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NYPO announces forward-looking 2013-14 season…

23 January 2013

It’s barely 2013, but the New York Philharmonic has already announced its plans for next season. (You can see them here.)

There are several themes, not least a prolonged farewell to highly-regarded concertmaster Glenn Dicterow. There are some intriguing heavy-hitting guest performances, including Paul Lewis and Christoph von Dohnányi sharing Brahms 1, and two weeks from Bernard Haitink featuring Berg’s Violin Concerto (with Leonidas Kavados), the Eroica, and Mahler 3The Dude does Bruckner 9, Vladimir Jurowski comes to town for Stravinsky, Szymanowski, and Prokofiev, and Manfred Honeck has an all-Dvořák programme with Anne-Sophie Mutter.

Alan Gilbert maintains his high workload, celebrating the Benjamin Britten anniversary with a few concerts, and doing a Rattle by scheduling the ‘trilogy’ of final Mozart symphonies in one go. (Previous Mozart from Gilbert is not encouraging.) He also steps into Beethoven, with a Ninth, a First, and the complete piano concertos with Yefim Bronfman. Bronfman is this year’s artist-in-residence, performing at least eight concertos, including the Tchaikovsky, the Beethoven Triple, and Magnus Lindberg’s Second.

The biggest news, though, comes in twentieth- and twenty-first-century repertoire. The orchestra has borrowed from architecture to create a NY Phil Biennial, in May/June 2014. Details are sketchy so far, although it will include a CONTACT! performance, guest groups, and a NYPO performance of Christopher Rouse’s new Fourth Symphony. (Gilbert seems to be pushing this composer hard, also scheduling his Oboe Concerto – paired with Strauss – and his Rapture.) I can’t gauge how successful this idea will be until more details are released later in the year, but it seems promising.

The (post-)modernist tinge to this season extends to the subscription concerts, even if the season as a whole looks a little fuzzy. Mark-Anthony Turnage’s Frieze prefaces Beethoven 9 (another losing battle for a contemporary composer), Dudamel gives Claude Vivier’s Orion an airing before the Bruckner, David Zinman pairs Thomas Adès’s Couperin studies with Richard Goode’s Mozart 18 and a Mendelssohn symphony, and Charles Dutoit assembles Alisa Weilerstein, Daniel Müller-Schott, and Carter Brey for Penderecki’s Concerto grosso. Esa-Pekka Salonen gives his all-conquering Violin Concerto with Leila Josefowicz, who will presumably be less pregnant than the last time I heard her play this work.

There’s also a cracker of a season opener: a screening of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, complete with live performances of the music he so remarkably used in that film. Other less interesting film-themed evenings are Hitchcock excerpts, and Pixar in Concert, also with clips. I’m as big a fan of Toy Story as the next 20-something, but really, folks?

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