It is with great regret that the upcoming concerts in Christchurch and Dunedin have been cancelled in response to the measures in place to tackle the COVID-19 Coronavirus. Alexander Shelley and the New Zealand Symphony had been greatly looking forward to presenting these programmes of music by Poulenc and Beethoven with soloist Cameron Carpenter and hope to reschedule for a future season.
Having opened the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s Masters Series season last week with world premiere performances of Gordon Hamilton’s Antarctic-inspired ‘Far South’ and Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben, Alexander this week led performances with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra at the Town Hall.
This week sees the start of an extensive three-week tour of Australia and New Zealand in which Alexander returns to the Melbourne, Sydney and New Zealand Symphony Orchestras with three exciting programmes of symphonic masterpieces.
This week, Alexander’s ‘Composer360°’ series with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra continues at Cadogan Hall with ‘Wagner360°’. In this latest instalment music by Hans von Bülow, Liszt, Brahms and Wagner will be performed as the series explores the life and times of the creator of the legendary Ring cycle. As always, Alexander conducts and presents the concert, offering insight into the stories behind the music.
Returning to Canada after the Christmas break, Alexander and the National Arts Centre Orchestra continued their exploration of the Brahms and Schumann Symphonies, glued together by the music of Clara Schumann. For the opening concerts of the year they were joined by regular collaborator Gabriela Montero, who received glowing reviews for her interpretation of Clara Schumann’s Piano Concerto, written when the composer was only 15 years old.
Also on the programme: Emilie Mayer’s Faust Overture, a concert hall rarity, and Schumann’s 3rd Symphony.
Reviewing the first performance, classical music journal Ludwig van Toronto described it as ‘an auspicious TSO debut’ for Shelley ‘…leading the orchestra in a very crisp reading of the score. He’s a fine conductor, and let’s hope he’ll be back.’ Read full review here.