Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra

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Ruth Gipps, Symphony No. 2 (U.S. premiere)

Performed by the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra on March 31, 2018, Adam Stern, conductor, Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA (with permission from the family of Ruth Gipps).


“A floodtide of inspired invention”: Beethoven’s Seventh

"A masterpiece of technical skill, taste, imagination, craftsmanship and inspiration." Thus did the hyper-critical Hector Berlioz sum up his thoughts on Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, one of the most beloved of Beethoven's Nine ever since its wildly successful premiere (at which the audience insisted on an immediate repeat of the slow movement). Franz Liszt's impassioned and innovative Piano Concerto No. 1 will be performed by the winner of the Philharmonic's 2018 Don Bushell competition, Hexin Qiao. A symphonic work by Finnish composer Helvi Leiviskä rounds out this special concert.


“The Play of Sounds”: Tchaikovsky’s Suite No. 2

Although Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's four orchestral suites are exemplars of everything that is loved about his music, they still remain relatively unknown to audiences in spite of their great potential appeal. This concert features a rare performance of the Orchestral Suite No. 2, a boistrous, tuneful and joyous work deserving of more popularity. Joseph Haydn is represented by two contrasting works: the rousing overture to his opera L'incontro improvviso, and a tempestuous dramatic "scene", Berenice, che fai?, featuring soprano Linda Tsatsanis. The concert also includes music by French composer Elsa Barraine, whose Symphony No. 2 was given its second U.S. performance during the Philharmonic's 2017-18 season; her Funeral Music for "The Entombment" of Titien will receive its U.S. premiere. The soloist will be pianist Sophie Lippert, a former winner of the Philharmonic's Don Bushell Competition.


Saint-Saëns, Marche Militaire Francaise

Performed by the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra on October 28, 2017, Adam Stern, conductor, Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA


Mozart, Piano Concerto No 24 in c, K. 491

Performed by the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra on January 27, 2017, Adam Stern, conductor, Allan Dameron, piano, Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA


Schubert, Overture,  “Rosamunde”, D.644

Performed by the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra on January 27, 2017, Adam Stern, conductor, Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA


All Tchaikovsky

SPO performance on October 24, 2015 of Eugene Onegin Waltz, Pique Dame Overture, Sérénade mélancolique, Marche slave, selections from The Snow Maiden, Andante cantabile, and Francesca da Rimini. Adam Stern, conductor.


“A mysterious, indefinable poetry”: Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1

The Philharmonic launches the season with a concert comprised entirely of Slavic music: composers of Czech, Polish, Russian and Slovenian origin will be featured. Two staples of the concert repertoire will be spotlighted: Bedrich Smetana's symphonic poem The Moldau and Frédéric Chopin's hauntingly beautiful Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Serbian-born pianist Milica Jelača Jovanović as soloist. An intriguing and powerful work by Slovenian composer Nana Forte, Incantation, will receive its U. S. premiere. Autumn, the most popular portion of Alexander Glazunov's radiant ballet score The Seasons, will be appropriately presented at this fall concert. A little-known delight by Antonín Dvořák, his Polonaise, completes the program.


“I will never achieve this again”: Saint-Saëns’ “Organ” Symphony

An ardent pacifist and humanist, German composer Bernd Alois Zimmermann's abhorrence for his country's actions during World War II resulted in compositions that were cries for justice and brotherhood; one work was described as "a protest against what Zimmermann perceived as the 'racial hatred' he saw poisoning society." In his last work, Ich wandte mich und sah an geschah unter die Sonne ("And turning around me, I saw all the injustice under the sun"), the composer employs texts from the Book of Ecclesiastes and Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov to create a harrowing indictment of the suppression of freedom and lack of compassion for one's fellow man. The Philharmonic's season closes with a return to the music of Saint-Saëns – a work in which even the modest composer knew he had surpassed himself, the radiant "Organ" Symphony. A handful of Seattle's leading performers share the stage for this program, including actors Terry Edward Moore and Leslie Law, baritone Charles Robert Stephens, and organist Joseph Adam.


“The Fifth Evangelist”: Bach’s “St. Anne”

The great German-born conductor Frederick Stock, who led the Chicago Symphony for nearly forty years, made a grand transcription of Bach's mighty "St. Anne" Prelude and Fugue, presented at this concert thanks to the generosity and assistance of the Chicago Symphony's Rosenthal Archive. The Philharmonic's contribution to the 5th Avenue Theatre's Seattle Celebrates Shakespeare Festival is the "William Shakespeare" Overture by the early Romantic Danish composer Friedrich Kuhlau. English composer Ruth Gipps, inexplicably ignored in her homeland and abroad, is represented by the U. S. premiere of the second of her five fine symphonies. Finally, flutist Miao Liu will be heard in the virtuosic and lyrical Concerto for Flute and Orchestra by Jacques Ibert.


Three Decades, Five Treasures

The first three decades of the 20th century yielded numerous musical riches. The Philharmonic will present one of the most enduring of these, Respighi's The Pines of Rome, as the climax to a concert featuring five of the century's most distinctive composers from five different countries. The program will include a screening of René Clair's delightful surrealist film Entr'acte, with Erik Satie's original music performed live by the Philharmonic. A folksong arrangement by Percy Grainger, a symphonic poem by the 19-year-old Dimitri Mitropoulos (later known as one of the 20th century's most important conductors), and two haunting rarities for cello and orchestra by Sibelius with soloist Mara Finkelstein round out this unique program.


“A Great Teacher is a Great Artist”


Phil • Harmonic : Love of Sound

Photographer Paul Lebel's look at the Seattle Phil. Including interviews with Music Director Adam Stern and cellist Michael Moore.


First Rehearsal 2015

Members of the Seattle Phil discuss their first rehearsal and the All Tchaikovsky program of the October 24, 2015 concert.


Upcoming Concert:

“On the wings of the wind”: Borodin’s “Prince Igor”

June 8, 2019 at 2pm | Benaroya Hall

The Philharmonic's season closes with music from the 19th and 20th centuries. One of Johannes Brahms' earliest attempts at symphonic writing, the Serenade No. 2 is a lush work boasting some of its composer's most beguiling melodies and a unique orchestration (no violins!). Luciano Berio's Corale and Frank Martin's Ballade are both arresting and intriguing concertos in miniature, and will feature, respectively, Philharmonic Concertmaster Luke Fitzpatrick and Principal Flute, Sandra Saathoff. The concert concludes with music from Alexander Borodin's opera Prince Igor: the Overture and the ever-popular Polovtsian Dances.

Luke Fitzpatrick

Sandra Saathoff

Benaroya Hall

Benaroya Hall houses two performance halls in a complex that is thoroughly integrated into downtown Seattle. Occupying an entire city block at the very core of the city, the development celebrates the vital role of performance events while maintaining the continuity of commercial life along one avenue and providing a much-needed public space, in the form of a terraced garden, along another.

Parking Information is available here.

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BRAHMS

Serenade No. 2 in A, Op. 16

BERIO

Corale

Luke Fitzpatrick, soloist

MARTIN

Ballade

Sandra Saathoff, soloist

BORODIN

Prince Igor: Overture and Polovtsian Dances


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*Youth 16 years and younger are invited to enjoy Phil concerts at no charge when they present this voucher. Concerts may not be appropriate for the very young. Verbalizations from infants and small children disrupt the performance and disturb other patrons.

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