News

Lutosławski and Bartók as NACO turns 50

September 30, 2019

This week, Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra celebrates its 50th Birthday with two special concerts in Southam Hall and a series of free lunchtime performances.

The two symphonic programmes were conceived by Alexander Shelley to highlight the breadth of programming and artistic excellence of the orchestra. Each concert begins with a contemporary score – Rasmussen’s Prelude for Brass and the world premiere of Kevin Lau’s Suite from his NAC commissioned ballet ‘Dark Angels’ respectively – and continues with a classical concerto for multiple instruments, featuring the orchestra’s own members as soloists. The concerts then climax with two great masterpieces and orchestral showpieces of the 20th century:Lutoslawski’s and Bartok’s Concertos for Orchestra.

On Monday September 30th, Principal Guest Conductor John Storgårds leads the orchestra in the programme of Rasmussen, Haydn’s Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Cello, Oboe and Bassoon (with concert master Yosuke Kawasaki, cellist Rachel Mercer, oboist Chip Hamann and bassoonist Christopher Millard as soloists), followed by the Lutoslawski, a work that the orchestra has never before performed.

On Thursday October 3rd, Music Director Alexander Shelley leads the premiere of Kevin Lau’s work, Salieri’s Concerto for Flute and Oboe (with Joanna G’froerer and Chip Hamann on the solo parts) and Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra.

On Friday night, a busy week for the orchestra concludes with the NAC’s Golden 50th Gala, featuring every department of the institution (English, French and Indigenous Theatres, Dance and Music), with singer songwriter Sarah McLachlan featured as special guest.