2020-21 BSO Season Overview

Boston Symphony Orchestra 2020-2021 Season Programs


Please note: all programs and artists are subject to change given the ongoing uncertainty around the COVID-19 health crisis. Though the BSO is planning for a full season of performances and hopes it will proceed without interruption, the organization is prepared to respond to recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and the City of Boston. Should the BSO need to cancel or change elements of the season as outlined below, ticket holders would be notified about options for ticket donations, exchanges, or refunds. The BSO will always hold the health and well-being of its audience, musicians, staff, guest artists, and the entire BSO community as the highest priority.

Boston Symphony Orchestra, 2020-21 Season Programs

Wednesday, September 16, 8:00pm
Opening Night at Symphony
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Lang Lang, piano
Symphony No. 1
Piano Concerto No. 2

Thursday, September 17
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Overture, The Consecration of the House
Symphony No. 1
Symphony No. 2

Saturday, September 19
Tuesday, September 22
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Symphony No. 2
Symphony No. 3, Eroica

Thursday, September 24
Friday, September 25, 1:30pm
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Symphony No. 4
Symphony No. 5

Saturday, September 26
Tuesday, September 29
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Symphony No. 6
Symphony No. 7

Thursday, October 1 
Friday, October 2, 1:30pm
Saturday, October 3
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Amanda Majeski, soprano*
Tamara Mumford, mezzo-soprano
Pavel Černoch, tenor
Kwangchul Youn, bass
Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton, conductor
Symphony No. 8
Symphony No. 9

Thursday, October 8
Friday, October 9 (Casual Friday)
Saturday, October 10
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Thomas Rolfs, trumpet
Renée Fleming, soprano
Rod Gilfry, baritone**
Wendall Harrington, video artist**

STRAUSS Love Scene from Feuersnot
Detlev GLANERT Concerto for Trumpet
   and Orchestra (October 8 & 10)
Kevin PUTS The Brightness of Light, for soprano, baritone, and orchestra

Thursday, October 15
Friday, October 16, 1:30pm
Saturday, October 17
Tuesday, October 20
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Ildar Abdrazakov, bass*
Men of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus
and New England Conservatory Chorus,
James Burton, conductor

Sofia GUBAIDULINA Prologue, for orchestra (American premiere; BSO co-commission)
SHOSTAKOVICH Symphony No. 13, Babi Yar

Thursday, October 22, 10:30am (open rehearsal)
Thursday, October 22
Friday, October 23, 1:30pm
Saturday, October 24
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Augustin Hadelich, violin
HAYDN Symphony No. 26, Lamentatione
BRITTEN Violin Concerto
STRAVINSKY The Rite of Spring

Thursday, October 29
Friday, October 30, 1:30pm
Saturday, October 31
Andrew Manze, conductor
Alina Ibragimova, violin
BRAHMS Violin Concerto
Victoria BORISOVA-OLLAS Angelus
MOZART Symphony No. 35, Haffner

Thursday, November 5
Friday, November 6, 1:30pm
Saturday, November 7
Giancarlo Guerrero, conductor
Iwona Sobotka, soprano*
Lorelei Ensemble,
Beth Willer, Artistic Director
Anne Kauffman, stage director*
Jeff Sugg, scenic and lighting designer*
Márion Talán, costume designer*
GÓRECKI Symphony No. 3, Symphony of Sorrowful Songs*
Julia WOLFE Her Story, for vocal ensemble and orchestra* (BSO co-commission)

Both works performed with English supertitles

Thursday, November 12
Friday, November 13, 1:30pm
Saturday, November 14
Tuesday, November 17
Dima Slobodeniouk, conductor
Frank Peter Zimmermann, violin
MENDELSSOHN Violin Concerto
STRAVINSKY The Firebird (complete)

Thursday, November 19, 10:30am (open rehearsal)
Thursday, November 19
Friday, November 20, (Casual Friday)
Saturday, November 21

Alan Gilbert, conductor
Garrick Ohlsson, piano
Liv Redpath, soprano*
John Brancy, baritone*

BEETHOVEN Egmont Overture (November 19 & 21)
BARTÓK Piano Concerto No. 3
NIELSEN Symphony No. 3, Sinfonia espansiva

Tuesday, November 24
Friday, November 27, 1:30pm
Saturday, November 28
Anna Rakitina, conductor**
Inon Barnatan, piano**
Thomas ADÈS Polaris
RACHMANINOFF Piano Concerto No. 2
ELGAR Enigma Variations

Thursday, January 7 
Friday, January 8, 1:30pm
Saturday, January 9
Tuesday, January 12
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Daniil Trifonov, piano
Women of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus, 
James Burton, conductor
Brian Raphael NABORS Pulse
PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 1
HOLST The Planets

Thursday, January 14
Friday, January 15, 1:30pm 
Saturday, January 16
Tuesday, January 19
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Rudolf Buchbinder, piano
MOZART Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor, K.466
MAHLER Symphony No. 5

Thursday, January 21
Friday, January 22, 1:30pm
Saturday, January 23
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Gil Shaham, violin
Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton, conductor
MOZART Violin Concerto No. 2 in D, K.211
Arvo PÄRT Fratres, for violin, string orchestra, and percussion
SHOSTAKOVICH Symphony No. 3, The First of May

Thursday, January 28
Friday, January 29 (Casual Friday)
Saturday, January 30
Thomas Wilkins, conductor
Aaron Diehl, piano*
Charlotte Blake Alston, narrator*
ELLINGTON Three Black Kings (January 28 & 30)
GERSHWIN Second Rhapsody, for piano and orchestra
ELLINGTON Come Sunday, for narrator and orchestra
STILL Symphony No. 4, Autochthonous

Thursday, February 4
Friday, February 5, 1:30pm
Saturday, February 6
Klaus Mäkelä, conductor*
Alban Gerhardt, cello
SIBELIUS The Swan of Tuonela
Brett DEAN Cello Concerto
SIBELIUS Symphony No. 1

Thursday, February 11
Friday, February 12, 1:30pm
Saturday, February 13
Thomas Adès, conductor
Kirill Gerstein, piano
PROKOFIEV Autumnal Sketch
RAVEL Piano Concerto for the left hand
Thomas ADÈS Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
JANÁČEK Taras Bulba

Thursday, February 18
Friday, February 19, 1:30pm
Saturday, February 20
John Storgårds, conductor
Sol Gabetta, cello*
GRIEG Holberg Suite
MARTINŮ Cello Concerto No. 1
Outi TARKIAINEN Midnight Sun Variations
SIBELIUS Symphony No. 3

Thursday, February 25
Friday, February 26, 1:30pm
Saturday, February 27
Tuesday, March 2
Juanjo Mena, conductor
Emanuel Ax, piano
Bernard RANDS Symphonic Fantasy (BSO co-commission)
MOZART Piano Concerto No. 17 in G, K.453
BRAHMS Symphony No. 1

Thursday, March 4
Friday, March 5, 1:30pm
Saturday, March 6
Herbert Blomstedt, conductor
SIBELIUS Symphony No. 4
MENDELSSOHN Symphony No. 3, Scottish

Thursday, March 18
Friday, March 19, 1:30pm
Saturday, March 20
Tuesday, March 23
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Lise Davidsen, soprano*
Don Juan
Death and Transfiguration
Symphonic Fantasy from Die Frau ohne Schatten
Four Last Songs

Sunday, March 21, 3:00pm  (performance available for Choose Your Own subscriptions and single ticket sales)
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Yo-Yo Ma, cello
STRAUSS Symphonic Fantasy from Die Frau ohne Schatten
STRAUSS Death and Transfiguration
STRAUSS Romance for cello and orchestra
HAYDN Cello Concerto No. 1 in C

Thursday, March 25, 10:30am (open rehearsal)
Thursday, March 25
Friday, March 26, 1:30pm
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Paul Lewis, piano
Julia ADOLPHE New work (world premiere; BSO co-commission)
MOZART Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-flat, K.595
DVOŘÁK Symphony No. 7 

Tuesday, April 6, 7:30pm
Thursday, April 8, 7:30pm
Saturday, April 10, 7:30pm
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Kristine Opolais, soprano (Katerina Izmailova)
Brandon Jovanovich, tenor (Sergei)**
Sergei Skorokhodov, tenor (Zinovy Izmailov)*
Vladimir Vaneyev, bass (Boris Izmailov and Ghost of Boris)*
Miranda Keys, soprano (Female Convict)*
Michelle Trainor, soprano (Aksinya)
Vasilisa Berzhanskaya, mezzo-soprano (Sonyetka)*
Matthew DiBattista, tenor (Teacher)
Charles Blandy*, Neil Ferreira, and Yeghishe Manucharyan*, tenors (Foremen)
Charles Blandy, tenor (Drunken Guest)
Yeghishe Manucharyan, tenor (Coachman)
Andrey Popov, tenor (Shabby Peasant)*
David Kravitz, baritone (Millhand)
Dmytro Kalmuchyn, baritone (Porter)*
Joo Won Kang, baritone (Steward)*
Sir Willard White, bass-baritone (Old Convict)
Patrick Guetti, bass (Officer and Sentry)*
Goran Juric, bass (Priest)*
Anatoli Sivko, bass (Chief of Police)*
Sava Vemic, bass (Policeman)*
Tanglewood Festival Chorus, James Burton, Conductor

SHOSTAKOVICH Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk

Concert performances, sung in Russian with English supertitles

Friday, April 16 (Casual Friday)
Saturday, April 17
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Paul Lewis, piano
Julia ADOLPE New work (BSO co-commission, April 17)
MOZART Pino Concerto No. 27 in B-flat, K.595
DVOŘÁK Symphony No. 7 

Thursday, April 22 (performance available for Choose Your Own subscriptions and single ticket sales)
Friday, April 23, 1:30pm
Saturday, April 24
Tuesday, April 27
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Mitsuko Uchida, piano
Joan TOWER Chamber Dance
BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 1
BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 3

Thursday, April 29, 10:30am (open rehearsal)
Thursday, April 29
Friday, April 30, 1:30pm
Saturday, May 1
Andris Nelsons, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano
Anna Gawboy, lighting research* 
Justin Townsend, lighting designer*
Tanglewood Festival Chorus, 
James Burton, conductor
LIADOV The Enchanted Lake and Kikimora
SCRIABIN Prometheus, The Poem of Firefor piano, chorus, color organ, and orchestra 

*denotes BSO debut

**denotes BSO subscription debut

Boston Symphony Chamber Players, 2020-21 Season Programs (Jordan Hall)

Sunday, November 8, 2020, 3pm
Jennifer HIGDON Autumn Music, for wind quintet
Marti EPSTEIN Komorebi, for oboe, clarinet,and violin
Shulamit RAN Lyre of Orpheus, for string sextet
FARRENC Nonet for winds and strings 

Sunday, February 21, 2021, 3pm
Alessio Bax, piano
Sophia Burgos, soprano
John Brancy, baritone
BARTÓK Contrasts, for clarinet, violin, and piano
Michael GANDOLFI Cantata, for soprano, baritone, and ensemble
DVOŘÁK String Quintet in G, Op. 77

Sunday, March 28, 2021, 3pm
Inon Barnatan, piano
GLINKA Trio pathétique in D minor for clarinet, bassoon, and piano
Sofia GUBAIDULINA Sonata for double bass and piano
Elena LANGER Reflections on Water, for ensemble
SHOSTAKOVICH Piano Quintet in G minor, Op. 57

Sunday, April 25, 2021, 3pm
HINDEMITH Octet for winds and strings
Yehudi WYNER Concord 7, for flute, oboe, clarinet, violin, viola, cello, and piano
MOZART String Quintet in D, K.593

Youth and Family Presentations

Saturday, November 14, 2020, 12 p.m. 
Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras (BYSO)
Adrian Slywotzky, conductor
PROKOFIEV Peter and the Wolf

Saturday, March 13, 2021, 10 a.m. and 12 p.m. 
Boston Symphony Orchestra
Thomas Wilkins, BSO Germeshausen Youth 
and Family Concerts Conductor

Saturday, April 24, 2021, 12 noon
Marta Żurad, conductor
Matt Roberts, magician