“For the first time in its history, the San Diego Symphony will welcome world-renowned Russian conductor Valery Gergiev and his Mariinsky Orchestra,” writes Beth Wood in Thursday’s (10/18) San Diego Union Tribune. On Wednesday, October 24, “they will join forces … on the same stage for the first time in the U.S. [to] perform Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7…. ‘Symphony No.7 embodies the allegiance between the U.S. and Russia against the Nazis in World War II,’ explained San Diego Symphony CEO Martha Gilmer. ‘The piece was written during the siege of Leningrad … Shostakovich … began work on Symphony No. 7 in Leningrad but was evacuated and completed it in another Russian city…. Gilmer pointed to the overwhelming support from U.S. orchestras at the time as a sign of cooperation between America and Russia…. While this special concert was only announced in August, the relationships that helped made it happen were established long ago. Gilmer has known Gergiev for 30 years…. ‘Valery knows the power of the ‘Leningrad.’ Not enough people are aware of this creative statement by Shostakovich…. I want people to eagerly come to a literally one-time performance that night.’ ”

Posted October 22, 2018