• Friday, Oct 5, 2012

    Robert Spano to Lead Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in Works by Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, and William Walton on Saturday, October 27 at 8:00 p.m.

    Image of Robert Spano © Angela Morris.
    Carnegie Hall presents the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Music Director Robert Spano on Saturday, October 27 at 8:00 p.m. in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage, in a concert featuring the stirring American orchestral classic Appalachian Spring by Aaron Copland, as well as two dramatic choral works from the 20th century, Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast, both featuring the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus. Countertenor John Holiday is soloist in the Bernstein piece, and baritone Brett Polegato is featured in the Walton work. Norman Mackenzie is director of choruses for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.

    Artist Information
    Robert Spano, currently in his 12th season as music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO), is recognized internationally as one of the most imaginative conductors today. Since 2001, he has invigorated and expanded the orchestra’s repertoire while elevating the ensemble to new levels of international prominence and acclaim. The orchestra and audiences together explore a creative programming mix, recordings, and visual enhancements, such as “Theater of a Concert,” the orchestra’s continuing exploration of different formats, settings, and enhancements for the musical performance experience, such as the first concert-staged performances of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic in November 2008. The “Atlanta School of Composers” reflects Mr. Spano’s and the orchestra’s commitment to nurturing and championing music through multi-year partnerships defining a new generation of American composers, including Osvaldo Golijov, Jennifer Higdon, Christopher Theofanidis, and Michael Gandolfi. Since the beginning of his tenure, Mr. Spano and the orchestra have performed over 100 concerts containing contemporary works (composed since 1950), including 15 ASO-commissioned world premieres. Mr. Spano has a discography with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra of nine recordings, six of which have been honored with Grammy Awards. He has led the orchestra's performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, as well as the Ravinia, Ojai, and Savannah Music Festivals.

    In addition, Mr. Spano has led the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics, San Francisco Symphony, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and Philadelphia Orchestra, as well as Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala, BBC Symphony, and Amsterdam’s Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In addition, he has conducted for Covent Garden, Welsh National Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, and the 2005 and 2009 Seattle Opera Ring cycles. Mr. Spano was Musical America's 2008 Conductor of the Year. In March 2010, Mr. Spano began a three-year tenure as Emory University’s Distinguished Artist in Residence, in which he spends three weeks each year leading intensive seminars, lecturing and presenting programs on science, math, philosophy, literature, and musicology throughout the university’s campus. In its 165-year history, Emory University has honored only seven other individuals with such expansive residencies, including the Dalai Lama, President Jimmy Carter, and author Salman Rushdie.

    The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, currently in its 68th season, consistently affirms its position as one of America’s leading orchestras by performing great music, presenting great artists, educating, and engaging. The orchestra is known for the excellence of its live performances, presentations, renowned choruses, and its impressive list of Grammy Award-winning recordings. The leading cultural organization in the Southeast, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra serves as the cornerstone for artistic development and music education in the region. During its 32-year history with the Telarc label, the orchestra and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus has recorded more than 100 albums, and its recordings have won 27 Grammy Awards in categories including Best Classical Album, Best Orchestral Performance, Best Choral Performance, and Best Opera Performance.

    The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra performs more than 200 concerts each year for a combined audience of more than a half million in a full schedule of performances which also features educational and community concerts. A recognized leader and supporter of contemporary American music, the orchestra recently received the 2007 award for Strongest Commitment to New American Music from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. In addition, Music Director Robert Spano was named Musical America 2008 Conductor of the Year. With the opening of the 12,000-seat Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre at Encore Park in May 2008, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra became the first US orchestra to annually perform and present in its concert hall, and in two amphitheaters. In summer 2008, the orchestra celebrated 35 years at legendary Chastain Park Amphitheater, the award-winning, 6,500 seat venue in Atlanta, during the orchestra’s annual Delta Classic Chastain concert series.

    The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus is regularly acclaimed for the beauty and expressiveness of its singing. The chorus, comprising 200 volunteer voices, performs with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra throughout each season, and is featured on many of the orchestra's recordings. The chorus performs large choral-symphonic works with the full orchestra under the batons of Music Director Robert Spano and Principal Guest Conductor Donald Runnicles, and has also sung with guest conductors including Roberto Abbado, Charles Dutoit, Alan Gilbert, Bernard Labadie, John Nelson, and William Fred Scott. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Choruses have been directed by Norman Mackenzie since 1999, following the death of its founder, the legendary Robert Shaw, who founded the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus and Chamber Chorus in 1970. Mr. Mackenzie had worked closely with Mr. Shaw for fourteen years, and under his current direction, the chorus has won two Grammy Awards for Vaughan Williams’s A Sea Symphony and the Berlioz Requiem, and Mackenzie conducted the ASO Chamber Chorus in its own Telarc recording. The chorus made its Carnegie Hall debut in 1976 with a performance of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9, and has returned to perform with the orchestra on a number of occasions, including such works as Janácek’s epic Glagolitic Mass in October 2010 with Mr. Spano and the Orchestra.

    Program Information
    Saturday, October 27 at 7:30 p.m.
    Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
    Robert Spano, Music Director and Conductor
    John Holiday, Countertenor
    Brett Polegato, Baritone
    Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus
    Norman Mackenzie, Director of Choruses

    AARON COPLAND Appalachian Spring
    LEONARD BERNSTEIN Chichester Psalms
    WILLIAM WALTON Belshazzar's Feast

    This concert and the Choral Classics series are made possible, in part, by an endowment fund for choral music established by S. Donald Sussman in memory of Judith Arron and Robert Shaw.

    Bank of America is the Proud Season Sponsor of Carnegie Hall.
    Ticket Information
    Tickets, priced $31—$90, are available at the Carnegie Hall Box Office, 154 West 57th Street, or can be charged to major credit cards by calling CarnegieCharge at 212-247-7800 or by visiting the Carnegie Hall website, carnegiehall.org.carnegiehall.org.

    For Carnegie Hall Corporation presentations taking place in Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage, a limited number of seats, priced at $10, will be available day-of-concert beginning at 11:00 a.m. Monday through Saturday and 12:00 noon on Sunday until one hour before the performance or until supply lasts. The exceptions are Carnegie Hall Family Concerts and gala events. These $10 tickets are available to the general public on a first-come, first-served basis at the Carnegie Hall Box Office only. There is a two-ticket limit per customer.

    In addition, for all Carnegie Hall presentations in Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage a limited number of partial view (seats with obstructed or limited sight lines or restricted leg room) will be sold for 50% of the full price. For more information on this and other discount ticket programs, including those for students, Notables members, and Bank of America customers, visit carnegiehall.org/discounts. Artists, programs, and prices are subject to change. 
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