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The 2019-20 season, Andris Nelsons’ sixth as the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Ray and Maria Stata Music Director, marks his fifth anniversary in that position. Named Musical America’s 2018 Artist of the Year, Mr. Nelsons leads fifteen of the BSO’s twenty-six weeks of concerts this season, ranging from repertoire favorites by Beethoven, Dvoˇrák, Gershwin, Grieg, Mozart, Mahler, Rachmaninoff, Ravel, and Tchaikovsky to world and American premieres of BSO-commissioned works from Eric Nathan, Betsy Jolas, Arturs Maskats, and HK Gruber. The season also brings the continuation of his complete Shostakovich symphony cycle with the orchestra, and collaborations with an impressive array of guest artists, including a concert performance of Tristan und Isolde, Act III—one of three BSO programs he will also conduct at Carnegie Hall—with Jonas Kaufmann and Emily Magee in the title roles. In addition, February 2020 brings a major tour to Asia in which Maestro Nelsons and the BSO give their first concerts together in Seoul, Taipei, Hong Kong, and Shanghai.
In February 2018, Andris Nelsons became Gewandhauskapellmeister of the Gewandhausorchester (GHO) Leipzig, in which capacity he also brings the BSO and GHO together for a unique multi-dimensional alliance including a BSO/GHO Musician Exchange program and an exchange component within each orchestra’s acclaimed academy for advanced music studies. A major highlight of the BSO/GHO Alliance is a focus on complementary programming, through which the BSO celebrates “Leipzig Week in Boston” and the GHO celebrates “Boston Week in Leipzig,” thereby highlighting each other’s musical traditions through uniquely programmed concerts, chamber music performances, archival exhibits, and lecture series. For this season’s “Leipzig Week in Boston,” under Maestro Nelsons’ leadership in November, the entire Gewandhausorchester Leipzig comes to Symphony Hall for joint concerts with the BSO as well as two concerts of its own.
In summer 2015, following his first season as music director, Andris Nelsons’ contract with the BSO was extended through the 2021-22 season. In November 2017, he and the orchestra toured Japan together for the first time. They have so far made three European tours together: immediately following the 2018 Tanglewood season, when they played concerts in London, Hamburg, Berlin, Leipzig, Vienna, Lucerne, Paris, and Amsterdam; in May 2016, a tour that took them to eight cities in Germany, Austria, and Luxembourg; and, after the 2015 Tanglewood season, a tour that took them to major European capitals and the Lucerne, Salzburg, and Grafenegg festivals.
The fifteenth music director in the history of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Andris Nelsons made his BSO debut at Carnegie Hall in March 2011, his Tanglewood debut in July 2012, and his BSO subscription series debut in January 2013. His recordings with the BSO, all made live in concert at Symphony Hall, include the complete Brahms symphonies on BSO Classics; Grammy-winning recordings on Deutsche Grammophon of Shostakovich’s symphonies 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, and 11 (The Year 1905) as part of a complete Shostakovich symphony cycle for that label; and a recent two-disc set pairing Shostakovich’s symphonies 6 and 7 (Leningrad). This November, a new release on Naxos features Andris Nelsons and the orchestra in the world premieres of BSO-commissioned works by Timo Andres, Eric Nathan, Sean Shepherd, and George Tsontakis. Under an exclusive contract with Deutsche Grammophon, Andris Nelsons is also recording the complete Bruckner symphonies with the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and the complete Beethoven symphonies with the Vienna Philharmonic.
During the 2019-20 season, Andris Nelsons continues his ongoing collaborations with the Vienna Philharmonic. Throughout his career, he has also established regular collaborations with the Berlin Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam, and has been a regular guest at the Bayreuth Festival and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden.
Born in Riga in 1978 into a family of musicians, Andris Nelsons began his career as a trumpeter in the Latvian National Opera Orchestra before studying conducting. He was music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra from 2008 to 2015, principal conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie in Herford, Germany, from 2006 to 2009, and music director of Latvian National Opera from 2003 to 2007.
Andris Nelsons, conductor
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Born in London in 1971, Thomas Adès studied piano and
composition at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and read
music at King's College, Cambridge. Renowned as both a
composer and a performer he works regularly with the world's
leading opera companies and festivals.
Recent conducting engagements include a tour with the Britten
Sinfonia, concerts with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and the
Gulbenkian Orchestra as part of his Gulbenkian Foundation
Residency, the London Symphony and Sao Paulo State Symphony
Orchestras, his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the
Los Angeles Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony
Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra,
the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, the BBC, Finnish and
Danish Radio Symphony Orchestras, the Birmingham Contemporary Music
Group (whose Music Director he was between 1998 and 2000), the
London Sinfonietta, Ensemble Modern and the Athelas Ensemble.
He recently conducted productions of The Rake's Progress at the
Royal Opera House Covent Garden and Zurich Opera. His most
recent piano engagements include a recital at Carnegie Hall with
Ian Bostridge, and an appearance with Alan Gilbert and the New York
Philharmonic. In 2010 he undertook a piano recital tour that
included Carnegie Hall, and London's Barbican Centre featured the
premiere of his new piano work Concert Paraphrase from Powder Her
Face. 2010/11 saw Adès return to Australia as an artist in
residence at the Melbourne Festival. Future plans include
concerts with the Accademia Santa Cecilia in Rome, Barry's "The
Importance of Being Earnest" with the Birmingham Contemporary Music
Group, and a piano recital at the Festival de Saint Denis.
Between 1993 and 1995 he was Composer in Association with the
Hallé Orchestra, which resulted in The Origin of the Harp (1994)
and These Premises Are Alarmed for the opening of the Bridgewater
Hall in 1996. Asyla (1997) was a Feeney Trust commission for Sir
Simon Rattle and the CBSO who performed it at Symphony Hall in
August 1998 in Rattle's last concert as Music Director.
From 1999-2008 he was Artistic Director of the
Adès' first opera, Powder Her Face (commissioned by Almeida Opera
for the Cheltenham Festival in 1995), has been performed all around
the world, was televised by Channel Four, and is available on a DVD
as well as an EMI CD. Most of the composer's music has been
recorded by EMI, with whom Adès has a contract as composer, pianist
and conductor. Adès' second opera, The Tempest, was commissioned by
the Royal Opera House and was premiered under the baton of the
composer to great critical acclaim in February 2004. It was revived
at Covent Garden in 2007 - again with the composer conducting and
to a sold-out house - and has also been performed in Copenhagen,
Strasbourg and Santa Fe. Recently released to outstanding reviews,
The Tempest is also available on an EMI CD and in France, the disc
was recently awarded the prestigious Diapason d'Or de l'année and
the 2010 Classical Brit Award for Composer of the Year. In
September 2005 his violin concerto, Concentric Paths, written for
Anthony Marwood, was premiered at the Berliner Festspiele and the
BBC Proms, with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe under his baton.
His second orchestral work for Simon Rattle, Tevot, (2007) was
commissioned by the Berliner Philharmoniker and Carnegie
Appointed to the Richard and Barbara Debs Composer Chair at
Carnegie Hall for 2007/8, he was featured as composer, conductor
and pianist throughout that season. Adès' most recent works
include a 'Piano concerto with moving image' entitled In Seven
Days, a collaboration with video artist Tal Rosner, commissioned by
the Los Angeles Philharmonic and London's Southbank Centre and
Lieux Retrouvés, a work for 'cello and piano written for Steven
Isserlis and commissioned by Aldeburgh Festival and Wigmore
Adès' music has attracted numerous awards and prizes, including
the prestigious Grawemeyer Award (in 2000, for Asyla), of which he
is the youngest ever recipient.
Thomas Adès, piano
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The multifaceted pianist Kirill Gerstein is rapidly ascending
into classical music's highest ranks. With a masterful technique,
discerning intelligence, and a musical curiosity that has led him
to explore repertoire spanning centuries and numerous styles, he
has proven to be one of today's most intriguing and versatile
Mr. Gerstein is the sixth recipient of the prestigious Gilmore
Artist Award, presented every four years to an exceptional pianist
who, regardless of age or nationality, possesses broad and profound
musicianship and charisma and who desires and can sustain a career
as a major international concert artist. Since receiving the award
in 2010, Mr. Gerstein has shared his prize through the
commissioning of boundary-crossing new works by Oliver Knussen,
Chick Corea, Brad Mehldau, Timothy Andres and Alexander Goehr. Mr.
Gerstein was also awarded First Prize at the 2001 Arthur Rubinstein
Piano Competition in Tel Aviv, received a 2002 Gilmore Young Artist
Award and a 2010 Avery Fisher Grant.
Highlights of his 2015-16 season in North America include
performances of Scriabin's Prometheus: Poem of Fire with Ricardo
Muti and the Chicago Symphony, Rachmaninoff Concerto No. 2 with
Semyon Bychkov and the Berlin Philharmonic, Rachmaninoff Concerto
No. 1 with the Cleveland Orchestra, and playing both of George
Gershwin's piano concertos in the original jazz-band version to
open New York's 92nd Street Y's 15/16 season; re-engagements with
the Los Angeles Philharmonic as well as with the Toronto,
Cincinnati, Dallas, Houston, Colorado, Utah and Oregon symphonies
and the National Arts Centre Orchestra; a tour to Australia and New
Zealand; his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw with concerts in
Amsterdam and Frankfurt; a European tour with the Czech
Philharmonic; and recitals in New York and Houston.
Kirill Gerstein's recent North American engagements include
performances with the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia and
Minnesota Orchestras, and the Boston, St. Louis, San Francisco,
Atlanta, Baltimore, Detroit, Indianapolis and Montreal symphonies
among others. He has also recently appeared at the Aspen Music
Festival, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chicago's Grant Park,
Tanglewood with the Boston Symphony, Blossom with the Cleveland
Orchestra, and with the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Bravo! Vail
Valley Festival, Mann Music Center and Saratoga; and performed in
recital at New York's 92nd St. Y and Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall,
the Kennedy Center and in Boston, Toronto, Berkeley, Vancouver,
Detroit, Miami and Princeton.
Internationally, Kirill Gerstein has played with such prominent
European orchestras as the Czech, Munich, Rotterdam and London
Philharmonics, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Deutsches
Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Dresden Staatskappelle, Finnish Radio
Orchestra, Tonkünstler Orchestra Vienna, WDR Symphony Orchestra
Cologne and the Zurich Tonhalle, as well as with the NHK Symphony
Orchestra in Tokyo. He has performed recitals in Paris, Prague,
Hamburg, London's Wigmore Hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall, and at the
Liszt Academy in Budapest. He made his Salzburg Festival debut
playing solo and two piano works with Andras Schiff and has also
appeared at the Lucerne and Jerusalem Chamber Music Festivals as
well as at the Proms in London.
Mr. Gerstein's second solo recording featuring Mussorgsky's
Pictures at an Exhibition and Schumann's Carnaval was released by
Myrios Classics in June 2014. His first solo recording with works
by Schumann, Liszt and Oliver Knussen, also for Myrios, was chosen
by The New York Times as one of the best recordings of 2010. He
also collaborated with Tabea Zimmerman on two recordings of sonatas
for viola and piano for Myrios, released in February 2011 and
November 2012. His most recent recording of the Tchaikovsky Piano
Concerto No. 1 and the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 2 with the
Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin was released by Myrios in
March 2015 and is the first recording using the new critical
edition recently completed by the Tchaikovsky Museum in Moscow
using the composer's original second version.
Born in 1979 in Voronezh, Russia, Mr. Gerstein studied piano at
a special music school for gifted children and taught himself to
play jazz by listening to his parents' extensive record collection.
At the age of 14, he came to the United States to study jazz piano
as the youngest student ever to attend Boston's Berklee College of
Music. After completing his studies in three years and following
his second summer at the Boston University program at Tanglewood,
Mr. Gerstein turned his focus back to classical music and moved to
New York City to attend the Manhattan School of Music, where he
studied with Solomon Mikowsky and earned both Bachelors and Masters
of Music degrees by the age of 20. He continued his studies in
Madrid with Dmitri Bashkirov and in Budapest with Ferenc Rados.
Mr. Gerstein became an American citizen in 2003 and divides his
time between the United States and Germany.
Kirill Gerstein, piano