“The 2017-18 Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal season will begin with Mahler’s Eighth Symphony, widely conceded to be the biggest choral work in the symphonic repertoire, and end with Beethoven’s Ninth, easily the most famous,” writes Arthur Kaptainis in Wednesday’s (3/22) Montreal Gazette. “The agenda includes another colossal outing with the OSM Chorus, Verdi’s Requiem … A December collaboration with the Montreal Bach Festival, also led by [Music Director Kent] Nagano, will couple the title composer’s Magnificat with Saint-Saëns’s Oratorio de Noël  … Even a three-concert Nordic festival in April 2018 overseen by the Finnish conductor John Storgards has some vocal content from throat singers Evie Mark and Akinisie Sivuarapik (in a work by Alexina Louie), rapper Samian (a new work by Nicole Lizée), soprano Camelia Tilling (Grieg) and baritone Philippe Sly (Rachmaninoff)…. Other symphonic standards are Prokofiev’s Fifth, Tchaikovsky’s Fourth and Sixth, Rachmaninoff’s Second, Shostakovich’s Ninth, Sibelius’s Seventh, and Saint-Saëns’s Third … OSM principal double bass Ali Yazdanfar [will play] a new work by Juilliard School professor Behzad Ranjbaran. … Matthew Ricketts has been commissioned to write Blood Lines, a celebration of the Canadian sesquicentennial with a railway theme. … Alexina Louie, one of Canada’s best-known composers, will supply a new concerto for three violins.”

Posted March 23, 2017

In photo: Montreal Symphony Orchestra Music Director Kent Nagano