E.T.A. Hoffmann’s original story The Nutcracker and the Mouse King picks up the classic tale where Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s beloved ballet ends. This delightful evening—starring the San Francisco Symphony and Tony award-winning actor Alan Cumming—decorates Hoffmann’s story with music from Tchaikovsky’s tone poems, orchestral suites, and, of course, his famous The Nutcracker. Experience a rare holiday treat like never before, one that begins, as all great stories do, with, “Once upon a time…”
John Mauceri - Conductor; Alan Cumming - Narrator; San Francisco Symphony
All of Paris is a dizzying whirl in the life of Violetta, the most glamorous courtesan in high society. At last, she finds true love in shy, young Alfredo, but that same society — and her own illness — tear them apart in Verdi’s masterpiece.
When a handsome young soldier catches the eye of the most powerful woman in Gerolstein, he goes from Private to General in a flash! Now he’ll need a war to win—count on the Grand Duchess to make that happen. As ever, Offenbach’s lively score is a Pocket Opera specialty.
Passions run high in Palermo, until a newly appointed head-of-state decrees that all pleasures—including love—are forbidden. Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure is given musical life in Wagner’s second opera.
With one of the largest fortunes in all of Europe, Anna Glawari is the most eligible widow in all of Paris. Dozens of suitors try to waltz their way into her heart, in Lehár’s delightfully romantic operetta.
Our Creative Chair for Jazz is impossible to hem in, an artistic force who’s spent decades in pursuit of the next interesting sound. No matter if he’s playing acoustic post-bop or head-bobbing funk, any appearance by Herbie Hancock is a can’t-miss evening.
This concert is recommended for children ages 5 to 11.
The LA Phil’s Conductor Laureate—now Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony—exults in a program that includes his tribute to Frank Gehry, a major premiere by the exceedingly creative Gabriella Smith, and Strauss’ whirlwind of a symphonic poem that begins with an awesome fanfare to end all fanfares, well known for its use in 2001: A Space Odyssey.
Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Third Piano Concerto is often considered the most difficult concerto in the standard repertory but also one of his most loved for its Romantic lyricism. Acclaimed pianist Yefim Bronfman joins the Music Director of the Vienna State Opera, Philippe Jordan, for this richly melodic concert that concludes with a substantial suite from Sergei Prokofiev’s colorful ballet music inspired by Shakespeare’s iconic tragedy.
Hailed for his “staggering command of centuries of repertory” (The New Yorker), Igor Levit performs Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto—the first of his concertos written in his second period, heroic style. Former Dudamel Fellow Elim Chan, whom the Los Angeles Times praised for conducting with “sophisticated grace,” leads Mendelssohn’s sunny “Italian” Symphony as well as a U.S. premiere of Cloudline by Elizabeth Ogonek, which offers a lyrical homage to ancient musical forms and techniques.
The internationally recognized violin icon returns to Walt Disney Concert Hall with his longtime musical partner.
In 1943, Duke Ellington premiered two works about the experience of Black Americans—one, Black, Brown, and Beige, traced their collective history and another, New World A-Coming, imagined a hopeful future. Ellington wrote about the latter in his biography, “I visualized this new world as a place in the distant future, where there would be no war, no greed, no categorization, no non-believers, where love was unconditional, and no pronoun was good enough for God.” Within the context of the orchestra, Ellington explored these themes, as well as his faith, in many forms, from sacred concerts to extended suites to tone poems. He brought the full range of his musical vocabulary to bear on his symphonic work, weaving spirituals, jazz, blues, and even West Indian dance music into his orchestrations. In two programs over four nights, Thomas Wilkins leads the Los Angeles Philharmonic in a weekend dedicated to the orchestral music of a great American composer. Concerts in the Thursday 2 subscription series are generously supported by the Otis Booth Foundation.
Like Duke Ellington before him, Robert Glasper sees through the boundaries that are often laid down between genres and styles of music. An accomplished pianist respected by the jazz establishment, he’s also deeply in touch with the sounds that are shaping the 2020s, and is a go-to collaborator for everyone from Herbie Hancock to Kendrick Lamar. Together with an orchestra and some very special guests, he’ll erase the boundaries of time, too, bringing the music of Ellington into conversation with jazz’s present and its future.