Street closures around the NAC during Winterlude 2019
James Ehnes © Benjamin Ealovega
Music Classical music Violin
“Whether Ehnes was attacking a fearsome passage of double-stop chords with his signature elegance or deftly sprinkling a torrent of precisely placed pizzicati, it was like watching a veteran climber scaling a particularly brutal mountain face sans ropes." Memeteria
  • Bramwell Tovey Violin Concerto
  • Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 3, "Polish"

World Premiere

Audiences are in for a rousing evening with Bramwell Tovey, conductor and prolific composer with a body of work spanning more than forty years.  The charismatic Tovey, known for his easy connections with audiences and musicians alike, will conduct Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 3 and his own new Violin Concerto, written especially for Canadian superstar and NAC favourite, James Ehnes. 

Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky wrote his 3rd Symphony in the summer 1875 while vacationing in the country, just before composing his brilliant ballet Swan Lake. Light and uncomplicated, with an overall tone of exuberant optimism, this symphony marks a dividing line in the composer’s personal life. Though he battled depression and suffered many personal losses throughout his life, in the period between his 3rd and 4th symphonies Tchaikovsky experienced increased nervous and psychological strain, with the demise of his marriage and his conflicted feelings about his own sexuality. Tchaikovsky viewed his 3rd symphony as a “step forward” in terms of craftsmanship. It is a feast for the ears, awash with emotion and brilliant orchestration.

Known for his piercing clarity, and warm, expressive tone, James Ehnes is a preeminent violinist of his generation and Winner of nine JUNOs and a GRAMMY award.  Audiences are in for a rare treat when he performs this new work for violin and orchestra, written especially for him by Bramwell Tovey.  Ehnes and Tovey have fostered a mutual admiration through previous collaborations and this performance marks a moment highly anticipated by both musicians. Be a part of what promises to become a storied moment in modern music history.

"[Ehnes'] artistry is always put at the service of the composer and his music... the performances are first class." Classical FM

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
Mar 18
Mar 19
Mar 20
  • 8:00 PM
Mar 21
  • 8:00 PM
Mar 22
Mar 23
Mar 24


Performance is approximately 2 hours including intermission.

James Ehnes © Benjamin Ealovega
James Ehnes and the NAC Orchestra © Fred Cattroll
Bramwell Tovey © David Cooper
Bramwell Tovey © David Cooper