Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Park Avenue Chamber Symphony Launches its 20/21 New Season

Article Pixel
Park Avenue Chamber Symphony Launches its 20/21 New Season

The Park Avenue Chamber Symphony and its Music Director David Bernard, have announced the Manhattan-based orchestra's 2020-2021 season. Looking ahead with hope to the subsiding of the COVID-19 healthcare crisis, David Bernard has planned a season of unforgettable experiences, introspection and a celebration of the orchestra's 20th anniversary, postponed from May 2020, featuring Misha Dichter performing his signature concerto, Beethoven's Emperor.

"It is difficult to plan a season in the midst of the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus crisis," says Bernard, who has himself recovered from COVID-19, "but it is at the same time thrilling to explore the possibilities of bringing music back to my fellow New Yorkers. I've always felt that the process of music, and of all art for that matter, is the ultimate expression of optimism. It takes an intense optimism to make the world a better place through the creation of art, and it is this intense optimism in all artists that drives our determination to not only bring us through this difficult time, but also to plan for the future. It in this spirit that our 2020-2021 season has been planned - a bold statement that music will go on, in defiance against the uncertainty brought on by the pandemic."

The season will start on November 21st at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music, with "Beethoven's Bombshell" - an event designed to honor Beethoven's 250th birthday by exploring how Beethoven's Third Symphony, the Eroica, occupies its monumental place in classical music. On February 6th, also at the DiMenna Center for Classical Music, "Mahler's Triumph" will feature Mahler's magnificent and breathtaking Fifth Symphony.

Both the November and February Concerts are planned as a partnership with InsideOut Concerts, with the audience seated amongst the musicians - including a shortened 2pm event for families including young children, followed by an instrument zoo in collaboration with the Lucy Moses School. At 5pm, the full works experience for adults is followed by a reception with the performers.

"Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, audiences have been kept at a distance from the musicians - provided with online media, streaming and digital recordings," says Bernard. "To thrive while emerging from the silence, it is therefore essential for orchestras to incorporate in their planning how to tear audiences away from their digital appliances and bring them back to live events. Our partnership with InsideOut Concerts re-ignites the excitement and visceral enjoyment of the live classical music experience in audiences that is so important now. New and innovative approaches are going to be vital. The unspoken truth is that as much as we hear about a 'new normal' necessitated by current circumstances, the 'old normal' must survive for classical music to thrive."

On May 16th, 2021, in a very special event celebrating the orchestra's first 20 years, Misha Dichter will join Maestro Bernard and the Orchestra to perform Beethoven's Emperor Concerto. This concert will be the first time the leading pianist has played this signature work in Manhattan since 1984. "It was listening to Misha Dichter playing the Emperor in performance as a student that drove me to a life in music, and to pursue conducting." says Bernard. So he is thrilled to now come full circle and collaborate on that same work with Dichter himself. The gala concert will be held at the Rose Theater at Lincoln Center - a venue where the orchestra has held many of its most important concerts during the past 20 years, including Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring and Bartok's Concerto For Orchestra. Also on the program for the gala concert will be Verdi's Overture to La forza del destino and Prokofiev's Symphony No. 5.

Tickets for the November and February events are now available online here: Tickets for the 20th Anniversary Gala performance at Lincoln Center will be available from the Lincoln Center box office in the Fall.

The orchestra is monitoring the COVID-19 situation very closely and will ensure complete compliance with government health regulations, including format changes if necessary, to ensure the health and safety of the musicians and concert goers.

Related Articles View More Classical Music Stories

More Hot Stories For You