So … now that I’ve sort of recovered from the socializing and from teaching my two students (the third canceled and these two forgot to pay … hmmm. Not the most stellar teaching day!), I’ll blog more a bit about what I heard this morning.

Three woodwind soloists from the orchestra will be playing. I already mentioned Russ deLuna will be playing in Copland’s Quiet City. Bassoonist Stephen Paulson will be playing Ciranda des sete notas by Villa-Lobos. Should I bravely mention I don’t know this work at all? No. I think I’ll not tell you that. I would probably be embarrassed if I did. Carey Bell will be soloing on Debussy’s Première Rapsoide for clarinet. All three of these works are ones I’d be very interested in hearing. From one bassoonist’s reaction (Hi, Imani!), the Villa-Lobos is a must hear for bassoonists. MTT mentioned that they want to feature more orchestra members in solo roles in the coming years.

They are doing two new commissions. One is by Avner Dorman (Who? Geesh … I’m feeling like an idiot here! But I’m not going to tell you I don’t know his name. Nope.), called Uriah. David Robertson will be conducting that concert (it also includes some Dukas and Prokofiev). We were told that it was originally going to have “The man the king wanted dead” as the title (or was it attached to the the title?) but that has been nixed. The other commission is Rufus Wainwright’s Five Shakespeare Sonnets which, if I’m understanding correctly, was originally to be done this year. Jeffrey Kahane will conduct the Wainwright set, and the concert also includes the Ravel G major piano concerto (best English horn solo ever) and Weill’s second symphony (which again I will not admit that I don’t know. At all.). By the way, I do know who Wainwright is. So there.

The Mahler recording project that they started in 2001 will be completed this year. Songs for Orchestra will feature my absolute favorite, Rückert Lieder (another best English horn solo ever), with Susan Graham and Thomas Hampson on Songs of a Wayfarer. We were told that 2011 is the 100th anniversary of Mahler’s death. MTT wittily mentioned something like (and pardon me if I’m slightly off with the quote) “it’s the 137th anniversary of his Bar Mitzvah. News you can use. 😉

But what’s next? Since they are finishing up with Mahler, is there something else in store? Sounds like that’s a big “yes”. But we weren’t told just what, yet. Hmmm. Should we guess? Maybe. Maybe not. I might guess American. I might guess Ives. But I might be wrong. So I probably won’t guess. Yet.

Oh … and speaking of Mahler … the third season of Keeping Score will be about him, and I’ll definitely want that! We saw a small portion of it. It wouldn’t have even taken that to sell me on it, but it looked wonderful.

Okay. Enough of me rambling on and on.

Season Highlights
SF Symphony’s 2010-11 season (pdf)


  1. “it’s the 137th anniversary of his Bar Mitzvah. News you can use.”

    I Googled it and, yes, he lived 51 years. Longer than Mozart or Mendelssohn, but the good ones seem to die too young…

  2. I’m always so surprised to hear that someone lived such a short life. Especially when I’m past that age now.

  3. You know, I did not realize that Mahler died so relatively young until that press conference either! & I wish they could have told us more about Avner Dorman besides the story of the rejected title. You are correct that the Rufus Wainwright program was originally supposed to happen this season. Rufus had to cancel due to family issues, apparently.

    Ives is a good guess.

  4. I’m glad I’m not the only one who learned that bit about Mahler. I just had this notion that he was older than that. I’m not sure where I got that idea, but there you go. (Perhaps because he wrote so many symphonies and he did so much, between Europe and conducting in New York?)

    I looked for music by Dorman on emusic & iTunes. Sure didn’t come up with much. Two albums total that include two concerti, one for piccolo and one for mandolin. Some piano. And a concerto grosso that, when listening to a tiny snippet, had a small Philip Glass moment (but who knows if I’d still really think that way if I downloaded the work in its entirety).

    Once MTT said it was “family issues” Wainwright’s delay made more sense. I checked when I got home and, sure enough, I had blogged about the postponement. They initially said it was due to a scheduling conflict. I’m going to guess it was about the very sad illness of his mother, who then passed away.

  5. Hi Imani! So did you get visits from my little link? Hope so! 🙂