FWSO announces 2016-17 season

FWSO 2016 season information

Symphonic subscriptions range from $160 to $595; pops subscriptions range from $175 to $511. Single tickets will go on sale in late July.

For more information, call 817-665-6000 or visit www.fwsymphony.org

Posted 7:29am on Saturday, Feb. 13, 2016

Although the Fort Worth Symphony has been in the news for budget deficits and an ongoing wage dispute between administration and musicians, the arts organization is having one of the most acclaimed years in Miguel Harth-Bedoya’s 16 years as music director.

Critics have praised his work more than ever, but Harth-Bedoya is most proud of the fact that in a year when his musicians could have had low morale, they played their hearts out.

“This orchestra is here to play at the highest level and to follow my leadership,” he says, “and that’s what we’re here to do: make music.”

He says that commitment will continue into the 2016-17 season, which was announced today.

The season is, as usual, a mix of classical favorites, lesser-known pieces and newer works by contemporary composers.

“Restaurants do that all the time,” Harth-Bedoya says. “The special of the chef comes with other options in case you want a traditional plate of something you already know you love.”

Among the traditional works, he’s especially looking forward to conducting Bruckner’s Symphony No. 7 and Richard Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben, he says, because he has never conducted them with this orchestra.

Previous composers-in-residence Mason Bates and Adam Schoenberg will return, and this season introduces Colombian composer Victor Agudelo to Fort Worth. In February 2017, the FWSO will play the world premiere of Agudelo’s La Madre de Agua.

“I believe firmly in using [living] composers. ... Because of them we have music to play,” he says.

The symphonic series will bring back guests soloists such as violinist Karen Gomyo and pianist Vadym Kholodenko. The pops season includes a screening of Steven Spielberg’s film E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial as the orchestra plays the John Williams score, as well as programs with music by Burt Bacharach, Simon & Garfunkel, Ray Charles and Rodgers and Hammerstein, and programs from the Motown catalog and James Bond films.

For special concerts, look for jazz trumpeter Chris Botti, an Ella Fitzgerald tribute and, of course, Handel’s Messiah. The season begins with the Classical Masters Festival featuring the works of Beethoven, Haydn and Mozart, the second in a three-year cycle of concerts focusing on these composers in this annual series presented as a late-August prelude to the symphony’s regular concert season.

The Fort Worth Symphony 2016-17 season at a glance:

Classical Masters Festival

The Music of Beethoven, Haydn and Mozart: Aug. 26-28, Harth-Bedoya conducting

Aug. 26: FWSO with Ana Victoria Luperi, FWSO principal clarinet (Haydn’s Symphony No. 96, “The Miracle;” Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto; Beethoven’s Overture to Fidelio; and Haydn’s Symphony No. 45, “Farewell.” With a pre-concert performance by Vadym Kholodenko (Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 11 in B-flat major, Opus 22).

Aug. 27: FWSO with Allan Steele, FWSO principal cello (Mozart’s Ballet Music from Idomeneo; Haydn’s Cello Concerto in D; and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 1). With a pre-concert performance by Kholodenko (Mozart’s Piano Sonata No. 11 in A major, K. 331, “Alla Turca”).

Aug. 28: FWSO with Kholodenko (Haydn’s Overture to L’infedelta delusa; Mozart’s Symphony No. 25; and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4). With a pre-concert performance by FWSO principals Michael Shih, Adriane De Costa, Laura Bruton and Steele (Haydn String Quartet in G minor, Opus 74, No. 3, “The Rider”).

Symphonic Series

Sept. 9-11: “Dvorak’s New World Symphony” with James Ehnes, violin. (Shostakovich’s Festive Overture and Violin Concerto No. 1; Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9, “From the New World”). Harth-Bedoya conducts.

Sept. 30, Oct. 1-2: “Hough Plays Rachmaninoff” with pianist Stephen Hough and visiting composer Mason Bates. (Bates’ Anthology of Fantastic Zoology; Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1; and Tchaikovsky’s Capriccio Italien.) Harth-Bedoya conducts.

Nov. 4-6: “Elgar’s Enigma Variations” with tenor Paul Appleby and FWSO’s Molly Norcross, horn. (Thomas Ades’ Three Studies from Couperin; Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn & Strings; and Elgar’s Enigma Variations.) Nicholas Carter conducts.

Nov. 18-20: “Grieg Piano Concerto” with pianist Kholodenko. (Grieg’s Piano Concerto and Bruckner’s Symphony No. 7.) Harth-Bedoya conducts.

Jan. 13-15, 2017: “Tchaikovsky’s Pathetique.” (J. Strauss’ Roses From the South; Piston’s Suite from The Incredible Flutist; and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6, “Pathetique.”) David Danzmayr conducts.

Feb. 3-5, 2017: “Brahms Symphony No. 1” with pianist Inon Barnatan. (Sibelius’ Symphony No. 7; Bartok’s Piano Concerto No. 3; and Brahms’ Symphony No. 1.) Christoph König conducts.

Feb. 24-26, 2017: “Saint-Saens Organ Symphony” with cellist Johannes Moser and visiting composer Victor Agudelo. (World premiere of Agudelo’s La Madre de Agua; Dvorak’s Cello Concerto; and Saint-Saens’ Symphony No. 3, “Organ.”) Harth-Bedoya conducts.

March 17-19, 2017: “Gomyo Plays Mozart” with violinist Karen Gomyo. (Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 3, “Strassburg”; and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 11, “The Year 1905.”) Andrew Grams conducts.

April 7-9, 2017: “Prokofiev Cinderella Suite” with violinist Alexandra Soumm and visiting composer Adam Schoenberg. (Schoenberg’s La Luna Azul; Sibelius’ Violin Concerto; and Prokofiev’s Cinderella Suite.) Harth-Bedoya conducts.

May 12-14, 2017: “Kholodenko Plays Brahms” with pianist Kholodenko. (Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major; and R. Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben.) Harth-Bedoya conducts.

Pops Series

Sept. 2-4: E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. The FWSO will perform John Williams’ Academy Award-winning score in sync to the film projected in HD. Constantine Kitsopoulos conducts.

Oct. 14-16: “The Beat Goes On! Music of the Baby Boomers.” Music from TV and movies, including hits by Burt Bacharach, Simon & Garfunkel and Frankie Valli. Jack Everly conducts.

Nov. 11-13: “The Sounds of America” with a special guest narrator. Bob Bernhardt conducts.

Nov. 25-27: “Home for the Holidays.” Andres Franco conducts.

Jan. 27-29, 2017: “Ray Charles, Motown, and Beyond!” with Ellis Hall on piano and vocals. A soulful celebration, including hits Georgia on My Mind, Hit the Road Jack, Ain’t No Mountain, Let the Good Times Roll, and more. Ron Spigelman conducts.

March 10-12, 2017: “Rodgers & Hammerstein at the Movies.” Remastered clips from musicals with original vocals and a live soundtrack, including Oklahoma!, The King and I, South Pacific and Carousel. Stuart Malina conducts.

March 31-April 2, 2017: “007: The Music of James Bond,” with vocalist Rachel York. Music by iconic songwriters, from Shirley Bassey to Paul McCartney and Carly Simon to Adele. Stuart Malina conducts.

Special concerts

Dec. 1: Jazz trumpeter Chris Botti.

Dec. 2: Handel’s Messiah, featuring the Southwestern Seminary Master Chorale. David Thye conducts.

Dec. 31: “New Year’s Eve: A Tribute to Ella Fitzgerald,” with vocalist Carmen Bradford. Damon Gupton conducts.

Jan. 7, 2017: “The Legend of Zelda.” A multimedia concert, presenting 30 years of music from the “Legend of Zelda” franchise.


Feb. 11, 2017: “The Mozart Gala” features soprano Danielle de Niese and pianist Menahem Pressler. The orchestra will perform Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23 and concert and opera arias, overtures and more. Harth-Bedoya conducts.

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