Andris Nelsons replacing ailing conductor Christoph von Dohnányi for season-ending BSO concert
LENOX — Music Director Andris Nelsons will lead the Boston Symphony Orchestra in its traditional season-ending performance of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 at 2:30 p.m. on Aug. 28.
Christoph von Dohnányi, who was scheduled to lead the Ninth Symphony, has been forced to withdraw from the concert due to recent health challenges, and advice from his doctors to avoid any long distance flights for the next four months.
The Sunday afternoon performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony features the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Tanglewood Festival Chorus, and vocal soloists including soprano Rachel Willis-Sørensen, mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose, tenor Joseph Kaiser, and bass Günther Groissböck.
The program will open with Aaron Copland's "Quiet City," featuring BSO principals Thomas Rolfs on trumpet and Robert Sheena on English horn.
Maestro Nelsons returns to Tanglewood on Aug. 20 and 21 for two programs with the BSO.
At 8 p.m. on Aug. 20, he leads the orchestra and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus in Acts I and II of Verdi's "Aïda," featuring soprano Kristine Opolais in the title role, along with mezzo-soprano Violeta Urmana as Amneris, tenor Andrea Carè as the male lead and love interest Radamès, tenor Alfredo Nigro as the Messenger, baritone Franco Vassallo as Amonasro, bass Morris Robinson as The King, and bass Kwangchul Youn as Ramfis.
At 2:30 p.m. on Aug. 21, Maestro Nelsons leads a program largely made up of music influenced by Shakespeare, honoring the 400th anniversary of the Bard's death. The program includes the overture to Berlioz's "Béatrice et Bénédict" (based on Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing"); American composer George Tsontakis's "Sonnets," a Shakespeare-inspired concerto for English horn and orchestra commissioned by the BSO and featuring BSO English horn player Robert Sheena; Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet"; and Saint-Saëns's Piano Concerto No. 5, "Egyptian," featuring Croatian pianist Dejan Lazic, making his BSO and Tanglewood debuts, as soloist.
Following the close of the BSO's season, Tanglewood will host a series of performances, including NPR's weekly hour-long news quiz program, "Wait, Wait Don't Tell Me!, live at 8 p.m. on Sept. 1; The B-52s — known for hits such as "Love Shack," "Rock Lobster," and "Roam" — at 8 p.m. on Sept. 2; and Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Swing Orchestra performing "Dancing Under the Stars," a festive, toe-tapping performance, to close out the 2016 season in style, 8 p.m. on Sept. 3.
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