Renee Fleming to Headline TSO's 2016-17 Season Opener

Led by Music Director Peter Oundjian, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (TSO) opens its 95th season on Wednesday, September 21 at Roy Thomson Hall with a sumptuous performance by the radiant soprano Renée Fleming.

After a six-year absence from the TSO stage, Fleming returns with her magnetic presence, and golden voice, for an evening of audience favourites from composers ranging from Tosti and Rossini, to Ravel and Rodgers.

- On September 23 and 24, Norwegian violinist Henning Kraggerud shares the stage with the TSO and Peter Oundjian for the Sibelius Violin Concerto. The masterpiece is framed by Butterfly Wings and Tropical Storms, by Canadian composer Randolph Peters, and one of Rachmaninoff's best-known works, the powerful Symphony No. 2.

- On September 28 and 29, Peter Oundjian is back on the podium for Mahler Symphony 3. The TSO joins forces with the sensational, award-winning mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton-who made her acclaimed TSO début in Verdi's Requiem in May 2015-the women of the Amadeus Choir and the Elmer Iseler Singers (Lydia Adams, Artistic Director), and the Toronto Children's Chorus (Elise Bradley, Artistic Director), adding extra lustre to this gorgeous hymn to the natural world.

- On October 4 and 5, TSO Principal Pops Conductor Steven Reineke brings his boundless energy and brilliance to The Music of ABBA, with the incomparable Finnish vocal ensemble Rajaton. Back by popular demand, the program is a tribute to the '70s Swedish pop group.

- Beethoven & Tchaikovsky, on October 8 and 9, marks the highly anticipated TSO début of American conductor Karina Canellakis. Winner of the 2016 Sir Georg Solti Conducting Award, Canellakis leads a brilliant program comprising Mozart's Overture to The Marriage of Figaro; Beethoven Symphony 4; and Tchaikovsky's much-loved Violin Concerto, spotlighting American/Korean violinist Esther Yoo, who also makes her TSO début.

- Piano phenomenon Yuja Wang returns to the TSO, on October 13 and 15, to perform Bartók's virtuosic Piano Concerto No. 3, teaming up with the equally dynamic Polish conductor Krzysztof Urba?ski. Grieg's Suite No. 1 from Peer Gynt and Dvo?ák's glorious Symphony No. 9 "From the New World" round out the program.

- On October 14, the Exposed Series opens with What Makes It Great? Pictures at an Exhibition. With his congenial personality and captivating approach, conductor & host Rob Kapilow provides a unique experience by taking the audience inside Mussorgsky's kaleidoscopic piece

- Launching the Young People's Concerts on October 22, the TSO and Canadian conductor Lucas Waldin invite audience members of all ages to dress up for Symphony Spooktacular, featuring Tha Spot Halloween Dancers, for two one-hour performances filled with classical favourites-perfect for a haunted Halloween.

- On October 26 and 27, celebrated Estonian/American conductor Kristjan Järvi and Russian pianist Denis Kozhukhin both make their TSO débuts in Rachmaninoff & Gershwin-the first concert of The Decades Project for the 2016/17 season. The program features Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 4, Gershwin's jazzy Rhapsody in Blue, and Kodály's Suite from Háry János. Also, from the ranks of the TSO, Eri Kosaka and Shane Kim take centre stage to perform Duet for Two Violins and Strings by Steve Reich.

- October 29 and 30 mark this season's launch of the TSO's popular Films with Live Orchestra Series. Danny Elfman's Music from the Films of Tim Burton features themes and songs from Danny Elfman's iconic film scores to Batman, Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and more. Known as an authority on the musical-theatre repertoire, Ted Sperling conducts The Combined forces of the TSO and the Orpheus Choir of Toronto (Robert Cooper, Artistic Director).

The TSO Season Presenting Sponsor is BMO Financial Group. The 2016/17 season is dedicated to H. Thomas Beck in recognition of his vital and longstanding support of the TSO.

For more, follow the TSO on Twitter: @TorontoSymphony, Facebook:, YouTube:, and Instagram:

Founded in 1922, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra is one of Canada's most important cultural institutions, recognized internationally. Music Director Peter Oundjian leads the TSO with a commitment to innovative programming and audience development through a broad range of performances that showcase the exceptional talents of the Orchestra along with a roster of distinguished guest artists and conductors. The TSO also serves the larger community with TSOUNDCHECK, the original under-35 ticket program; the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra; and music-education programs that reach tens of thousands of students each year.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Tichler

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