Louis Langree's First Concerts with Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Set for 11/8-10
The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra officially welcomes its new Music Director, Louis Langrée, with an inaugural concert program on November 8-10, 2013 that honors the Orchestra's rich history and ushers in an exciting new era for the CSO. Dr. Maya Angelou, one of the most inspiring voices of our time, will narrate Copland's iconic Lincoln Portrait, a work that received its world premiere by the CSO in 1942. The inaugural program, conducted by Mr. Langrée and taking place at Cincinnati's historic Music Hall, also features Beethoven's enormously popular Fifth Symphony, which was featured during the CSO's first season in 1895, and Jennifer Higdon's exhilarating On a Wire, a recent work co-commissioned by the Orchestra.
"My first concerts as Music Director honor the great traditions of the CSO," said Mr. Langrée. "We celebrate the tradition of performing great masterworks in Cincinnati with Beethoven. We celebrate the introduction of exciting new works that have become mainstays of the orchestral repertoire in Lincoln Portrait, and we continue that tradition by performing the Cincinnati premiere of a CSO co-commission with On a Wire. This exciting program represents the CSO's incredible legacy and ongoing journey."
Dr. Maya Angelou, award-winning author, poet, historian, civil rights activist, actress, playwright and director, narrates the text by Abraham Lincoln in Copland's poignant work accompanied by images of the Civil War and President Lincoln. The symphonic photochoreography, created by Westwater Arts, cues hundreds of thematically-related photographs with the live music. The images are projected onto a 440-square-foot, three-panel, panoramic screen suspended above the Orchestra. Westwater Arts has used this creative synthesis of music and imagery with over 150 orchestras across North America and abroad, providing a compelling new symphonic experience. November of 2013 marks the 150th anniversary of President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, from which much of the text is derived. Dr. Angelou's narration of Lincoln Portrait is part of a "Freedom Week" collaboration with the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and Cincinnati Museum Center. For more information about symphonic photochoreography, visit westwaterarts.com.
The program also features Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Jennifer Higdon's theatrical On a Wire, a recent work co-commissioned by the Orchestra, and performed with the ensemble eighth blackbird in its CSO debut. (This Grammy-winning ensemble is also in residence with the Orchestra this season, and members of eighth blackbird will be participating in a number of education and community engagement initiatives the week of the performances.)Beethoven's gripping Fifth Symphony closes this inaugural program. Arguably the most popular symphony ever composed, this iconic work was featured during the CSO's first season in 1895.