National Symphony announces first season under Eschenbach

Posted on: March 3, 2010

“Christoph Eschenbach is starting his National Symphony Orchestra tenure with a bit of a bang,” writes Anne Midgette in Wednesday’s (3/3) Washington Post. “His inaugural season bears a personal stamp, and a good balance of repertory standards (all of Beethoven’s piano concertos) and new works (a world premiere by Peter Lieberson for the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s inauguration). … Eschenbach, leading 10 of the 24 weeks of classical programming, is offering tastes of a number of his specialties. There’s Mahler: the Fourth and Fifth symphonies and ‘Kindertotenlieder’ (part of a season-long emphasis on orchestral song, starting with [Renée] Fleming singing Strauss’s ‘Four Last Songs’ at the opening gala). There’s contemporary music: He’s leading the first NSO performances of works by Matthias Pintscher (‘Hérodiade-Fragmente’) and Osvaldo Golijov (‘She Was Here,’ the composer’s orchestration of four Schubert songs, with Dawn Upshaw), as well as the American premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’s ‘Juggler in Paradise,’ her Third Violin Concerto, an NSO co-commission performed by an Eschenbach protege, Jennifer Koh. … Eschenbach also is interested in crossing disciplines, evidenced by the NSO’s contributions to the Kennedy Center’s ‘maximum INDIA’ festival.”

Posted March 3, 2010