Composer Xi Wang.

“Music is often concerned with telling stories, but narrative isn’t always the explicit subject matter,” writes Joshua Kosman in Wednesday’s (5/31) San Francisco Chronicle. “The Berkeley Symphony will conclude its season under Music Director Joseph Young with a program of works dedicated to the topic. Carlos Simon’s 2017 work ‘Portrait of a Queen’ calls on a female narrator—in this case actor Leontyne Mbele-Mbong—to trace the evolution of Black life in America through one woman’s consciousness. ‘Lotus Prayer,’ a commissioned world premiere by Chinese-born composer Xi Wang, promises a different kind of musical portraiture. Finally, Rimsky-Korsakov’s opulently scored ‘Scheherazade’ celebrates one of culture’s most noteworthy female storytellers, wordlessly spinning out tales of adventure and romance.” “Lotus Prayer” was commissioned by the League of American Orchestras as part of the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation Orchestral Commissions Program.