Review: Atlanta Symphony gives world premiere of Leshnoff’s Symphony No. 2

Posted on: November 9, 2015

“Jonathan Leshnoff’s Symphony No. 2, ‘Innerspace’—an engaging, accessible force of new music from a composer with an approachable modern voice— is all about the ending,” writes Jon Ross in Saturday’s (11/7) Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “A silent fifth movement, with a tempo marking of ‘Unimaginable,’ is a brash choice after four movements of emotional, intense music, but that nothingness is as loud and affecting as any bombastic, triumphant coda. On Thursday night at Symphony Hall, Robert Spano and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra caught a star on the rise, presenting the world premiere of the 42-year-old Leshnoff’s symphony, an ASO commission, alongside Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7.” Spano and the ASO will give the world premiere of Leshnoff’s ‘Zohar’ oratorio, a joint commission with Carnegie Hall, this April in Atlanta and at Carnegie Hall. “In Symphony No. 2, five movements of unique character and material combine to create a composition that immediately feels alive.… Leshnoff’s work is tonal and comforting. Across the movements, there are influences of cherished composers … but the symphony is wholly unique.… The symphony was born from [Leshnoff’s] exploration of his Jewish heritage.… The orchestra played with astounding attention to detail and great control.”

Posted November 9, 2015