“The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra announced its 97th season on Friday afternoon in Newark, presenting its classical concert series under the banner ‘Front & Center,’ ” writes James C. Taylor in Thursday’s (1/31) Star-Ledger (N.J.). “Music Director Xian Zhang and President and CEO Gabriel van Aalst laid out their 16 weekends of classical concerts, once again focusing on diversity as well as a commitment to new works.… Zhang said, ‘The 2019-20 season is about bringing different art forms, as well as the talent of our NJSO musicians, front and center.’ … The season will open in October with … New Jersey-based composer Sarah Kirkland Snider’s … 2015 … ‘Hiraeth’ [featuring] the NJSO alongside the Women of Newark Voices… Three weekends from Jan. 3 to Jan. 19 … will feature the NJSO premieres of Clara Schumann’s Piano Concerto and Wagner’s ‘Ring Without Words,’ a symphonic version of the famous operas arranged by Lorin Maazel…. A weekend-long mini-festival … will [feature] all five [Beethoven] piano concertos with artist-in-residence Louis Lortie [and] Beethoven’s ‘Eroica’ symphony.” Also planned is the U.S. premiere of Qigang Chen’s La joie de la souffrance and the East Coast premiere of Christopher Rouse’s Bassoon Concerto, featuring Principal Bassoon Robert Wagner.

Posted February 1, 2019