THE MINNESOTA ORCHESTRA AND MUSIC DIRECTOR OSMO VÄNSKÄ RETURN TO CARNEGIE HALL TO PERFORM AN ALL-SIBELIUS PROGRAM WITH VIOLINIST HILARY HAHN THURSDAY, MARCH 3 AT 8:00 PM

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THE MINNESOTA ORCHESTRA AND MUSIC DIRECTOR OSMO VÄNSKÄ RETURN TO CARNEGIE HALL TO PERFORM AN ALL-SIBELIUS PROGRAM
WITH VIOLINIST HILARY HAHN THURSDAY, MARCH 3 AT 8:00 PM

Photo credit: Greg Helgeson

NEW YORK, NY (January 18, 2016) – The Minnesota Orchestra returns to New York’s Carnegie Hall for the first time in five years with an all-Sibelius program led by Finnish Music Director Osmo Vänskä which features violinist Hilary Hahn in the composer’s Violin Concerto. The concert, held on Thursday, March 3, also includes Sibelius’ First Symphony, a work that confirmed Sibelius’ status as a Finnish national hero, and his Third Symphony. Mr. Vänskä and the Orchestra, renowned for their performances of the Nordic repertoire, particularly the works of Sibelius, honor the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth with multiple programs of his music throughout the season.

The performance takes place at Carnegie Hall in Stern Auditorium Thursday, March 3, at 8:00 p.m., preceded by a pre-concert talk with Glenda Dawn Goss of the Helsinki Sibelius Academy at 7 p.m. Tickets priced from $16 to $95 are available from Carnegie Hall by phone at (212) 247-7800, online at www.carnegiehall.org, or in person at the box office.

In 2012 the Orchestra launched a Sibelius recording cycle on the BIS label with a release of the composer’s Second and Fifth Symphonies that was nominated for a Grammy Award. The second album in the series, featuring the First and Fourth Symphonies, won the 2014 Grammy Award for Best Orchestral Performance. The Orchestra recorded Sibelius’ Third, Sixth and Seventh Symphonies in May and June 2015, and in February 2016 they will record live concert performances of Kullervo and Finlandia, all for future release.

The 2015-2016 season marks the 150th anniversary of composer Jean Sibelius’ birth. Sibelius, who is widely considered Finland’s finest composer, is famous for his influence on the development of a Finnish national identity. Mr. Vänskä and the Minnesota Orchestra pay homage to the composer and violinist this season through performances of many of his most famous works, including his Violin Concerto, the well-known Finlandia, the choral symphony Kullervo, numerous tone poems and several of his seven symphonies.

A recent milestone was the Orchestra’s historic tour to Cuba in May 2015, which marked the first performance by a major U.S. orchestra in Cuba since Presidents Obama and Castro took steps to normalize relations between the countries in December 2014. The tour included two performances in Havana at the Teatro Nacional which were part of the 19th annual International Cubadisco Festival, and several musical exchanges between Orchestra musicians and students, ranging from coaching sessions with high school and university student musicians to rehearsing with a Cuban youth symphony to playing jazz music with Cuban professionals. Upon its return to the U.S., the Orchestra performed a “Celebrate Cuba!” concert that continued the international musical exchange by welcoming Cuban choir Coro Entrevoces to the Orchestra’s home venue, Minneapolis’ Orchestra Hall.
Hilary Hahn, violinist
In the more than two decades since her professional debut, three-time Grammy Award-winning violinist Hilary Hahn has brought her virtuosity, expansive interpretations, and creative repertoire to diverse global audiences. In the 2015-2016 season, Hahn plays Mozart’s 5th violin concerto with the Camerata Salzburg and Vieuxtemps’s 4th violin concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Vienna Philharmonic, and the NDR Hannover. Both pieces are from her most recent album, Mozart 5, Vieuxtemps 4 – Violin Concertos. Other highlights include the Dvořák Violin Concerto for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s 100th anniversary season, a European tour with the Vienna Symphony, the Sibelius Violin Concerto with the Minnesota Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, and a recital tour throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan. She is artist in residency at the Vienna Konzerthaus.

Hahn, who often collaborates with non-classical musicians, has released sixteen albums, three DVD’s, an Oscar-nominated movie soundtrack and an award-winning recording for children. An avid writer, she posts regularly on her website, hilaryhahn.com. On her YouTube channel, youtube.com/hilaryhahnvideos, she interviews guests from around the world; her violin case comments on life as a traveling companion on Twitter and Instagram at @violincase.  Her ever-evolving approach to music-making and her curiosity about the world have made her a fan favorite.
Osmo Vänskä, music director
Finnish conductor Osmo Vänskä, the Minnesota Orchestra’s tenth music director, has earned critical acclaim for his interpretations of the standard, contemporary, and Nordic repertoires. He has led the Orchestra on four European tours, as well as regular tours to communities across Minnesota. Vänskä is also principal guest conductor of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and conductor laureate of the Lahti Symphony Orchestra, which, during two decades as music director, he transformed into one of Finland’s flagship orchestras. Vänskä began his career as a clarinetist, holding major posts with the Helsinki Philharmonic and the Turku Philharmonic.
The Minnesota Orchestra
The Minnesota Orchestra has long ranked among the United States’ top symphonic ensembles, with a history of acclaimed performances at home and around the world. Founded in 1903 as the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra, the ensemble began touring in 1907 and became known as “the orchestra on wheels” for its cross-country tours. It has been heard nationally and internationally in award-winning broadcasts produced by Minnesota Public Radio, and it has received acclaim for its vast collection of recordings, dating back to the 1920s.  The ensemble’s ten music directors have included Eugene Ormandy, Dimitri Mitropoulos, Antal Dorati, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, Neville Marriner and, currently, Osmo Vänskä, who presides over a season typically encompassing 175 concerts that are heard live by 300,000 individuals. The Minnesota Orchestra makes its home at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis.

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Thursday, March 3 at 8:00 p.m.
Isaac Stern Auditorium
Carnegie Hall  

Minnesota Orchestra
Osmo Vänskä, conductor
Hilary Hahn, violin

SIBELIUS          Symphony No. 3
SIBELIUS          Violin Concerto
SIBELIUS          Symphony No. 1

The performance takes place at Carnegie Hall in Stern Auditorium Thursday, March 3, at 8:00 p.m., preceded by a pre-concert talk with Glenda Dawn Goss of the Helsinki Sibelius Academy at 7 p.m. Tickets priced from $16 to $95 are available from Carnegie Hall by phone at (212) 247-7800, online at www.carnegiehall.org, or in person at the box office.

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