Madison, Wis. April 10, 2018 – The Madison Symphony Orchestra’s (MSO) 2018–2019 Silver Anniversary Season invites audiences to commemorate 25 years of great music with John DeMain. Subscriptions are available now, and single tickets for all concerts go on sale to the public Saturday, August 18, 2018.

MSO Music Director John DeMain has created a 25th anniversary season filled with music as momentous as the milestone it celebrates. “There are several things that were important to me for my 25th year with our orchestra. One thing that is close to me personally, is that we’re celebrating the 100th anniversary of Leonard Bernstein’s birth, along with the 80th birthday of the great American composer and Madisonian, John Harbison. As I am an American musician, I’ve included in this season a strong American presence. In addition, I’ve created a season that includes so many of my personal favorite orchestral works and many of my favorite soloists as well. Every concert for me is a celebration of my time here in Madison with the beautiful musicians and soloists that make up the great Madison Symphony Orchestra. I hope you’ll join us for this exciting anniversary year.”

2018–2019 subscription series concerts begin in 2018, featuring many guest performers and new concert themes such as:

“Ax is Back!” (Sept. 28-30) is a collaboration between John and one of the world’s greatest pianists, Emanuel Ax. Listen to Ax perform Brahms’ Concerto No. 2 and the MSO performing Higdon’s Fanfare Ritmico and excerpts from one of John’s favorite ballets, the Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet Suite.

“Epic Romance” (Oct. 19-21) features cellist Zuill Bailey performing Elgar’s Cello Concerto and the dynamic guest conductor, Tania Miller, leading the MSO in Michael Oesterle’s Home and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5.

“Remembering Lenny” (Nov. 9-11) celebrates 100 years of Leonard Bernstein and John’s unique work with this great American musician. The first half of the concert celebrates Lenny the composer in three works: Overture to Candide, Three Dance Episodes from On the Town and finally the MSO’s first performance of Symphony No. 2, Age of Anxiety. Cherished Madison favorite Christopher Taylor will perform Symphony No. 2’s exciting piano part. The second half of the concert features Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7, the last piece Lenny conducted.

“A Madison Symphony Christmas” (Nov. 30-Dec. 2) is the beloved kickoff to the holiday season. Guest artists Cecelia Violetta Lopez, Soprano, and Kyle Ketelsen, Baritone, join John DeMain, the MSO, the Madison Symphony Chorus, Madison Youth Choirs, and Mount Zion Gospel Choir on stage for the family-friendly tradition.

The MSO’s 18-19 season also includes the popular multimedia production of Beyond the Score®, Mendelssohn Symphony No. 4: Why Italy? Live actors and multimedia projections in the first half are followed by the MSO performing the entire work in the second half. Joining the orchestra are American Players Theatre actors Nate Burger, Sarah Day, and Jonathan Smoots. The performance takes place on January 20*.

“Pictures at an Exhibition” (Feb. 15-17) explores the rich colors of the orchestra in Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition (arranged by Ravel), as well as the satirical The Most Often Used Chords composed by Madison resident John Harbison. The MSO will also be joined by violinist James Ehnes — one of John’s favorites, to present Brahms’ Violin Concerto

“Orchestral Brilliance, Three Virtuosi” (March 8-10) throws focus on the remarkable musicians of the Madison Symphony, both collectively and individually. The evening begins with the MSO playing Schubert’s Symphony No. 8, Unfinished and then moves on to feature three MSO soloists. Hear Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2 with concertmaster Naha Greenholtz, Debussy’s Rhapsody for Clarinet and Orchestra with principal clarinetist JJ Koh, and Vaughan Williams’ Concerto for Tuba and Orchestra with principal tuba player Joshua Biere. The concert concludes with a crowd favorite, An American in Paris by George Gershwin, chosen by John as a vehicle to showcase the orchestra in all its brilliance.

“An Auspicious Debut, Marc-Andre Hamelin” (April 12-14) features two of the greatest German composers and two great French impressionists. Hear Grammy Award-winning pianist Marc-André Hamelin and Mozart’s Symphony No. 38, Prague, Strauss’ BurleskePiano Concerto in G by Ravel and Debussy’s La Mer — a tonal piece that places ultimate demands on the orchestra and creates and aural thrill for the audience.

“Symphony of a Thousand” (May 3-5) brings the 18-19 season to an epic conclusion with Mahler’s Symphony No. 8. Join the Madison Symphony Orchestra, Madison Symphony Chorus, and soloists Alexandra LoBianco, Soprano; Emily Birsan, Soprano; Emily Pogorelc, Soprano; Milena Kitic, Mezzo-Soprano; Julie Miller, Mezzo-Soprano; Clay Hilley, Tenor; Michael Redding, Baritone; and Morris Robinson, Bass. John began his career 25 years ago with Mahler’s first symphony and excitedly celebrates his silver anniversary with this show stopping epic.

*Advance tickets for Beyond the Score® are available only to MSO 18–19 season subscribers prior to single tickets going on sale to the general public on Saturday, August 18, 2018. Beyond the Score® is a production of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Gerard McBurney, Creative Director for Beyond the Beyond the Score®

Learn more about the 2018–2019 Silver Anniversary Symphony Season.

View the detailed Press Release.

Link to Season Photos.

The Madison Symphony Orchestra celebrates its 93rd season in 2018–2019 and its 25th season under the leadership of Music Director John DeMain. The MSO has grown to be one of America’s leading regional orchestras, providing Madison and south-central Wisconsin with cultural and educational opportunities to interact with great masterworks and top-tier guest artists from around the world. Discover more.

Contact: Peter Rodgers, Director of Marketing
Phone: (608) 260-8680 x226
Mobile: (415) 713-0235
Email: prodgers@madisonsymphony.org

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