LSM Newswire

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Jonathan Nott makes his Cleveland Orchestra debut in program featuring Strauss's Also sprach Zarathustra at Severance Hall on November 19 and 21

Cleveland Orchestra Artist-in-Residence Alisa Weilerstein
is soloist in the Dvořák Cello Concerto

Concerts include world premiere of Julian Anderson’s Fantasias

CLEVELAND, October 23, 2009 – Jonathan Nott, chief conductor of Germany’s Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, will make his debut with The Cleveland Orchestra conducting a program featuring Strauss’s Also Sprach Zarathustra (Thus Spake Zarathustra) at Severance Hall on Thursday, November 19, and Saturday, November 21, at 8:00 p.m. (He will also conduct the Orchestra’s Fridays@7 concert on November 20 at 7:00 p.m.)

The program for November 19 and 21 begins with the world premiere of Julian Anderson’s Fantasias. Mr. Anderson was The Cleveland Orchestra’s Daniel R. Lewis Young Composer Fellow for the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons. The program continues with Antonín Dvořák’s Cello Concerto in B minor, Opus 104, with Cleveland Orchestra Artist-in-Residence Alisa Weilerstein as soloist. After intermission, the program concludes with Richard Strauss’s Also sprach Zarathustra (Thus Spake Zarathustra), Opus 30.

British conductor Jonathan Nott has established himself as a conductor of opera at the Frankfurt Opera and Wiesbaden Opera, as well as a conductor of orchestral repertoire, through his work as principal conductor of the Lucerne Symphony Orchestra (1997-2002), chief conductor of the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra since 2000, and guest conductor internationally.

Mr. Nott has an ongoing relationship with the Ensemble Modern and the Ensemble Intercontemporain. He has said, “For some people, contemporary work is put in as a sort of apology. But if I’ve programmed a John Adams piece before Beethoven’s Seventh, it’s because people will listen to the Beethoven differently afterwards.”

About Julian Anderson’s Fantasias:
In a program note about Fantasias, Julian Anderson writes, “The tradition of the fantasia in Western music is that of caprice and deliberate willfulness on the surface of the music, as in the wonderful keyboard Fantasias of C.P.E. Bach, with an underlying harmonic coherence holding the whole together. In this work, I have adopted both features.”

Fantasias, written between 2007 and 2009, consists of five movements, each focusing on a different group of instruments – for example, brass only for the first movement, and full orchestra featuring string and wind textures in the third movement.

Mr. Anderson calls the fourth movement a “fast, almost comic scherzo” in which different groups of instruments are intercut like a Tom and Jerry cartoon.

The finale he describes as “a single headlong rush – with just two moments of repose and slackness to allow the listener, the performers (and the composer!) to get their bearings before, roller-coaster like, the music hurtles on its way.”

Concert Previews will be given prior to the November 19 and 21 concerts, beginning at 7:00 p.m., in Reinberger Chamber Hall. The Preview, titled “Meet the Composer,” will feature Julian Anderson in conversation with Gary Ginstling, Cleveland Orchestra general manager. Concert Previews are designed to enrich the concert-going experience by providing historical background and critical insight into the music performed at each concert. This series is funded by a generous endowment gift from Dorothy Humel Hovorka.


Thursday, November 19, at 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 21, at 8:00 p.m.

Severance Hall

JONATHAN NOTT, conductor

J. ANDERSON Fantasias
(World Premiere)
DVOŘÁK Cello Concerto
R. STRAUSS Also sprach Zarathustra (Thus Spake Zarathustra)

Ticket Prices: $31-$87 – Call (216) 231-1111 or 800-686-1141, or order online at



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