Hartford Symphony Orchestra Announces Programs for 2014-2015 Season

Music Director Carolyn Kuan. (Photo by Jane Shauck)

Travelers Joins HSO as 2014-2015 Season Sponsor

HARTFORD, April 15, 2014 – Hartford Symphony Orchestra Music Director Carolyn Kuan is pleased to announce the programming for the HSO’s 2014-2015 Masterworks Series and the 2014-2015 POPS! Series that will be presented at The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts in Hartford, CT. The HSO is also proud to announce that Travelers will be the 2014-2015 Season Sponsor.

Describing the highlights of the 2014-2015 HSO Season, Music Director Carolyn Kuan says, “The Masterworks concerts will bring together grand universal themes and bold singular achievements.  We’re exploring genius creativity – from Mozart, Beethoven and Brahms – to Gershwin, Copland and Bernstein.  Plus, presenting dynamic guest artists and HSO principal musicians renowned for their solo prowess – from piano to koto to trombone.  I am also very excited to take our audience on a season-long journey to explore one of the ultimate musical mysteries: Gustav Mahler – his search for metaphysical meanings of our lives, his passion, genius, humanity and more.  Throughout the season, we’ll be playing program selections related to Mahler, culminating with the Fourth Symphony – Mahler at his most approachable and expressive.”

Kuan adds, “We call our popular music series “POPS!” because the concerts by design are eclectic and energetic, inventive and inspiring. We have something for everyone to enjoy. Next season, we’ll be joined by Brubeck brothers and Callaway sisters, prominent chefs and circus performers, music and magic from the Lion King and the King of Pop.”

A complete listing of the HSO’s 2014-2015 Masterworks and POPS! concerts is included below.

Ticket Information: Subscriptions to the Hartford Symphony Orchestra’s 2014-2015 Masterworks and Pops Series are available by calling HSO Ticket Services at (860) 244-2999.  More information about subscribing is available at www.hartfordsymphony.org.  Tickets for individual concerts will go on sale in August 2014.

All artists, dates, and locations are subject to change.

Hartford Symphony Orchestra (Photo by Alan Grant)
Hartford Symphony Orchestra (Photo by Alan Grant)


October 16-19, 2014
Carolyn Kuan conductor
Masayo Ishigure koto
Jonita Lattimore soprano
Kevin Deas bass-baritone
Hartford Chorale
Richard Coffey, music director
First Cathedral Baptist Church Chorus
James “J.J.” Hairston director of music ministry
Smith Star Spangled Banner
Tchaikovsky 1812, Overture Solennelle, Op. 49
Sawai Tori No Yoni (Flying Like a Bird)
Gershwin arr. Bennett Porgy and Bess: A Concert of Songs
The season begins with a monumental journey commemorating struggle, bravery and hope.  Travel with us as we explore passionate anthems of independence, including “Porgy and Bess – arguably the most important piece of American music written in the 20th century,” – The New York Times.  Plus, a concerto for koto – a traditional Japanese stringed instrument.

November 13-16, 2014
Carolyn Kuan conductor
Martina Filjak piano
Brahms Tragic Overture, Op. 81
*R. Strauss Death and Transfiguration, TrV 158, Op. 24
Beethoven Piano Concerto No.5 in E flat Major, Op. 73, “Emperor”
Discover powerful themes of human existence.  The bravura playing and heroic notes of Beethoven’s fifth piano concerto expresses why it is known as the “Emperor”.  Brahms’ heart-wrenching Tragic Overture emphasizes the turbulent, tormented character of the piece, while Strauss’ transcendent Death and Transfiguration explores earthly travail resulting in heavenly bliss.  Martina Filjak is “a musician of unusual sophistication, discipline and personality,” – The Cleveland Plain Dealer.

December 4-7, 2014
William Eddins conductor and piano
Françaix Hommage à l’ami Papageno
Mozart Piano Concerto No. 17 in G Major, K. 453
Dvo?ák Symphony No.7 in D minor, Op. 70, B. 141
Celebrate musical inspiration, as our guest conductor plays and conducts at the same time!  William Eddins is music director of the Edmonton Symphony and was principal guest conductor of the RTÉ National Symphony in Dublin, Ireland.  Françaix’s Hommage was written with excerpts from Mozart’s opera, The Magic Flute – while Mozart wrote the G Major concerto especially for a gifted student.  Dvorák’s Seventh is a tribute to the perseverance of his Czech nation.

January 15-18, 2015
Daniel Hege conductor
Leonid Sigal violin
de Falla Ritual Fire Dance from El amor brujo
Chausson Poème, Op. 25
Waxman Carmen Fantasie
Sibelius Finlandia, Op. 26
Sibelius Symphony No. 5 in E flat Major, Op. 82
Taking inspiration from poems, folklore and stories, this program includes the virtuosic showpiece for strings and orchestra, Carmen Fantasie, featuring HSO concertmaster and principal violinist Leonid Sigal.  Plus, Sibelius’ powerful hymn, Finlandia, and the vivid Fifth Symphony. Guest conductor Daniel Hege is music director of the Wichita Symphony and former music director of the Syracuse Symphony.
The Koski Memorial Concert

February 12-15, 2015
Carolyn Kuan conductor
Sean Chen piano
*Wagner Overture to Tannhäuser, WWV 70
Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18
Bernstein Three Dance Episodes from On the Town (including images from the Wadsworth Atheneum’s Coney Island exhibit)
Stravinsky The Firebird (L’oiseau de feu): Suite (1919 version)
Orchestral fireworks take flight from Venus to New York to Russia, including Rachmaninoff’s sumptuous Second Piano Concerto and Stravinsky’s romantic Firebird.  Guest artist Sean Chen won the Van Cliburn and several other international piano competitions.
The Tina Mahar McNally and Alexander Campbell McNally Memorial Concert
The HSO’s collaboration with the Wadsworth Atheneum featuring images from the Coney Island exhibit is sponsored by the Richard P. Garmany Fund at Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.

March 12-15, 2015
Gerard Schwarz conductor
Julian Schwarz cello
Schwarz World Premiere/Original Composition
Saint-Saëns Concerto No. 1 for Violoncello in A minor, Op. 33
Brahms Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 73
Saint-Saëns’ energetic and soaring cello Concerto No.1 and Brahms’ sunny Symphony No. 2 welcome the arrival of spring and an acclaimed father-son duo.  Internationally renowned conductor Gerard Schwarz leads the HSO and his son, accomplished cellist Julian Schwarz, in this program that also includes the premiere of the maestro’s original composition for the HSO.

April 9-12, 2015
Carolyn Kuan conductor
*Saint-Saëns Danse Macabre, Op. 40
featuring Full Force Dance Theatre
Katie Stevinson-Nollet, artistic director
Prokofiev The Prodigal Son
Tchaikovsky Sleeping Beauty: Suite, Op. 66a, TH 234
featuring Nutmeg Ballet Conservatory
Victoria Mazzarelli, artistic director
Joyous themes of physical beauty and movement take center stage in this program featuring select appearances by two acclaimed Connecticut dance companies.  Plus, let your imagination soar with the music of Prokofiev’s brilliant Prodigal Son, originally created for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes by George Balanchine.

May 7-10, 2015
Carolyn Kuan conductor
Hartford Chorale
Richard Coffey, music director
Beth El Temple Chorus
Joseph Ness, cantor and director
Congregation Beth Israel Chorus
Pamela Siskin, cantor and director
Natasha Ulyanovsky, assistant musical director
Mozart Symphony No. 6 in F Major, K. 43
Bernstein Chichester Psalms
*Beethoven Symphony No. 6 in F Major, Op.68, “Pastorale”
Shimmering strings, fluttering flutes and celebratory choirs will all come together in this glorious celebration of nature, humanity, spirituality and renewal.
Innovative programming support provided by The Saunders Fund

May 28-31, 2015
Carolyn Kuan conductor
Brian Diehl HSO principal trombone
Jamilyn Manning-White soprano
Copland Fanfare for the Common Man
World Premiere/Original Commission Fanfare for Hartford Women
Mackey Harvest: Concerto for Trombone
*Mahler Symphony No. 4 in G Major
The finale culminates our season-long tribute to Mahler.  Throughout his life and music, Gustav Mahler explored the metaphysical meanings of our lives, and this work endures as his most approachable and expressive.  The program also features HSO principal trombonist Brian Diehl in a concerto based on Dionysus, the Greek god of creativity.  Plus, Copland’s exultant Fanfare for the Common Man – along with a world premiere of an original commission, Fanfare for Hartford Women.

POPS! SERIES 2014-15

Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
Experience the legacy of jazz giant Dave Brubeck.  His sons – Dan on drums and Chris on bass and trombone – will join forces with guitarist Mike DeMicco, pianist Chuck Lamb and the HSO for a dynamic performance of “melody, rhythm, culture and the spontaneous spirit of jazz.” – Philadelphia Inquirer.

Saturday, December 20, 2014 at 3pm and 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
Celebrate the spirit of the season at this holiday extravaganza.  Carolyn Kuan will conduct the HSO in a spectacular program of seasonal favorites, while Cirque de la Symphonie surrounds the stage with awe-inspiring aerialists, mind-boggling contortionists and breathtaking juggling acts.
Concert sponsored by Prudential Financial.

Saturday, February 28, 2015 at 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
Join guest artist James Delisco, conductor Brent Havens and the HSO for an evening filled with fabulous music spanning 40 years of Michael Jackson’s influential and celebrated career.  Get ready to sing and moonwalk along to the hits, from the Jackson 5 to Thriller and beyond, including ABC, I’ll Be There, Beat It, Rock With You, The Way You Make Me Feel, and more.

An HSO Musical Menu featuring more of Greater Hartford’s Restaurants
Saturday, March 21, 2015 at 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
Carolyn Kuan and the musicians are all fired up for Playing with Food 3, a new program of delectable sights, sounds, and tastes.  Bring your imagination and your appetite as the HSO blends its musical talents with some great culinary artists.  Learn the secrets behind the chefs’ unique dishes, their cooking tips and the exciting music that inspires them.

Saturday, April 18, 2015 at 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
When Tony Award-nominated sisters Ann Hampton Callaway and Liz Callaway perform together with the HSO, they’ll turn sibling rivalry into singing revelry with their great music, witty banter and heartwarming stories. “Their voices blend and soar majestically like eagles!” – Rex Reed, The New York Observer

DISNEY IN CONCERT – Magical Music from the Movies
Saturday, June 6, 2015 at 7:30pm
Mortensen Hall
Timeless images synchronized with live music will transport you to your favorite Disney musical moments.  Bring the whole family to see Disney’s beloved animation and hear the HSO perform arrangements from early classics to recent releases, including The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins, Tarzan, and others.
Presentation licensed by Disney Concert Library © Disney.


Hartford Symphony Orchestra 2014-2015 Season Sponsor: Travelers
Masterworks Series Sponsors: MetLife Foundation and The Edward C. and Ann T. Roberts Foundation
POPS! Series Presenting Sponsor: United Technologies

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The Bushnell: 166 Capitol Ave. Hartford, CT 06106