THE LONDON SYMPHONY ORCHERSTRA ANNOUNCES CONCERT PROGRAMMES AT THE BARBICAN AND LSO ST LUKE’S FEBRUARY – JULY 2023
- Sir Simon Rattle conducts ‘desert island’ favourites – Adams’ Harmonielehre, Messiaen’s Turangalîla Symphony and new Betsy Jolas work
- Guest Conductors Marin Alsop, Barbara Hannigan, Rafael Payare, Xian Zhang
- Sir Antonio Pappano conducts Coleridge-Taylor, Liszt and Strauss
- LSO play Sir Arthur Bliss’ score for 1936 film of HG Wells’ Things to Come in a live simulcast in the Barbican Hall on March 26
- Beethoven, Mediterranean Baroque, and Christian Tetzlaff and Friends at LSO St Luke’s
The final concerts Sir Simon Rattle conducts as the LSO’s Music Director before coming Conductor Emeritus sees him celebrating with a number of personal favourites. He revisits John Adams’ Harmonielehre for a Half Six Fix concert on 19 April, the LSO ‘s shorter, early evening concerts, with a more relaxed atmosphere. Harmonielehre is programmed along with Debussy’s La Mer, and Ravel’s Daphis and Chloé Suite No 2 on the following evening. For his final two Barbican concerts in June Sir Simon conducts a new commission by Betsy Jolas, and Messiaen’s Turangalîla-Symphonie. Sir Simon also leads the Orchestra on a tour to Australia with concerts in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney in late April and early May 2023.
The LSO’s extended family of conductors Barbara Hannigan, Sir Antonio Pappano, Gianandrea Noseda, François-Xavier Roth and Michael Tilson Thomas also feature throughout this period.
LSO Associate Artist Barbara Hannigan conducts two Barbican concerts during March, first a programme of Bach’s Contrapunctus XIX arranged by Berio, Berg’s Violin Concerto with Veronika Eberle, Haydn’s Symphony 44 Trauer and Claude Vivier’s long song of solitude, Lonely Child, sung by soprano Aphrodite Patoulidou, and a double bill of Messiaen’s L’ascension and Mahler’s Symphony No 4. This programme is also scheduled for a concert at Bath Forum.
Sir Antonio Pappano returns to the Barbican on Sunday 12 February with a concert which comprises Coleridge-Taylor’s Ballade in A Minor, and two symphonic poems: Liszt’s Die Ideale and Strauss Ein Heldenleben.
Gianandrea Noseda arrives in March to conduct concert programmes that include Russian masterpieces. He conducts Prokofiev’s Symphony No 3 Op 44 in a programme alongside Beethoven’s Violin Concerto Op 61, which features Lisa Batiashvili as guest soloist, and a further two programmes pairing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No 5 Op 73, with Simon Trpčeski as guest pianist, with Shostakovich’s Symphony No 13 Op 113, which is repeated solo for a Half Six Fix concert on Wednesday April 6.
François Xavier-Roth makes two journeys to London during this Season for concerts in February and May when he will continue his exploration of Beethoven Symphonies with Symphony No 5 Op 67, paired with Ligeti’s Macabre Collage arranged by Elgar Howarth, and Ligeti’s Violin Concerto with Patricia Kopatchinskaja for his first programme. The second evening finds him conducting Schubert’s Rosamunde Overture, with a selection of movements from the ballet, Schubert’s Mass No 5 and Zimmermann’s Oboe Concerto for which LSO Principal oboist Olivier Stankiewicz will step out of the ranks of the orchestra as soloist.
For his May visit, for a Half Six Fix, Roth conducts Beethoven Symphony No 6, and for the full evening the following night the Beethoven receives a second outing along with Yuja Wang playing the UK premiere of Magnus Lindberg’s Piano Concerto No 3. For his next concert he conducts a programme of mostly recent or new work including Cassie Kinochi’s Six Fanfares, Jonathan Woolgar’s Symphonic Preludes ‘Wach Auf,’ and Colin Matthews’ Mosaics, along with Bartók’s Music for Strings, Percussion and Celeste, and Lili Boulanger’s 1918 work D’un soir triste. For his final concert of the Season, he returns to Beethoven’s Symphonies with No 9 Choral Op 125, and Jörg Widmann’s Violin Concerto featuring Christian Tetzlaff as guest soloist.
Michael Tilson Thomas’ visit in 2023 focuses on works by Brahms, first a double bill of Brahms’ Piano Concerto Op 77 with Sunwook Kim as guest pianist, and Brahms’ Serenade No 2 Op 16. Then he conducts a second double-bill of the Violin Concerto Op 11 also with Christian Tetzlaff and the Serenade No 1 Op 11 on Sunday May 21.
Guest conductors join the LSO in February 2023 with the return of Xian Zhang, who conducts an evening which includes Nokuthula Ngwenyama’s fantasia Primal Message, a work she conducted for its orchestral world premiere on November 5, 2020, with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. LSO Principal Trumpet James Fountain is guest soloist for Hummel’s Trumpet Concerto and the programme ends with Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No 5 Op 64. The following week Marin Alsop, a great champion of the LSO’s Half Six Fix, conducts Weill’s Symphonic Nocturne from Lady in the Dark and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No 4 Op 58, with Eric Lu as soloist. The programme is repeated the next evening with addition of Rachmaninoff Symphonic Dances Op 45.
Venezuelan Conductor Rafael Payare is joined by guest violin soloist Vilde Frang for Shostakovich’s Violin Concerto No 1 Op 99, on 23 February, in a programme that also includes Gubaidulina’s Märchen and Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite.
Two one-off special events this season are LSO playing Sir Arthur Bliss’ score for 1936 film of HG Wells’ Things to Come in a live simulcast in the Barbican Hall on March 26, widely viewed as one of the greatest ever British films scores. For one-night only the LSO collaborates with Grammy-nominated composer, producer, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and vocalist Devonté Hynes (aka Blood Orange), on 19 May performing a selection of his orchestral works, as well as solo piano pieces and a piano duet with pianist Adam Tendler.
Lunchtime and early-evening chamber concert at LSO St Luke’s continue throughout the Season. The BBC Radio 3 Lunchtime Concert series has the final exploration of Beethoven small-scale works on Thursday 2 February, with French string quartet Quatuor Modigliani playing string quartets by Joaquin Turina The Bullfighter’s Prayer and Beethoven’s Razumovsky. A Mediterranean Baroque series begins on 20 April with Spanish instrumental ensemble Forma Antiqva playing works by José de Nebra, Nicolás Conforto, Vicente and others. On 20 April with winning duo of Liam Byrne on viola de gamba and Jonas Nordberg lute, with a programme of Giovanni Girolamo Kapsberger, Marin Marais and Diego Ortiz. Next, soprano Ruby Hughes is accompanied by Sergio Bucheli on lute exploring music by Barbara Strozzi, John Dowland including songs from the Peruvian Codex Zuola. The final concert in the series features Madrid-based quartet L’Apothéose Ensemble play works by Tomasso Giordani, José Herrando, Gaetano Brunetti and Carl Philipp Stamitz.
Violinist Christian Tetzlaff, in addition to his two guest soloists appearances in the LSO Barbican concert series in May, curates and plays along with his musician colleagues four further chamber concerts at LSO St Luke’s in the lunchtime and evening slots: 18, 19, 26 May.
On March 23 2023, the Final of the Donatella Flick LSO Conducting Competition will streamed live from LSO St Luke’s on Medici TV. Three exceptional young conductors compete for a £15,000 prize and the chance to be LSO Assistant conductor.
LSO Discovery, the LSO’s Learning and Community programme, present special free lunchtime concerts at LSO St Luke’s throughout the year with musicians from the Guildhall School and LSO, a concert for LSO Discovery Choirs of various age groups at LSO St Luke’s on Monday 27 March, and Family Concerts suitable for families aged 7 – 12 years in the Barbican Hall on June 3, as well as the annual LSO Panufnik Composers workshops on 31 May featuring new music by eight emerging composers the current cohort of Panufnik composers, working with conductor François-Xavier Roth and the LSO.