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François-Xavier Roth conducts Méhul, Mozart and Beethoven featuring pianist Benjamin Grosvenor

Boston Symphony Orchestra

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Due to the weather forecast for the greater Boston area, the Boston Symphony Orchestra performance scheduled for Thursday, January 4, 8PM, has been postponed to Sunday, January 7 at 5pm. Ticket holders may attend at that time, or exchange their tickets for the Tuesday, January 9, 8pm performance. Please call SymphonyCharge at 888-266-1200 for assistance. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your ongoing patronage.

Featured Performers

François-Xavier Roth, conductor
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A restlessly intelligent maverick
Tim Ashley, The Guardian

Under Roth's needle-sharp direction these interpretations dazzle … with rhythmic verve, insouciant accentuation, energy, humour and elan. Virtuosity and verve shine from every bar.
Richard Morrison, The Times

François-Xavier Roth (born Paris, 1971) is one of today's most charismatic and enterprising conductors. Since 2015, he has been General Music Director of the City of Cologne, leading both the Gürzenich Orchestra and the Opera. In 2003, he founded Les Siècles, an innovative orchestra performing contrasting and colourful programmes on modern and period instruments, often within the same concert.

With a reputation for inventive programming, his incisive approach and inspiring leadership are valued around the world. He is working with leading orchestras including the Berlin Philharmonic and Staatskapelle, Royal Concertgebouw, Boston Symphony and Zurich Tonhalle. With the London Symphony he is curating a two-season series exploring the musical legacy of the post-Romantic period.

With Les Siècles, he has given concerts in France, Italy, Germany, England and Japan. They gave centenary performances of The Rite of Spring, on original instruments, at the BBC Proms and the Alte Oper, Frankfurt, and subsequent danced performances with the Pina Bausch and Dominique Brun companies. Their widely acclaimed recording of the work was awarded a German Record Critics' Prize in 2016. The first CD of their Ravel series with Harmonia Mundi will be released in April 2017.

His second Cologne opera season features a Ravel double bill of L'enfant et les sortilèges / L'heure espagnole, a revival and tour of Berlioz' Benvenuto Cellini and Mozart's Le nozze di Figaro. With the Gürzenich Orchestra, he continues a focus on the composer Philippe Manoury, from whom the orchestra has commissioned a trilogy of works, and led a successful tour of Asia in February 2017.

As Principal Conductor (2011-16), he led the SWR Sinfonieorchester Freiburg & Baden-Baden in visits to London (BBC Proms), Hamburg and the Lucerne and Berlin Festivals. They performed and recorded a cycle of the symphonic poems of Richard Strauss, premiered works by Yann Robin, Georg-Friedrich Haas and Simon Steen-Anderson and collaborated with composers Wolfgang Rihm, Jörg Widmann and Helmut Lachenmann.

Engagement with new audiences and new music are an essential part of François-Xavier Roth's work. He is conductor of the ground-breaking LSO Panufnik Composers Scheme and, with the Festival Berlioz and Les Siècles, he founded the Jeune Orchestre Européen Hector Berlioz, an orchestra- academy with its own collection of period instruments. Roth and Les Siècles devised Presto!, their own television series for France 2, attracting weekly audiences of over three million. The Gürzenich Orchestra's Ohrenauf! youth programme recently received a Junge Ohren Produktion Award.

François-Xavier Roth, conductor Benjamin Grosvenor, piano
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British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor is internationally recognized for his electrifying performances and insightful interpretations. His virtuosic command over the most strenuous technical complexities underpins the remarkable depth and understanding of his musicianship. Benjamin is renowned for his distinctive sound, described as 'poetic and gently ironic, brilliant yet clear-minded, intelligent but not without humour, all translated through a beautifully clear and singing touch' (The Independent) making him one of the most sought-after young pianists in the world.

Benjamin first came to prominence as the outstanding winner of the Keyboard Final of the 2004 BBC Young Musician Competition at the age of eleven. Since then, he has become an internationally regarded pianist and in 2016 was announced as the inaugural recipient of The Ronnie and Lawrence Ackman Classical Piano Prize with the New York Philharmonic. He has performed with orchestras including the London Philharmonic, RAI Torino, Philharmonia Orchestra, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester, Tokyo Symphony, and in venues such as the Royal Festival Hall, Barbican

Centre, Singapore's Victoria Hall, The Frick Collection and Carnegie Hall. Benjamin has worked with numerous esteemed conductors including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Jiří Bělohlávek, Semyon Bychkov, Andrey Boreyko, Sir Mark Elder, Alan Gilbert, Vladimir Jurowski, Andrew Litton, Andrew Manze, Ludovic Morlot, Kent Nagano, Alexander Shelley, Thomas Søndergård, Jac van Steen, John Storgards, Gabor Takacs-Nagy, Michael Tilson Thomas and François-Xavier Roth.

At just nineteen, Benjamin performed with the BBC Symphony Orchestra at the First Night of the 2011 BBC Proms. Following re-invitations in 2012 for a performance with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Charles Dutoit and in 2014 for a recital and Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1 with the BBC Philharmonic and Gianandrea Noseda Benjamin appeared in 2015 at the Last Night of the Proms performing Shostakovich's Piano Concerto No. 2 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Marin Alsop.

Recent and future highlights include engagements with the Cleveland and Hallé Orchestras, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Atlanta, San Francisco, Singapore, Melbourne, Washington National and KBS Symphony Orchestras. Major recital dates include Vienna Konzerthaus, Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall, Cologne Philharmonie, Konzerthaus Berlin, the Lucerne Festival, La Roque d'Antheron, International Piano Series at the Southbank Centre as well as his first tour of South America. The forthcoming season sees Benjamin embark on new collaborations with the Filarmonica della Scala and Riccardo Chailly, with whom he will perform Liszt's Piano Concerto No. 1, the Tonhalle-Orchestra Zurich and François-Xavier Roth, the Orchestra of St Luke's and Sir Roger Norrington, and with the London Symphony Orchestra for a performance of Brahms' Piano Concerto No. 1 under the baton of Alpesh Chauhan.

Benjamin enjoys incorporating chamber music collaborations into his schedule, including performances with the Escher, Elias and Endellion String Quartets, chamber ensembles of the Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal and the Naples Philharmonic, and at venues such as Paris' Musée du Louvre and London's Queen Elizabeth Hall. Since the 2015-16 season Benjamin has been invited to participate in the prestigious "Junge Wilde" series by Konzerthaus Dortmund, where over the course of three years he will perform on a number of occasions.

In 2011 Benjamin signed to Decca Classics, and in doing so has become the youngest British musician ever to sign to the label, and the first British pianist to sign to the label in almost 60 years. Benjamin's 2014 release Dances, a recital album that presents a historically and stylistically varied offering of works influenced by dance, has been described as 'breathtaking' (The Guardian), offering "performance after performance of surpassing brilliance and character" (Gramophone Magazine) and won the BBC Music Magazine Instrumental Award 2015. Autumn 2016 sees the release of Benjamin's third recital disc for Decca, Homages.

During his sensational career to date, Benjamin has received Gramophone's 'Young Artist of the Year and 'Instrumental Award', a Classic Brits 'Critics' Award', UK 'Critics' Circle Award' for Exceptional Young Talent and a Diapason d'Or 'Jeune Talent' Award. He has been featured in two BBC television documentaries, BBC Breakfast and The Andrew Marr Show, as well as in CNN's Human to Hero series. The youngest of five brothers, Benjamin began playing the piano aged 6. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music with Christopher Elton and Daniel-Ben Pienaar, where he graduated in 2012 with the 'Queen's Commendation for Excellence' and in 2016 was made a Fellow. Benjamin has been supported since 2013 by EFG International, the widely respected global private banking group.

Benjamin Grosvenor, piano
Program Notes Audio
MÉHUL - Overture to The Amazons, or The Founding of Thebes (8 min)
MOZART - Piano Concerto No. 21 in C, K.467 (29 min)
BEETHOVEN - Symphony No. 5 (33 min)
Concert Preview - Full Program Notes
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