Music Director Marin Alsop Conducts Baltimore Symphony Orchestra & Singer of the World Winner Mezzo-Soprano Jamie Barton in Mahler’s Epic Third Symphony, January 29-31
Baltimore, Md. (January 13, 2015) — Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) Music Director Marin Alsop and the BSO present Mahler’s epic Third Symphony on Thursday, January 29 at 8 p.m. and Friday, January 30 at 8 p.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, and Saturday, January 31 at 8 p.m. at The Music Center at Strathmore. The vocal soloist for the fourth and fifth movements is American mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton, the 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World winner. The Baltimore Choral Arts Society Women’s Chorus and Peabody’s Children’s Chorus join Marin Alsop, Ms. Barton and the BSO on this program. Please see below for complete program details.
Throughout the 2014-2015 season, the BSO explores themes of spirituality and transcendence in eight programs. The sixth of these programs is Mahler’s Symphony No. 3. Often called Mahler’s “Nature Symphony,” the piece comes closest to realizing his belief that a symphony “should be like a world. It must embrace everything.” He stated that the entire symphony describes “all stages of evolution in a step-wise ascent, beginning with inanimate nature and ascending to the love of God,” embarking on a journey that starts with an expansive hymn to the pagan woodland god Pan, leading to worlds with flowers, creatures and then man, and culminating in the final two movements in the depiction of angels and love.
Mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton — winner of both the Main and Song prizes at the 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, a winner of the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and a Grammy nominee — makes her BSO debut performing the solos of the fourth and fifth movements. Ms. Barton’s recent recital at Wolf Trap Barns earned acclaim from The Washington Post’s Anne Midgette: “Barton is…a timeless singer, because anyone who can produce a strong, effortless, rich, expressive sound with such reliability doesn’t deserve to be limited by labels. …Her voice is operatic: big and dramatic, with a huge chest register she’s not afraid to open up and wallow in, and top notes that sound fresh and clear.”
Marin Alsop, conductor
Marin Alsop is an inspiring and powerful voice in the international music scene, a music director of vision and distinction who passionately believes that “music has the power to change lives.” She is recognized across the world for her innovative approach to programming and for her deep commitment to education and to the development of audiences of all ages.
Marin Alsop made history with her appointment as the 12th music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO). With her inaugural concerts in September 2007, she became the first woman to head a major American orchestra. Her success as the BSO’s music director has garnered national and international attention for her innovative programming and artistry. Her success was recognized in 2013, when her tenure was extended to the 2020-2021 season.
Alsop took up the post of principal conductor of the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra in 2012, and became music director in July 2013. There, she steers the orchestra in its artistic and creative programming, recording ventures and its education and outreach activities. She also holds the title of conductor emeritus at the Bournemouth Symphony in the United Kingdom, where she served as the principal conductor from 2002-2008.
In the summer of 2013, Maestra Alsop served her 22nd season as music director of the acclaimed Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music in California. In September 2013, she made history as the first female conductor of the BBC’s Last Night of the Proms in London. When Musical America named Maestra Alsop the 2009 Conductor of the Year, they commented, “[Marin Alsop] connects to the public as few conductors today can.”
Jamie Barton, mezzo-soprano
The winner of both the Main and Song prizes at the 2013 BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, a winner of the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and a Grammy nominee, American mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton has been described by The Guardian as “a great artist, no question, with an imperturbable steadiness of tone.”
After a 2013-2014 season that included a triumphant Adalgisa in Norma at the Metropolitan Opera, Ms. Barton returns this season to that role for her debut at the San Francisco Opera. She will be heard at the Lyric Opera of Chicago as Giovanna Seymour in Anna Bolena and at the Houston Grand Opera as Fricka in Die Walküre, and will sing Azucena in Il Trovatore with the Cincinnati Opera. Ms. Barton’s season also includes the world premiere of Jake Heggie’s The Work at Hand with the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Verdi Requiem with the Toronto Symphony.
Baltimore Choral Arts Society
The Baltimore Choral Arts Society, now in its 49th season, is one of Maryland’s premier cultural institutions. The Symphonic Chorus, Full Chorus, Orchestra and Chamber Chorus perform throughout the mid-Atlantic region, as well as in Washington, D.C., New York and Europe.
For the past 18 years, WMAR Television has featured Choral Arts in an hour-long special, Christmas with Choral Arts, which won an Emmy Award in 2006. Music Director Tom Hall and the chorus were also featured in a PBS documentary called Jews and Christians: A Journey of Faith, broadcast nationwide and on National Public Radio in 2001. On local radio, Mr. Hall is the host of “Choral Arts Classics,” a monthly program on WYPR that features the Choral Arts Chorus and Orchestra, and he is the Culture Editor on WYPR’s “Maryland Morning with Sheilah Kast.”
Choral Arts has appeared with the National Symphony, and has made regular appearances with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Acclaimed artists collaborating with Choral Arts have included Chanticleer, Dave Brubeck, the King’s Singers, Peter Schickele, Sweet Honey in the Rock and Anonymous 4.
Peabody Children’s Chorus
The Peabody Children’s Chorus, founded in 1989, is dedicated to providing age-appropriate vocal training for young people. The Chorus brings children together to rehearse and perform art and folk music of multiple cultures, languages, historical periods, and styles. In six ensembles rehearsing in Towson or Columbia, MD, young people gain invaluable experience making music in ensemble settings, and studying ear-training and music-reading.
Four hundred children between the ages of six and 18 participate each year in three levels of training, rehearsing high quality treble music of advancing challenge and sophistication, and performing in public concert at least twice a year.
COMPLETE PROGRAM DETAILS
Mahler’s Third Symphony
Thursday, January 29, 2015 at 8 p.m. – Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall (JMSH)
Friday, January 30, 2015 at 8 p.m. – JMSH
Saturday, January 31, 2015 at 8 p.m. – The Music Center at Strathmore
Marin Alsop, conductor
Jamie Barton, mezzo-soprano
Baltimore Choral Arts Society, women’s chorus
Peabody Children’s Chorus
Mahler: Symphony No. 3
Tickets start at $29 and are available through the BSO Ticket Office, 410.783.8000 or BSOmusic.org.
The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is funded by an operating grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive.
The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is supported in part by funding from the Montgomery County government and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County.
The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra is also supported by the Citizens of Baltimore County and Baltimore City.