve the community. Thank you, donors!

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Leonidas Kavakos, violin
  • Barry Abelson, cantor
  • Leah Brzyski, soprano
  • Christina Baldwin, mezzo
  • Joseph Leppek, tenor
  • Aaron Keeney, baritone
  • Minnesota Chorale
  • Minnesota Boychoir
  • Basilica Cathedral Choir
  • Basilica Cathedral Choristers

Did You Know?

  • To Be Certain of the Dawn is a massive work in both scale and subject matter. It was written to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Jewish prisoners being liberated from the Nazi death camps during World War II.
  • To Be Certain of the Dawn is an oratorio, which is typically a large-scale sacred work featuring both an orchestra and voices. In this case, four different choirs (including the Minnesota Boychoir) along with four soloists from the Minnesota Opera will all be present on stage.
  • Leonidas Kavakos has become a preeminent authority on Jean Sibelius, becoming the first to ever record the original version of the Finnish composer’s Violin Concerto.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Oct 16 8pm

Sat Oct 17 8pm

Sun Oct 18 2pm

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Runnicles Conducts Haydn and Bruckner

Program

HAYDN
Cello Concerto in C major / 25 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

BRUCKNER
Symphony No. 7 / 64 min

At a Glance

Honed over decades by our beloved former music director, the late Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, the Minnesota Orchestra has a unique affinity for Bruckner, truly letting the brass and strings sing from within his music. And Donald Runnicles is laying exciting new claims to Bruckner’s epic symphonies today. We set this stage with the sunniest of Haydn’s concertos, performed by one of the world’s finest cellists, Johannes Moser.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Donald Runnicles, conductor
  • Johannes Moser, cello

Did You Know?

  • Like many of us, Anton Bruckner was a constant over-thinker. Now he’s considered a genius who helped usher in a new artistic period of orchestral music. But he was famously self-critical of his own music and would often tirelessly rework his own compositions.
  • Scottish conductor Donald Runnicles is no stranger to this side of the Atlantic. He has served as the principal guest conductor for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for almost 20 years.
  • After making a stunning debut with the Minnesota Orchestra last season, German-Canadian cellist Johannes Moser returns to perform Haydn’s Cello Concerto No. 1.
  • Franz Joseph Haydn’s First Cello Concerto was composed around 1761 but was thought to have been lost completely until almost 200 years later.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Oct 29 11am

Fri Oct 30 8pm

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U.S. Naval Academy Glee Club with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

The talented young Midshipmen of the United States Naval Academy Men’s and Women’s Glee Clubs join forces with the Minnesota Orchestra to celebrate Veterans Day weekend in spectacular fashion. Together, they’ll perform patriotic favorites, Broadway hits, choral and operatic classics, and collaborate with the Minnesota Orchestra’s own Charles Lazarus on some very special arrangements.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • The United States Naval Academy Glee Club is composed of the USNA Men’s Glee Club and the USNA Women’s Glee Club. Both perform separately all around the world but often collaborate on tours.
  • The United States Naval Academy Women’s Glee Club, founded in 1976 when the Academy first allowed women to enter, is the only all-female military choral ensemble in the world.
  • The Naval Academy Chapel, where the Glee Club often performs, is recognized as a National Historic Landmark and construction on the stunning building began in 1904, a year after the Minnesota Orchestra was founded.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sat Nov 14 2pm

Sat Nov 14 8pm

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Brahms, Mozart and Stravinsky’s Firebird

Program

BRAHMS
Variations on a Theme by Haydn  / 19 min

MOZART
Violin Concerto No. 4 / 24 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

STRAVINSKY
The Firebird   / 44 min

At a Glance

If you’ve ever enjoyed one of the brilliant concert suites lifted from Stravinsky’s ballet The Firebird, you’ve heard a synopsis. Here’s a rare chance to hear the whole ballet unfold in all its glory. This is big bold music, and we balance that with Mozart’s Fourth Violin Concerto—which is porcelain perfection. And there is no finer Mozartian today than guest violinist Baiba Skride.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Dima Slobodeniouk, conductor
  • Baiba Skride, violin

Did You Know?

  • One man’s finale is another man’s opener. Prog-rock staples Yes used the ending section of Stravinsky’s Firebird ballet as their walk-on music at live performances.
  • Growing up in the Soviet Union, violinist Baiba Skride simply dreamed of visiting somewhere outside of Latvia even just once in her life. Now she shares her refreshing interpretations and delightful style with audiences all over the world.
  • Russian-Finnish conductor Dima Slobodeniouk currently holds the position of principal conductor of the Lahti Symphony Orchestra in Finland, the same position our own Osmo Vänskä held from 1988 until 2008.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Nov 20 8pm

Sat Nov 21 8pm

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Chamber Music: INSPIRATIONS

At a Glance

Minnesota Orchestra musicians come together in small ensembles to perform cherished classics and innovative new music on Sunday afternoons in the Target Atrium.

Did You Know?

  • Composers often write their best music while traveling abroad, influenced by new surroundings, as was the case for both Dvořák and Hindemith. Listen and be inspired as a new Chamber Music season begins.
  • Mozart and Dvořák’s quintets are both written for a “viola quintet,” or a standard string quartet with the addition of one viola. Mozart was the first composer to establish this instrumentation; he himself was a violist!
  • Dvořák wrote his String Quintet in E-flat major while living in Spillville, Iowa, in 1893. It is often referred to as his American Quintet and was composed around the same time as his very popular American String Quartet.
  • Throughout his career, Hindemith composed a sonata for nearly every instrument in the orchestra. The Double Bass Sonata was one of the final ones in his collection, composed while he was on vacation in New Mexico. It was followed only by one other—his Sonata for Tuba and Piano.

Program and Artists

HINDEMITH
Sonata for Bass and Piano / 13 min

MOZART
String Quintet in C major / 30 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

SCHUBERT
String Trio in B-flat major  / 9 min

DVOŘÁK
String Quintet in E minor / 34 min

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sun Nov 22 4:30pm

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Beethoven and Debussy

Program

BEETHOVEN
Symphony No. 6, Pastoral / 40 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

DUTILLEUX
L’Arbre des songes (The Tree of Dreams) / 25 min

DEBUSSY
La mer / 23 min

At a Glance

Spectacular recent debuts in Chicago, Philadelphia and European capitals are spreading the word fast: David Afkham is one of Germany’s most gifted young conductors. In his first Minnesota appearance, he leads a program born outdoors. Come along and take the most famous symphonic walk-in-the-woods ever written, Beethoven’s Sixth, get lost in the reverie of Dutilleux’s violin concerto, Tree of Dreams, and prepare to sail in Debussy’s sumptuous evocation of the sea.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • David Afkham, conductor
  • Ning Feng, violin

Did You Know?

  • Referred to as the Pastoral Symphony, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 is featured prominently (if not controversially) in Disney’s 1940 animated film Fantasia.
  • French composer Henri Dutilleux’s violin concerto L’Arbre des songes (The Tree of Dreams), paints a vivid picture of the growth of a tree and the continual renewal and rebirth of nature.
  • Destined for the big screen, several motifs from Debussy’s La mer (The Sea) made their way into the score of the 1975 film Jaws, for which John Williams won the Academy Award for Best Original Dramatic Score.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Dec 3 11am

Fri Dec 4 8pm

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Merry and Bright with Charles Lazarus

At a Glance

Give your holiday season a big, brassy boost as Minnesota Orchestra trumpeter Charles Lazarus and some very special guests swing their way through your favorite holiday tunes. Lazarus’ all-star band features Grammy-winners, former Prince collaborators and many world-renowned performers, all lending a bright, fresh take on the most beloved classics.

Artists

  • Charles Lazarus, trumpet
  • Tommy Barbarella, piano and keyboards
  • Jeff Bailey, bass
  • Tonia Hughes, vocals
  • Bruce A. Henry, vocals
  • Daryl Boudreaux, percussion
  • David Schmalenberger, drums
  • The Lazarus Brass

Did You Know?

  • In addition to being a renowned trumpet player, Charles Lazarus is a composer and educator, serving as a faculty member in the University of Minnesota’s School of Music and educator, and has taught master classes in every U.S. stage, Canada, South America and throughout Europe and Asia.
  • Minnesota Royalty: From 1991 to 1996, keyboard player Tommy Barbarella performed as a member of Prince’s band, New Power Generation.
  • In addition to being a powerhouse gospel and R&B singer (and the recipient of a 2017-2018 McKnight Fellowship for Musicians), Tonia Hughes is also an accomplished actor with theater performances at the Guthrie Theater and Ordway under her belt.

Please note: The Minnesota Orchestra does not perform on this program.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sat Dec 5 8pm

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Russian Masters: Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky

Program

CLYNE
Within Her Arms  / 14 min

RACHMANINOFF
Piano Concerto No. 3  / 44 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

TCHAIKOVSKY
Sleeping Beauty Suite  / 24 min

TCHAIKOVSKY
Francesca da Rimini  / 20 min

At a Glance

Xian Zhang is widely recognized for her visionary programming and conducting. True to form, she begins her Orchestra Hall program with Anna Clyne’s tender memorial to her mother, Within Her Arms, and concludes with music of heroines from fairy tale and history. The centerpiece: Kirill Gerstein completes our 2020 Rachmaninoff piano-and-orchestra cycle with the most sumptuous and daunting of Rachmaninoff’s concertos.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Anna Clyne’s music has become a favorite for Minnesota Orchestra programs, and the Grammy-nominated English composer is a 2006 alumna of the Orchestra’s Composer Institute.
  • Rachmaninoff and his family fled Russia after the Russian Revolution in 1918 and he spent the last 25 years of his life living and composing in the United States.
  • One of Tchaikovsky’s most important relationships was with a Russian business woman and arts patron, Nadezhda von Meck. Her well-known 13-year support came with the strict stipulation that they never meet.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Dec 11 8pm

Sat Dec 12 8pm

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Home for the Holidays with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

A masterful blend of music, humor and heart (with a heaping spoonful of nostalgia), Home for the Holidays explores some of Minnesota’s most time-honored and quirky holiday customs. Sarah Hicks, the Minnesota Orchestra, some of the Twin Cities’ favorite performers, and Minnesota theater and storytelling icon Kevin Kling present the perfect addition to your holiday tradition.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Peter Rothstein, stage director
  • Kevin Kling, writer and storyteller
  • Robert Elhai and Peter Ostroushko, composers
  • Eric McEnaney, musical preparation
  • Christina Baldwin, ensemble
  • Robert Berdahl, ensemble
  • Greta Oglesby, ensemble
  • Huxley Westemeier, ensemble

Did You Know?

  • Born a storyteller: A theater producer in the early 1980s convinced Kevin Kling to pursue storytelling after being so captivated with Kling simply telling a story at a party.
  • Huxley Westemeier, now in his second year as young Kevin Kling, made his Broadway National Tour debut when he was 10 years old in Andrew Lloyd Webber's School of Rock.
  • Twin Cities mandolin virtuoso Peter Ostroushko composed the song "Heart of the Heartland," which Robert Elhai uses as a musical theme throughout Home for the Holidays. Ostroushko first rose to fame as a member of the band in Bob Dylan's seminal Blood on the Tracks album.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Dec 18 8pm

Sat Dec 19 2pm

Sat Dec 19 8pm

Sun Dec 20 2pm

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George Winston

At a Glance

With his Midwestern roots, a Montana upbringing and influences from jazz to Hawaiian slack key guitar, George Winston has carved out a style all his own and composed some of the most beloved piano and guitar music of the last four decades. His expressive and improvisational playing style and mesmerizing presence find a winter home at Orchestra Hall. Settle in for a very special evening.

Artists

  • George Winston, piano

Did You Know?

  • In the early 1980s, George Winston had three consecutive records reach Platinum status, including 1982’s December, which reached Triple Platinum in the United States.
  • Over the last four decades, Winston has lent his unique musical stylings to audio versions of books and short stories, including a beloved children’s favorite, The Velveteen Rabbit, narrated by Meryl Streep.
  • Winston is a practitioner, fan and preservationist of Hawaiian music. In 1983, he founded a record label called Dancing Cats Records with a mission to publish Hawaiian slack-key guitar music and the music of Hawaiian artists.

Please note: The Minnesota Orchestra does not perform on this concert.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Mon Dec 21 7:30pm

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Ehnes Plays the Violin Concerto

Program

DVOŘÁK
Serenade in E major for String Orchestra / 27 min

DVOŘÁK
Violin Concerto / 31 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

DVOŘÁK
Symphony No. 7 / 38 min

At a Glance

A string-lover’s paradise. We open with Dvořak’s lush, song-filled Serenade for Strings, then welcome phenom James Ehnes for Dvořak’s Violin Concerto. And though his Seventh Symphony is not as famous as his Ninth, it is arguably the greatest of Dvořak’s symphonies—full of fiery Czech dance rhythms and bold harmonies, and holding one of the most exciting finales of all.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • James Ehnes, violin

Did You Know?

  • Canadian violinist (and two-time Grammy-winner) James Ehnes has remarkably logged almost 50 different recordings since 1995, including being featured on a 2005 recording.
  • Hyperspeed engaged: In addition to the Serenade in E major, 1875 also saw the creation of Dvořák’s Fifth Symphony, his Second String Quintet, First Piano Trio, the Moravian Duets and the opera Vanda.
  • While Dvořák’s Seventh Symphony is a celebration of all things Czech, it’s also deeply personal. Initial sketches of the slow movement contained the footnote, “From the sad years,” likely referring to the recent death of his mother and previous death of his oldest child.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Jan 8 8pm

Sat Jan 9 8pm

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Vänskä Conducts Dvořák's New World Symphony

Program

DVOŘÁK
Serenade in D minor for Wind Instruments  / 23 min

DVOŘÁK
Piano Concerto  / 36 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

DVOŘÁK
Symphony No. 9, From the New World  / 43 min

At a Glance

We guarantee you’ll go home humming the African American spiritual-inspired melody, one of the most beloved in the world of classical music, found in the slow movement of Dvořak’s dramatic Ninth. Discoveries are here as well in his wonderfully captivating Wind Serenade and the magnificent Piano Concerto, performed by Sunwook Kim.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Sunwook Kim, piano

Did You Know?

  • Sunwook Kim was just 25 years old when he made his debut at the BBC Proms, one of the largest classical music festivals in the world. Of his performance, Bachtrack said: “Kim placed pianissimos always on the edge of disappearance so that the audience almost had to strain to hear; the effect was spellbinding.”
  • Out of this world: Astronaut Neil Armstrong brought a tape recording of Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 along with him during the Apollo 11 moon landing mission in 1969.
  • While not the first noteworthy Czech composer, Dvořák’s was the first to reach international acclaim and did it with a style drenched in Czech folk and dance themes.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Jan 14 11am

Fri Jan 15 8pm

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Symphony in 60: Dvořák Symphony No. 9

About Symphony in 60

Symphony in 60 concerts feature classical music's most beloved composers and pieces. Our musicians have curated the list and can't wait to share this program with you. This bite-sized concert featuring Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 begins at 6pm–plus, there are happy hour specials and a post-concert onstage reception with Minnesota Orchestra musicians. Come as you are and enjoy the best of orchestral music!

Program

DVOŘÁK
Symphony No. 9, From the New World 

At a Glance

One of the most famous symphonies in the all the world was finished not far from here, in the cornfields of northeast Iowa. Czech composer Antonín Dvořák spent a summer there letting the songs of Native Americans and African Americans play in his imagination. In this quick 60-minute concert, you’ll hear the whole glorious piece complete, and most likely leave Orchestra Hall humming the unforgettable melody at its heart.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Symphony in 60 gives you even more ways to enjoy your night out. $5 happy hours, tasty treats and a chance to meet the musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra.
  • Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 is one of the most well-known symphonies in classical music. With Music Director Osmo Vänskä at the podium, this is sure to be a very special performance.
  • If you’re interested in seeing where Dvořák composed this masterwork, you don’t need to drive more than a few hours south of the Twin Cities to Spillville, Iowa. Dvořák wrote this symphony (and two other pieces) during a summer stay in the small Iowa town.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sat Jan 16 6pm

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Ingrid Fliter Plays Mozart

Program

SØRENSEN
Evening Land / 13 min

MOZART
Piano Concerto No. 23  / 26 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

RACHMANINOFF
Symphony No. 1 / 41 min

At a Glance

Sorensen’s Evening Land, a shimmering and emotional work, sets in motion this concert full of melody, including one of the most touching passages that Mozart ever created. You’ll hear it in the middle of his Piano Concerto No. 23, played by Ingrid Fliter, famous for her crystalline tone. And a Rachmaninoff rarity to close: his First Symphony, written when he was only in his early 20s, yet one of his most powerful scores.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Thomas Søndergård, conductor
  • Ingrid Fliter, piano

Did You Know?

  • Evening Land was premiered by its commissioning ensemble, the New York Philharmonic, under the baton of former Minnesota Orchestra Music Director Edo de Waart.
  • In addition to being an outstanding concert pianist, Argentina native Ingrid Fliter is also a painter. According to Fliter, painting has “unleashed a magical new world to me.”
  • A creative burst: Within two months of completing his Piano Concerto No. 23, Mozart completed the next one (Piano Concerto No. 24) and saw the premiere of his opera, The Marriage of Figaro.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Jan 29 8pm

Sat Jan 30 8pm

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Celebrating Broadway's Leading Ladies

At a Glance

From Roxie, Velma and Eva Peron to Elphaba, Glinda and Tracy Turnblad, Broadway is full of strong women whose voices have delighted and inspired us. Join us for an afternoon of incredible Broadway tunes and a celebration of Girl Power! Featuring selections from Wonderful Town, Chicago, Evita, Rent, Wicked, Hairspray and Mean Girls, among other popular shows.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Soloists to be announced

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sun Jan 31 2pm

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Sounds of Spring: Delius, Debussy and Mendelssohn

Program

MENDELSSOHN
Concerto for Violin, Piano and Orchestra / 36 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

L. BOULANGER
D’un matin de printemps  (On a Spring Morning) / 5 min

DELIUS
Idylle de printemps (Spring Idyll) / 8 min

DEBUSSY
Printemps (Spring) / 15 min

At a Glance

The spirit of springtime bursts from nearly every bar of this program, from the quicksilver glint in Mendelssohn’s Double Concerto, to Lili Boulanger’s buoyant depiction of a morning in May and Debussy’s seductive Spring. These are all specialties of one of the esteemed Orchestra Hall guest conductors of recent seasons, Juanjo Mena.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Child prodigy: Lili Boulanger accompanied her older sister, Nadia, to classes at the Paris Conservatory before she was even 5 years old.
  • What could have been: The first version of Debussy’s Printemps was actually lost in a fire. The version we know today was rewritten in 1908.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Thu Feb 4 11am

Fri Feb 5 8pm

Sat Feb 6 8pm

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Chamber Music: ARCHITECTURE

At a Glance

Minnesota Orchestra musicians come together in small ensembles to perform cherished classics and innovative new music on Sunday afternoons in the Target Atrium.

Did You Know?

  • A sparkling and exuberant string quintet by Mendelssohn, an emotional string quartet by Benjamin Britten and Brahms’ rhapsodic Sextet make up this winter concert highlighting brilliant musical architecture.
  • Mendelssohn composed his First String Quintet at the age of 17. A few years later, he returned to this piece and rewrote the third movement, replacing the original Minuetto with an Intermezzo dedicated to the memory of his first violin teacher, Eduard Rietz.
  • Benjamin Britten’s First String Quartet received great acclaim soon after it was completed. Musicologists and critics commented on his unmatched ability to create character and emotion through complex harmonies, and found moments in this quartet comparable to music by the likes of Beethoven, Bartók, Haydn and Stravinsky.
  • One theme featured in Brahms’ Sextet was crafted using the letters of a young woman’s first name, Agathe (a soprano with whom he was briefly engaged), which could be recognized within the musical notes A, G, A, H (in German musical terms: B-flat) and E.

Program and Artists

MENDELSSOHN
String Quintet in A major / 30 min

BRITTEN
String Quartet No. 1 / 26 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

BRAHMS
String Sextet in G major / 34 min

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sun Feb 7 4:30pm

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Lunar New Year Concert with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

NEW THIS SEASON!

Celebrate the Lunar New Year with the Minnesota Orchestra and welcome the Year of the Ox! This vibrant event will draw upon cultural traditions past and present.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Conductor and guest artists to be announced

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Fri Feb 12 8pm

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Lovejoy with Charles Lazarus

At a Glance

Bop down to Orchestra Hall and settle in for an unforgettable Valentine’s Day weekend celebration. Charles Lazarus and his sublime jazz combo offer fresh takes on classic love songs and feel-good originals on the Orchestra Hall stage. It’s cool. It’s funky. It’s the perfect time to find your groove and celebrate love and romance.

Artists

  • Charles Lazarus, trumpet
  • Tommy Barbarella, piano
  • Jeff Bailey, bass
  • David Schmalenberger, drums

Did You Know?

  • Charles Lazarus’s album Lovejoy was recorded at Hideaway Studios, a studio tucked in one of the old Grain Belt Brewery buildings in Northeast Minneapolis.
  • Lazarus’ keyboard player, Tommy Barbarella, played alongside Prince for five years as a member of the New Power Generation.
  • Lazarus made his Carnegie Hall debut when he was just 19 years old as a member of the New York String Orchestra.

Please note: The Minnesota Orchestra does not perform on this program.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sat Feb 13 8pm

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Battleship Potemkin: In Concert with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

Beethoven’s cry for universal community in his Ninth Symphony has echoed throughout history. One hundred years after his death, a remarkable silent film was created in the former Soviet Union, filled with sacrifice, rebellion for a greater cause, and the responsibilities of citizenship. We'll screen the film as the Orchestra performs an extravaganza of famous moments from some of the most popular orchestral works of all time, seamlessly arranged to form a new score produced by Nathan Farrington and Sebastian Chang.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Nathan Farrington and Sebastian Chang, score producers

Did You Know?

  • While this groundbreaking film initially had its own newly-composed score—written by film composer Edmund Meisel—it has no definitive score. Sergei Eisenstein, the film’s director, envisioned music for the film to be rewritten every 20 years to retain relevance to future generations.
  • This new version of Battleship Potemkin features a score that incorporates elements from such beloved pieces as Beethoven's Third Symphony, Mahler's First, Fifth and Sixth Symphonies, and Holst's The Planets.
  • In his quest to manipulate our emotions, and promote Soviet Russia, Eisenstein invented some of the most important techniques in film that still used every day in our TV shows and movies, including the concept of montage.
  • The film’s impact was monumental both inside and outside the Soviet Union, and due to its subject matter it was banned in several countries—including the United Kingdom until 1954.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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The Movies & Music series is made possible by U.S. Bank.

US Bank

Fri Feb 19 8pm

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All Together Now with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

NEW THIS SEASON!

Up-and-coming classical musicians from across the Twin Cities metro area join the Minnesota Orchestra onstage for a special concert. The program begins with Philharmonia Fantastique, an animated short film that uses new and old technology to explore the instruments of an orchestra—going inside the instruments to see how they work—with the music of Mason Bates as an accompaniment. We celebrate our community’s young musicians on the program’s second half as students from the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies and Minnesota Youth Symphonies take the stage in a side-by-side performance with the Minnesota Orchestra.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies
  • Minnesota Youth Symphonies

Did You Know?

  • The Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies are celebrating their 49th season this year, and the organization is made up of more than ten different performing ensembles from all around the metro.
  • American composer Mason Bates won a 2019 Grammy for The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs, an opera he composed with libretto by Mark Campbell about the complex legacy of the Silicon Valley giant.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sat Feb 20 8pm

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Tchaikovsky’s Pathétique Symphony

Program

MAZZOLI
Sinfonia (for Orbiting Spheres)  / 12 min

PROKOFIEV
Violin Concerto No. 2  / 26 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

TCHAIKOVSKY
Symphony No. 6, Pathétique  / 45 min

At a Glance

Audiences and musicians are captivated by conductor Nathalie Stutzmann, and for good reason. One of the world’s leading contraltos, she often sings her direction to the musicians in rehearsal, with inspiring results. “Pure connection,” they say. Song—here in the winds, there in the brass, now in the strings—is in nearly every bar of Tchaikovsky’s final symphony.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • A champion for the new: Though most of Missy Mazzoli’s influences are past composers, she says, “I want to reflect the era that I’m living in now and make music that can only be written now.”
  • Tchaikovsky conducted the premiere of his Sixth Symphony just nine days before his death.
  • A true collaborator, Nathalie Stutzmann understands the value of a good audience to deliver a powerful performance. “If you come in open, relaxed and abandon yourself to what the performers have to give, then we can connect.”

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Thu Feb 25 11am

Fri Feb 26 8pm

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Symphony in 60: Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 6, Pathétique

About Symphony in 60

Symphony in 60 concerts feature classical music's most beloved composers and pieces. This bite-sized concert featuring Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 6 begins at 6pm–plus, there are happy hour specials and a post-concert onstage reception with Minnesota Orchestra musicians. Come as you are and enjoy the best of orchestral music!

Program

TCHAIKOVSKY
Symphony No. 6, Pathétique  / 45 min

At a Glance

One of Tchaikovsky’s final pieces, and the last music he conducted in his all-too-short lifetime. Did he know it would be his swan song? Debate about that has raged since its 1893 premiere. Regardless, he poured himself into the Sixth Symphony like nothing else he’d ever created, and made it a 45-minute journey into the tenderest parts of the human heart.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s Sixth Symphony have appeared in almost a dozen different movies and were even featured in one episode of Nickelodeon’s animated show Ren & Stimpy.
  • Tchaikovsky was reticent to have his voice recorded. When asked to play something on the piano or say something for a recording, Tchaikovsky allegedly replied, “I am a bad pianist and my voice is raspy. Why should one eternalize it?”
  • Symphony in 60 gives you even more ways to enjoy your night out. $5 happy hours, tasty treats and a chance to meet the musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sat Feb 27 6pm

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Valčuha Conducts Bluebeard's Castle

Program

JANÁČEK
Taras Bulba, Rhapsody for Orchestra  / 23 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

BARTÓK
Bluebeard's Castle  / 59 min

At a Glance

As soon as Prince Bluebeard brings his new bride home to his castle, she demands to know what lies behind seven mysterious locked doors. Bartok’s Bluebeard’s Castle unfolds from there, in a two-character, one-act operatic masterpiece. To sing it, we’ve invited Gábor Bretz, one of the most supple and soaring baritone voices of our day, and mezzo Michelle DeYoung, whose artistry The New York Times praises as “powerful, warm, and seductive.”

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Juraj Valčuha, conductor
  • Michelle DeYoung, mezzo
  • Gábor Bretz, baritone

Did You Know?

  • Bluebeard’s Castle, an intensely dramatic operatic work, offers a stirring interpretation of the French folktale Bluebeard, where Bluebeard’s new wife, Judith, explores the dark and unsettling stories of the castle (including those of Bluebeard’s previous wives) for the first time.
  • In terms of vocal range, Bluebeard’s Castle is particularly taxing for the mezzo. Three-time Grammy winner Michelle DeYoung is certainly up for the challenge and has previously performed this role.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Mar 5 8pm

Sat Mar 6 8pm

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Rick Steves’ Europe–A Symphonic Journey with the Minnesota Orchestra

At a Glance

Travel writer and television host Rick Steves is coming to Orchestra Hall and is giving you a front-row seat to some of the most iconic sights and sounds in Europe. From Italy, England, Austria, Norway and beyond, Steves pairs personal photos and breathtaking video with beloved classical music selections by Wagner, Smetana, Verdi, Elgar, Grieg, Saint-Saëns and Beethoven on this historical and musical tour of Europe.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Sarah Hicks, conductor
  • Rick Steves, host

Did You Know?

  • Read the fine print: Steves' first self-published his first book with a disclaimer stating: “Anyone caught reprinting any material herein for any purpose whatsoever will be thanked profusely.”
  • Born into music: Steves’ dad was a piano technician and high school band teacher.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Mar 12 8pm

Sat Mar 13 2pm

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Mahler’s Third Symphony

Program

MAHLER
Symphony No. 3 / 92 min

At a Glance

Applause is coming from all over the world for the Orchestra’s Mahler symphony cycle. Here is Mahler’s Third, voted one of the 10 greatest symphonies of all time in BBC Music Magazine. Sasha Cooke was breathtaking in performances of the Second, and in the Third she sings one of Mahler’s most hauntingly beautiful moments: “Man, take heed. Deep is the world’s pain, but deeper still is joy.”

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Sasha Cooke, mezzo
  • Women of the Minnesota Chorale
  • Minnesota Boychoir

Did You Know?

  • You know you’ve made it when: A reference to Mahler’s Third Symphony appears in Prince’s song, Good Love.
  • The Minnesota Boychoir is celebrating its 59th season and has performed with ensembles from the Minnesota Orchestra to the Baltimore Symphony to the Prague Philharmonic.
  • Mahler’s epic Third is almost two symphonies in one. Six total movements in two different groups (plus a host of voices) makes this a monumental piece of music.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Mar 18 11am

Fri Mar 19 8pm

Sat Mar 20 8pm

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Vänskä Conducts Brahms Symphony No. 3

Program

HILLBORG
Through Lost Landscapes  / 13 min

GINASTERA
Harp Concerto / 21 min

WALKER
Lyric for Strings / 6 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

BRAHMS
Symphony No. 3  / 33 min

At a Glance

Minneapolis’ Grace Roepke is the first harpist ever to win the Grand Prize of the national Young Artist Competition put on by the Friends of the Minnesota Orchestra. Alongside her exciting debut is the U.S. premiere of Through Lost Landscapes, an evocative new work from Sweden’s Anders Hillborg, and George Walker’s tranquil Lyric for Strings. Brahms’ Third Symphony, his most noble and deeply personal work, caps the concert.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Grace Roepke, harp

Did You Know?

  • Swedish composer Anders Hillborg began his musical career in pop music, playing keyboards for a band that played music from artists like Chicago, Elton John, and Blood, Sweat and Tears.
  • Music critic (and Johannes Brahms’ friend) Eduard Hanslick referred to Brahms’ Third Symphony as artistically “nearly perfect.”
  • In an interview with Southwest News Media, Young Artist Competition winner Grace Roepke said, “One of the biggest misconceptions is that [harpists] can’t play loud.” Osmo Vänskä, one of the competition’s judges, said he was impressed by how Roepke’s sound filled Orchestra Hall.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Apr 8 11am

Fri Apr 9 8pm

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Symphony in 60: Brahms Symphony No. 3

About Symphony in 60

Symphony in 60 concerts feature classical music's most beloved composers and pieces. This bite-sized concert featuring Brahms' Symphony No. 3 begins at 6pm–plus, there are happy hour specials and a post-concert onstage reception with Minnesota Orchestra musicians. Come as you are and enjoy the best of orchestral music!

Program

BRAHMS
Symphony No. 3  / 33 min

At a Glance

Ask just about any conductor which of the four Brahms symphonies is their favorite, and you'll be money ahead if you bet on the Third. This is Brahms at his best: touching melody, driving rhythm, and the richest Romantic-era harmonies. In a compact Symphony in 60 setting, you'll hear this beauty, then be on with your Saturday night on the town.

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Music critic (and Johannes Brahms’ friend) Eduard Hanslick referred to Brahms’ Third Symphony as artistically “nearly perfect.”
  • A symphony worth fighting over: An intense public feud between Johannes Brahms and Richard Wagner led many of Wagner followers to try and interfere with the Third Symphony's premiere.
  • Brahms the perfectionist: Before publishing his First and Second String Quartets, Brahms claimed he destroyed about 20 others because he was unsatisfied by their quality.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sat Apr 10 6pm

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Mozart, Prokofiev and Strauss

Program

MOZART
Overture to The Marriage of Figaro  / 4 min

PROKOFIEV
Piano Concerto No. 3  / 28 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

R. STRAUSS
Sinfonia domestica / 44 min

At a Glance

Simon Trpčeski’s concerts routinely leave audiences searching for words to describe the dazzling experience. Though London’s Telegraph did it nicely recently: “A performance that was extraordinary in its capacity to expose the music’s very heart.” For you, he’ll perform Prokofiev’s fireworks-as-music Third Concerto. We bookend this with the grace of Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro Overture, and the full-orchestra virtuosity of Strauss’ Sinfonia domestica, which the composer described as a “partly lyrical, partly humorous” day-in-the-life depiction of his household.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Marc Albrecht, conductor
  • Simon Trpčeski, piano

Did You Know?

  • The Viennese premiere of Strauss’ Sinfonia domestica was conducted by Gustav Mahler.
  • In addition to touring as a concert pianist, Simon Trpčeski launched a project celebrating the folk music of his home country of Macedonia.
  • Sergei Prokofiev himself played the piano at the premiere of his Piano Concerto No. 3 with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1921.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri Apr 16 8pm

Sat Apr 17 8pm

Sun Apr 18 2pm

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Chamber Music: REFLECTIONS

At a Glance

Minnesota Orchestra musicians come together in small ensembles to perform cherished classics and innovative new music on Sunday afternoons in the Target Atrium.

Did You Know?

  • Reflection on the past can create a spark that leads to great works of art, including these pieces for chamber ensembles by Du Yun, Dmitri Shostakovich, Jean Françaix and Johannes Brahms.
  • Tattooed in Snow, a work written in 2015 by New York-based composer Du Yun, explores the delicate art forms of sand and snow sculpture through the lens of a string quartet.
  • Yun was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Classical Composition in 2019 and was recently selected by The Washington Post as one of the top 35 female composers.
  • For his unique Trio for Violin, Horn and Piano, Brahms reflected on his own past and decided to write a piece that featured the three instruments that he himself knew how to play.
  • Shostakovich’s Piano Quintet earned him the State Stalin Prize in 1941, an award that came with one of the largest cash prizes in chamber music history at the time.

Program and Artists

YUN
Tattooed in Snow / 15 min

SHOSTAKOVICH
Quintet for Piano and Strings / 32 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

FRANÇAIX
Divertissement for Bassoon and String Quintet / 15 min

BRAHMS
Trio for Violin, Horn and Piano / 35 min

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

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Sun Apr 25 4:30pm

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Bartók and Debussy

Program

BARTÓK
Violin Concerto No. 2  / 36 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

DEBUSSY
Suite from Pelléas and Mélisande / 22 min

RAVEL
La Valse / 13 min

At a Glance

Presented for the first time at Orchestra Hall, Debussy’s early 20th-century operatic masterwork Pelléas and Mélisande is rendered in this sensuous concert suite. Beautiful French repertoire like Debussy’s is a specialty of Fabien Gabel, the charismatic leader of the Quebec Symphony. In his Orchestra Hall debut, Gabel also conducts Bartok’s Second Violin Concerto, featuring Isabelle Faust, as well as Ravel’s whirling, swirling La Valse.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Fabien Gabel, conductor
  • Isabelle Faust, violin

Did You Know?

  • Ravel’s La Valse is billed as a choreographic poem, and though most often experienced as a concert piece, it was originally drawn up as a ballet.
  • A happy accident? German violinist Isabelle Faust’s first violin lesson was at five years old when she accompanied her father to his lessons after he decided he wanted to learn to play. After that, she was hooked.
  • Debussy’s opera Pelléas and Mélisande tells the story of a heated love triangle drenched in mystery, passion and tragedy.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Apr 29 11am

Fri Apr 30 8pm

Sat May 1 8pm

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MusicMakers

At a Glance

Innovation center stage! We’ve asked the most exciting emerging orchestral composers in America today to send us their most imaginative work. From that inspiring collection we proudly share with you this concert, the culmination of the Orchestra’s 18th annual Composer Institute.

Bold, colorful, tender and always surprising, the music proclaims with confidence that tomorrow’s orchestra is in superb hands. Come hear the future!

Artists

Did You Know?

  • Experience a perfect night out with $5 happy hour, decadent local eats and a chance to meet and chat with Minnesota Orchestra musicians and tonight’s featured composers.
  • If you’ve ever been curious about the composition creative process, you do not want to miss this. You get a front row seat to experience how these up-and-comers in the classical world are forging classical music’s future.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri May 14 8pm

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König, Grieg and Schumann

Program

GRIEG
Piano Concerto / 30 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

SCHUMANN
Symphony No. 3, Rhenish / 32 min

At a Glance

When conductor Christoph König was a young boy, he trained in one of Germany’s celebrated boychoirs, quickly added piano and then took up the conductor’s baton—all with remarkable results. In his first Orchestra Hall concert, he leads Schumann’s Third—nearly every bar of which is full of melody inspired by the Rhine River. Russian-American pianist Olga Kern also makes her Minnesota Orchestra debut, performing Grieg’s Piano Concerto.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Christoph König, conductor
  • Olga Kern, piano

Did You Know?

  • Schumann’s Third Symphony is also known as the Rhenish Symphony and was inspired by a sublime trip the composer took to Rhineland, Germany with celebrated composer and concert pianist (and wife), Clara.
  • Not a typo: As a young boy, Christoph König sang with Dresdner Kreuzchor, a Dresden boychoir that just celebrated its 800th anniversary in 2016!
  • Sending the ladder back down: In 2016, pianist Olga Kern launched her own international piano competition aimed at providing a “venue for young pianists to develop an international career.”

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Fri May 21 8pm

Sat May 22 8pm

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Manze, Gomyo and Tchaikovsky

Program

BACEWICZ
Concerto for String Orchestra

TCHAIKOVSKY
Violin Concerto

INTERMISSION / 20 min

SHOSTAKOVICH
Symphony No. 5

At a Glance

A celebration of strings, beginning with the buoyant Concerto for String Orchestra by Grażyna Bacewicz. It holds an echo of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos, and its 1948 premiere made her a leading composer of post-war Poland. Star violinist Karen Gomyo graces the party with the most beloved of all the great 19th-century concertos, by Tchaikovsky. And violinist-turned-conductor Andrew Manze concludes with Shostakovich’s triumphant Fifth Symphony.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Andrew Manze, conductor
  • Karen Gomyo, violin

Did You Know?

  • Fit for a feast: Tchaikovsky’s superlative Violin Concerto was featured in the soundtrack to Jiro Dreams of Sushi, the transfixing documentary about an 85-year-old man who owns one of the best sushi restaurants in the entire world.
  • In addition to stunning interpretations in the classical world, violinist Karen Gomyo also has a passion (and an immense talent) for Nuevo Tango music.
  • Grażyna Bacewicz is one of Poland’s cultural treasures and even appeared on a stamp from the Poczta Polska (the Polish Post) on what would have been her 100th birthday.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu May 27 11am

Fri May 28 8pm

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Nordic Fire: Osmo Vänskä and Truls Mørk

Program

FAGERLUND
Ignite / 28 min

PROKOFIEV
Sinfonia concertante for Cello and Orchestra  / 37 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

NIELSEN
Symphony No. 4, The Inextinguishable  / 36 min

At a Glance

What a thrill to welcome Truls Mørk to our stage again! The acclaimed cellist was last here nearly 20 years ago and moved Minnesotans with his white-hot playing. In this much-anticipated return he brings the cellist’s supreme challenge, Prokofiev’s Sinfonia concertante. Speaking of white-hot, musical flames dance throughout Ignite by Finnish composer Sebastian Fagerlund, and in Nielsen’s Fourth, The Inextinguishable.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Truls Mørk, cello

Did You Know?

  • Following an 18-month rehab and hiatus after what he thought was a career-ending paralysis, Norwegian cellist Truls Mørk was able to return to the stage and continue an illustrious professional career.
  • Of his creative process, Finnish composer Sebastian Fagerlund says the compositional work “requires me in a way to fade myself out,” and let the music speak for itself.
  • While he wasn’t celebrated during his lifetime, Danish composer Carl Nielsen later became one of the country’s most beloved cultural figures and even appeared on Denmark’s 100-kroner mark from 1999 until it was taken out of circulation in 2010.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Jun 10 11am

Fri Jun 11 8pm

Sat Jun 12 8pm

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Chamber Music: CHARACTER

At a Glance

Minnesota Orchestra musicians come together in small ensembles to perform cherished classics and innovative new music on Sunday afternoons in the Auditorium.

Did You Know?

  • The final concert of the 2020-21 Chamber Music series teems with character and concludes with Louis Spohr’s Nonet, especially written to showcase the individual characters of its nine featured instruments.
  • Andrew Norman, a participant in the 2004 Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute, is a Grammy-nominated composer and a member of the faculty at the USC Thornton School of Music. Gran Turismo was inspired by the unlikely combination of Baroque string playing, Italian futurist art and a car-racing video game.
  • Façade began as an at-home project combining the artistic talents of British poet Edith Sitwell—whose poems were considered abstract, exotic and dramatic—and the young composer William Walton, who found himself “adopted” into the Sitwell family while studying at Oxford University.
  • A child prodigy, composer-pianist Jean Françaix began writing music at the age of ten and was mentored and championed from a very young age by two other French musical geniuses, Maurice Ravel and Nadia Boulanger.

Program and Artists

FRANÇAIX
Woodwind Quartet / 11 min

NORMAN
Gran Turismo for Eight Virtuoso Violinists / 9 min

WALTON
Suite from Façade / 17 min

INTERMISSION / 20 min

VAUGHAN WILLIAMS
Phantasy Quintet / 15 min

SPOHR
Nonet for Strings and Winds in F major / 28 min

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Sun Jun 13 2pm

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Season Finale: Beethoven Missa Solemnis

Program

FRANK 
Pachamama Meets an Ode  / 10 min

BEETHOVEN
Missa Solemnis  / 81 min

At a Glance

Though Beethoven called this his Solemn Mass, it bursts with moments of ecstatic joy. It comes from the same time as his Ninth Symphony when his powers were visionary. As a prelude and pairing to it, one of today’s most acclaimed contemporary composers Gabriela Lena Frank has created Pachamama Meets an Ode, co-commissioned by Classical Movements as part of a consortium that includes the Minnesota Orchestra.

Artists

  • Minnesota Orchestra
  • Osmo Vänskä, conductor
  • Carolyn Sampson, soprano
  • Carolyn Sproule, mezzo
  • Barry Banks, tenor
  • James Rutherford, bass-baritone
  • Minnesota Chorale

Did You Know?

  • While Beethoven isn’t typically known for large-scale liturgical works, the mass Missa Solemnis is considered one of the greats for the genre, up there with the likes of Bach.
  • Join the Minnesota Orchestra for an on stage reception immediately following the concert.
  • Gabriela Lena Frank composes for Yo-Yo Ma’s Silkroad Ensemble and contributed a work for their 2009 Grammy-nominated record, Off the Map.

Accessibility at Orchestra Hall

Assisted listening devices available Large print program available Wheelchair seating availableService dogs welcomePlease refrain from using strong perfumes and colognes

Thu Jun 17 11am

Fri Jun 18 8pm

Sat Jun 19 8pm