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Utah Symphony Performs First Masterworks Of The 2018-19 Season

The last two weekends in September mark the first Masterworks concerts of the 2018-19 season, both conducted by Thierry Fischer. These concerts feature Beethoven's "Ode to Joy" and Gershwin's "An American in Paris." Tickets are priced from $15-$66 and can be purchased at or by calling (801) 533-6683.

On September 21 and 22, join the Utah Symphony for the Masterworks series season-launching event that will showcase Utah Symphony Principal Keyboard Jason Hardink in composer Andrew Norman's "Suspend" fantasy piano concerto, and witness the Utah Symphony and Utah Symphony Chorus combine to present Beethoven's "Ode to Joy" with guest vocalists. On September 28 and 29, the Utah Symphony presents a jazz-filled evening that starts on the bustling streets of Paris in An American in Paris, followed by works from the same jazz-filled era.

Experience the full season of your classical favorites in the Masterworks series. Highlights include Beethoven's "Ode to Joy," Bernstein's "Candide" with the Utah Symphony, complete Brandenburg Concertos by J.S. Bach, UNWOUND: Rach 2 and more. Please note that start times for performances on this series vary between 5:30 PM (six performances), 7 PM (one performance), and 7:30 PM (11 performances). The March 23 performance of UNWOUND: Rach 2 is part of our new casual concert experience.


On September 21 and 22, experience the brilliance of Andrew Norman, one of America's most inventive young composers and the Utah Symphony's new Composer-in-Association. His fantasy piano concerto "Suspend" will envelop you with its dream-like quality of improvisation. Then buckle up for Beethoven's final symphonic utterance, the Ninth, bursting with power and energy and culminating with the famous "Ode to Joy." You won't want to miss this season-launching event, which is sure to delight all music lovers. Tickets are priced from $15-$66 and can be purchased at or by calling (801) 533-6683.

This performance, conducted by Thierry Fischer, will feature many soloists as well as the University of Utah choirs joining the Utah Symphony Chorus, with Barlow Bradford as the chorus director, to perform Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 "Choral" with its inspiring "Ode to Joy" finale.

Andrew Norman is a composer of orchestral, chamber, and vocal music. His work draws on an eclectic mix of sounds and notational practices from both the avant-garde and classical traditions. He is increasingly interested in story-telling in music, and specifically in the ways non-linear, narrative-scrambling techniques from other time-based media like movies and video games might intersect with traditional symphonic forms. His distinctive, often fragmented and highly energetic voice has been cited in "The New York Times" for its "daring juxtapositions and dazzling colors," in "The Boston Globe" for its "staggering imagination," and in "The L.A. Times" for its "audacious" spirit and "Chaplinesque" wit.

Pianist Jason Hardink is the Principal Symphony Keyboard of the Utah Symphony and was Artistic Director of the NOVA Chamber Music Series for nine seasons. His performances include a wide-ranging repertoire of music by living composers and works of the historical canon.Mr. Hardink has appeared as guest recitalist and adjudicator for both the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition and the Oberlin International Piano Competition. He has recently served as guest artist for the University of Utah Summer Chamber Music Workshop and the Idaho State University Summer Piano Institute.

Music Director of the Utah Symphony since 2009 and currently extended to 2022, Thierry Fischer has revitalized the orchestra with creative programming, critically acclaimed performances, and new recordings. Highlights of his tenure include a multi-season Haydn symphony cycle; Mahler, Beethoven and Nielsen cycles; and two tours of Utah's state and national parks with free outdoor performances. In celebration of its 75th anniversary season, the orchestra appeared at Carnegie Hall in April 2016 to critical acclaim and released an album of newly commissioned works by Nico Muhly, Andrew Norman, and Augusta Read Thomas on Reference Recordings.

Composer-in-Association Andrew Norman will participate in three school outreach programs during the week leading up to his performances. On Wed. Sept. 19 and Thurs. Sept. 20, he will hold a composing-with-kids workshop based on "Drip Blip Sparkle" to Washington Elementary School's after school piano program that is run by the University of Utah piano outreach. On Fri. Sept. 21, Mr. Norman will host a score reading workshop with student composers at American Heritage Charter School who are part of Lyceum Philharmonic. On Sat. Sept. 21, he will participate in a "meet the composer" event at the Gifted Music School with string musicians who will be performing his string quartet "An Index of Peculiar Strokes" with their string ensemble this year.

A pre-concert lecture free to all ticketholders will take place at all Masterworks Series performances in Abravanel Hall's First Tier Room 45 minutes prior to each performance.


On September 28 and 29, grab your passport and travel to the streets of Paris in the jazz age. Conducted by Thierry Fischer and featuring pianist Alexandre Tharaud, George Gershwin's "An American in Paris" will delight you today just as it did audiences at its debut. From the same era, Ravel's Piano Concerto in G is also deeply infused with jazz idioms and harmonies. The program concludes with Schubert's majestic Symphony No. 9, nicknamed "The Great C Major." Tickets are priced from $15-$66 and can be purchased at or by calling (801) 533-6683.

Alexandre Tharaud is a French pianist who is active on the concert stage and has released a large and diverse discography. He has performed all over the world as a soloist and has released several recorded albums. Alexandre's discography reflects his eclectic affinity to many musical styles. His recordings range from Bach, Mozart and Haydn (with Les Violons du Roy) to The Beef on the Roof: a homage to the roaring twenties.Other discsfor ERATO include Autograph, Scarlatti, Diary (Chopin) and the major release of 2016: Bach's Goldberg Variations, a film, which was awarded the ECHO Klassik 2016 in the "Music-DVD-Production of the Year" category.

Tickets, priced from $15-$66, are available for purchase through or by calling (801) 533-6683.

About the Utah Symphony

Founded in 1940, the Utah Symphony performs more than 175 concerts each season and offers all Utahns easy access to world-class live musical performances of the world's greatest music in the state's top venues. Since being named the orchestra's seventh music director in 2009, Thierry Fischer has attracted leading musicians and top soloists, refreshed programming, drawn increased audiences, and galvanized community support. In addition to numerous regional and domestic tours, including the Mighty 5 Tour of Utah's national parks, the Utah Symphony has embarked on seven international tours and performed at Carnegie Hall in spring 2016 coinciding with the orchestra's 75th anniversary celebrations. The Utah Symphony has released more than 100 recordings, including Mahler's Symphony No. 8 in Fall 2017, Mahler's Symphony No. 1 (2015) and Dawn to Dust (2016), which features three Utah Symphony-commissioned works by Nico Muhly, Andrew Norman, and Augusta Read Thomas. Utah Symphony | Utah Opera, the orchestra's parent organization, reaches 450,000 residents in Utah and the Intermountain region, with educational outreach programs serving around 140,000 students annually. In addition to performances in its home in Salt Lake City, Abravanel Hall, and concerts throughout the state of Utah, the Utah Symphony participates in Utah Opera's four annual productions at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre and presents the six-week Deer Valley Music Festival each summer in Park City, Utah. With its many subscription, education, and outreach concerts and tours, the Utah Symphony is one of the most engaged orchestras in the nation. For more information visit

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