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Press Release:

RENOWNED SOLOISTS AND A WORLD PREMIERE THIS AND NEXT MONTH ON DELTA AIRLINES MASTERWORKS SEASON AND DISTINGUISHED ARTISTS SERIES

Press Release:

Tuesday, 14 April, 2015

Music Director Ludovic Morlot Conducts Both Masterworks Concerts

World Premiere of Sebastian Currier’s Divisions and
Pianist Marc-André Hamelin in Concert on April 23 & 25

A Night of Beethoven Featuring Pianist Yefim Bronfman
on April 30 & May 2

Violinist Pinchas Zukerman and Pianist Angela Cheng on Distinguished Artists Series on May 26

Soloists 

Music Director Ludovic Morlot leads the Seattle Symphony in the world premiere performance of Sebastian Currier’s new composition, Divisions, on April 23. The piece, which commemorates World War I, is a co-commission with the Boston Symphony and the National Orchestra of Belgium. Also on the program is Robert Schumann’s dark yet ultimately triumphant Symphony No. 2, and Edvard Grieg’s one and only Piano Concerto, to be performed by the illustrious pianist Marc-André Hamelin. Click here to watch the YouTube video of Morlot in a café conversation about this concert program.

On Divisions, Sebastian Currier explains: “As human societies move through time, they alternate between fracture and repair. WWI is certainly one of our darkest, most fractured moments. It is unfortunately hard to find bright spots of cooperation, beauty and empathy that equal the ugliness and destruction of our darkest moments, but at least they can be imagined. My piece moves from fracture to (imagined) wholeness.”  

On Thursday, April 30 and Saturday, May 2, pianist Yefim Bronfman joins Ludovic Morlot and the Seattle Symphony in an evening of Beethoven on Masterworks, performing the Piano Concerto No. 4.  The concert will also include Beethoven’s patriotic and powerful Symphony No. 7. Later in the month, violinist Pinchas Zukerman will join pianist Angela Cheng for a one-day only performance on May 26 at Benaroya Hall. The program will include works by César Franck, Robert Schumann and Anton Dvořák.

Concerts and Program Details

Delta Air Lines Masterworks Season
Grieg’s Piano Concerto

Thursday, April 23, 2015, at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 25, 2015, at 8 p.m.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Ludovic Morlot, conductor
Marc-André Hamelin, piano
Seattle Symphony

SEBASTIAN CURRIER
Divisions (World Premiere)

EDVARD GRIEG
Piano Concerto

INTERMISSION

ROBERT SCHUMANN
Symphony No. 2

Pre-concert Talk one hour prior to performance. Speaker: Bryce Ingmire, Seattle Symphony Teaching Artist

Sebastian Currier's Divisions is co-commissioned by the Seattle Symphony, the Boston Symphony and the National Orchestra of Belgium.

Ask the Artist on Saturday, April 25, in the Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby following the concert.

Marc-André Hamelin’s performances generously underwritten by Douglas F. King through the Seattle Symphony’s Guest Artists Circle.

Seattle Symphony’s world premiere performances of Divisions received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts.


Delta Air Lines Masterworks Season
Yefim Bronfman Plays Beethoven

Thursday, April 30, 2015, at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 2, 2015, at 8 p.m.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Ludovic Morlot, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano
Seattle Symphony

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN
Piano Concerto No. 4

INTERMISSION

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN
Symphony No. 7

Pre-concert Talk one hour prior to performances

Speaker: Aaron Grad, Composer and Writer

Ask the Artist on Thursday, April 30, in the Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby following the concert.


Distinguished Artists
Violinist Pinchas Zukerman with Pianist Angela Cheng

Tuesday, May 26, 2015, at 7:30 p.m.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Pinchas Zukerman, violin
Angela Cheng, piano

EDWARD ELGAR
Six pieces, Op. 22

ANTONÍN DVOŘÁK            
Four Romantic Pieces, Op. 75

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN
Sonata No. 1

ROBERT SCHUMANN
Drei Romanzen, Op. 94

CÉSAR FRANCK
Sonata in A major for Violin and Piano

Pinchas Zukerman’s performance generously underwritten by Benson and Pamela Harer. 


About Sebastian Currier

Sebastian Currier is the 2007 recipient of the prestigious Grawemeyer Award. Heralded as "music with a distinctive voice" by the New York Times and as "lyrical, colorful, firmly rooted in tradition, but absolutely new" by the Washington Post, his music has been performed at major venues worldwide by acclaimed artists and orchestras.

His music has been enthusiastically embraced by violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter, for whom he wrote Aftersong, which she performed extensively in the US and Europe, including Carnegie Hall in New York, Symphony Hall in Boston, the Barbican in London, and the Grosses Festspielhaus in Salzburg. A critic from The Times (UK) said, "If all his pieces are as emotionally charged and ingenious in their use of rethought tonality as this, give me more." His violin concerto, Time Machines, dedicated to Ms. Mutter, was premiered by the New York Philharmonic in June 2011, and called “rapturously beautiful” by the New York Times. A work for chorus and orchestra, Sleepers and Dreamers, was premiered at the 2012 Grant Park Music Festival in honor of the 50th anniversary of the festival’s chorus. New works to be premiered during the 2012–13 season include Deep-Sky Objects, for soprano and ensemble; Fifteen Minutes, for flute, harp, and viola; and Quanta, for orchestra.

His chamber music was presented by the Berlin Philharmonic in 2007 and 2008, including three world premieres. In December 2009 he returned to Berlin again for the premiere of his harp concerto Traces, which was commissioned by the Berlin Philharmonic and performed by harpist Marie-Pierre Langlamet under the baton of Donald Runnicles.

His Microsymph, referred to by the composer as a large-scale symphony that has been squeezed into only ten minutes, was commissioned by the American Composers Orchestra and premiered at Carnegie Hall. It has also been performed by such orchestras as the San Francisco Symphony, the Gewandhaus Orchestra, Eos Orchestra, and the National Symphony Orchestra, and has been recorded by the Frankfurt Radio Orchestra with Hugh Wolff, conductor.

He has also written works that involve electronic media and video. Next Atlantis features a dialogue between string orchestra and pre-recorded sounds of water, evoking the infamous lost city, and was premiered by the American Composers Orchestra at Carnegie hall in 2010. Nightmaze, a multimedia piece based on a text of Thomas Bolt in which the protagonist dreams he is rushing along a dark, enormous highway, where strange road signs loom up only to disappear into the night, has been performed by Network for New Music and the Mosaic Ensemble. The Philadelphia Inquirer said "every turn is breathtaking" and the New York Times, "Currier's rich and imaginative music sets the right tone, with its fractured and dissonant baroque-like gestures leading off like highway exits into the void and hinting at distant reservoirs of emotion and yearning." 

Recordings include his violin concerto Time Machines with Anne-Sophie Mutter and the New York Philharmonic on Deutsche Grammophon, Next Atlantis with the Ying Quartet on Naxos, and “On the Verge” from Music from Copland House, featuring his Grawemeyer Award-winning Static, and other chamber works. His “Quartetset/Quiet Time” album, recorded by the Cassatt Quartet, says Anne Midgette for The New York Times, "…distances the present from the past, causing the listener to think about music itself." 

He has received many prestigious awards including the Berlin Prize, Rome Prize, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and has held residencies at the MacDowell and Yaddo colonies. He received a DMA from the Juilliard School; and from 1999-2007 he taught at Columbia University.

About Ludovic Morlot

French conductor Ludovic Morlot is Music Director of the Seattle Symphony. During the 2014–2015 season Morlot and the Seattle Symphony will continue to invite their audiences to ‘listen boldly’, presenting a wide variety of works ranging from Mozart’s Requiem, Dvořák’s last three symphonies, Berlioz Roméo et Juliette and Mahler Symphony No. 3 to Ives, Dutilleux and Salonen as well as premieres by Sebastian Currier, Julian Anderson and Trimpin.

Ludovic Morlot was Chief Conductor of La Monnaie for three years (2012–2014). During this time he conducted several new productions including La Clemenza di Tito, Jenufa and Pelléas et Mélisande.  Concert performances, both in Brussels and Aix-en-Provence, included repertoire by Beethoven, Stravinsky, Britten, Webern and Bruneau.

During the 2014–2015 season Morlot will return to both the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Chicago Symphony Orchestras. He also has a strong connection with the Boston Symphony Orchestra whom he conducts regularly in Boston and Tanglewood and recently on a tour to the west coast of America. This relationship started when he was the Seiji Ozawa Fellowship Conductor at the Tanglewood Music Center and subsequently appointed assistant conductor for the orchestra and their Music Director James Levine (2004–07). Morlot has also conducted the New York Philharmonic and the symphony orchestras in Philadelphia, Cleveland and Pittsburgh. Elsewhere, Morlot’s engagements have included the Royal Concertgebouw, London Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskapelle, Budapest Festival, Orchestre National de France, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin and Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestras.  

Trained as a violinist, Morlot studied conducting in London and was conductor in residence with the Orchestre National de Lyon (2002–04). Morlot was elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in 2014. He is Chair of Orchestral Conducting Studies at the University of Washington School of Music in Seattle. 

About the Seattle Symphony

Founded in 1903, the Seattle Symphony is one of America’s leading symphony orchestras and is internationally acclaimed for its innovative programming and extensive recording history. Under the leadership of Music Director Ludovic Morlot since September 2011, the Symphony is heard live from September through July by more than 300,000 people. It performs in one of the finest modern concert halls in the world — the acoustically superb Benaroya Hall — in downtown Seattle. Its extensive education and community-engagement programs reach over 100,000 children and adults each year. The Seattle Symphony has a deep commitment to new music, commissioning many works by living composers each season, including John Luther Adams’ recent Become Ocean, which won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Music and a 2015 Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition. The orchestra has made more than 140 recordings and has received 18 Grammy nominations, two Emmy Awards and numerous other accolades. In 2014 the Symphony launched its in-house recording label, Seattle Symphony Media. 

Ticket Information

Concert tickets start at $20 and may be purchased at www.seattlesymphony.org, by calling the Seattle Symphony Ticket Office at (206) 215-4747, or by visiting the Ticket Office in Benaroya Hall, located on the corner of Union Street and Third Avenue. Ticket Office hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m., and Saturday, 1–6 p.m. Tickets may also be purchased through the Seattle Symphony’s iPhone and Android apps.


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