October 22, 2021 update on live performances and events at the NAC.

CANADA’S NATIONAL ARTS CENTRE ORCHESTRA PRESENTS U.S. PREMIERE OF SYMPHONY NO. 13 BY PHILIP GLASS AT CARNEGIE HALL IN APRIL 2022

Glass Symphony Commissioned by NACO on the theme Truth in Our Time as a Tribute to Canadian Journalist and ABC News Anchor Peter Jennings.

NOVEMBER 18, 2021 – OTTAWA, CANADA – Canada’s National Arts Centre (NAC) has announced that its Orchestra, conducted by Music Director Alexander Shelley, will perform in Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage on 05 April 2022. The concert will feature the U.S. premiere of a new work by Philip Glass, his Symphony No. 13, which was commissioned by the Orchestra on the theme Truth in Our Time as a tribute to Canadian journalist Peter Jennings. Mr. Jennings was not only a highly respected news anchor for ABC News, he was also a trustee of Carnegie Hall during his years in New York City, the founding director of the American chapter of the Friends of the NAC Orchestra, and served as a lifelong champion of Canadian artists generally.

Arna Einarsdottir, Managing Director of the NAC Orchestra, adds important details about the Orchestra’s performance at Carnegie Hall: “The NAC Orchestra, since its very beginnings in 1969, has taken pride in bringing important topics that start dialogue wherever it tours. We felt that Truth in Our Time is a concept of special relevance not only to Canadian and American audiences, but as a universal concept for this moment. We hope to complement our concert appearance with learning and community engagement activities and are in the planning stages now.”

Music Director Alexander Shelley says “We are delighted that our soloist will be Canadian violinist and Gramophone 2021 Artist of the Year James Ehnes, with whom the NAC Orchestra has enjoyed an immensely rewarding, even symbiotic relationship for many years, and who will be playing Erich Korngold’s Violin Concerto on our program. We chose the Korngold concerto because it speaks to the theme Truth in Our Time, as do all the compositions we will be playing at Carnegie Hall. We will open with Canadian composer Nicole Lizée’s Zeiss After Dark, followed by Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 9, and of course the U.S. premiere of Philip Glass’s Symphony No. 13. We hope to share with our friends in New York City a compelling, engaging and memorable concert that reflects on global challenges such as truth and freedom of speech.”

TRUTH IN OUR TIME: A MUSICAL EXPLORATION TO SPARK DIALOGUE

As noted by Maestro Shelley, the NAC Orchestra’s Carnegie Hall appearance in April will open with Nicole Lizée’s Zeiss After Dark, which evokes the cinematographic effect of the Zeiss lens, used to film intimate scenes lit only by candles. The piece will lead the audience to the program’s theme through a contemplation of perspectives and filters.

Her piece will be followed by two works that speak to the idea of freedom of speech and the political implications of its disruption. Erich Korngold fled to the United States during World War II, where he stood staunchly against oppression and became an influential composer for Hollywood films. Korngold’s violin concerto is a response to the fall of the Nazi regime and also represented the victorious return of his music to the concert hall.

Shostakovich’s ninth symphony was expected by Stalin to be a grand work celebrating his regime, but instead the composer took a subversive, satirical approach, delivering a spirited work filled with humor rather than heroism, and this disruptive message commended the work to obscurity for the rest of Stalin’s life.
The final piece on the NAC Orchestra’s program was specifically composed by Philip Glass to speak to the notion of Truth in Our Time, and will serve as the culmination to a truly thought-provoking program for musicians and audience alike.

PREMIERES OF PHILIP GLASS’S NEW WORK
 Philip Glass’s Symphony No. 13 will premiere in Toronto, NYC and Ottawa. Its world premiere will be in Toronto at Roy Thomson Hall on 30 March 2022. The Toronto concert will mark the NAC Orchestra’s 20th appearance at Roy Thomson Hall (for this concert, the violin soloist will be Blake Pouliot). After the U.S. premiere of Glass's Symphony No. 13 at Carnegie Hall in New York, the Orchestra will premiere the piece at its home base, the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, on 13 and 14 April 2022.

30 MARCH 2022, 8 PM
 Roy Thomson Hall, Toronto
 NICOLE LIZÉE: Zeiss After Dark
 DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 9
 ERICH KORNGOLD: Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35
 Blake Pouliot, violin
 PHILIP GLASS: Symphony No. 13 (World Premiere)

Tickets to Toronto concert will be on sale soon here.

05 APRIL 2022, 8 PM
 Carnegie Hall, Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage, NYC
 NICOLE LIZÉE: Zeiss After Dark
 DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 9
 ERICH KORNGOLD: Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35
 James Ehnes, violin
 PHILIP GLASS: Symphony No. 13 (U.S. Premiere)

Tickets to Carnegie Hall concert will be on sale soon here.

13 and 14 APRIL 2022, 8 PM
 Southam Hall, National Arts Centre, Ottawa
 NICOLE LIZÉE: Zeiss After Dark
 DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH: Symphony No. 9
 ERICH KORNGOLD: Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35
 James Ehnes, violin
 PHILIP GLASS: Symphony No. 13 (National Arts Centre Premiere)
Tickets to Ottawa concert will be on sale soon here.
 

SUPPORT FOR THE NAC ORCHESTRA

The Philip Glass commission is made possible thanks to The Jennings Family. The NAC Orchestra’s April 2022 concerts at Carnegie Hall and Roy Thomson Hall are made possible with leadership support from The Janice & Earle O’Born Fund for Artistic Excellence, Adrian Burns, LL.D. and Gregory Kane, Q.C., R.N.C. Tennant, Elinor Gill Ratcliffe, C.M., O.N.L., LLD (hc), Susan Glass and Arni Thorsteinson, and Ambassador Bruce Heyman and Vicki Heyman.


ABOUT THE NAC ORCHESTRA AND HALF A CENTURY OF TOURING
The National Arts Centre Orchestra reaches a national and international audience through touring, recordings and extensive educational programs. Since its debut in 1969, the NAC Orchestra has been praised for the passion and clarity of its performances, its visionary educational programs, and its prominent role in nurturing Canadian creativity. The Orchestra, whose Principal Guest Conductor is John Storgårds, performs a full series of subscription concerts at the National Arts Centre each season, featuring such artists as Joshua Bell, James Ehnes, Stewart Goodyear, Angela Hewitt, Jan Lisiecki, Gabriela Montero, and Xian Zhang. National and international tours have been a hallmark of the National Arts Centre Orchestra from the very beginning. The Orchestra has toured 95 times since its inauguration in 1969, visiting 120 cities in Canada, as well as 20 countries and 138 cities internationally. In recent years, the orchestra has undertaken performance and education tours across Canada as well as the U.K. and China. In 2019, the Orchestra marked its 50th anniversary by showcasing the work of six Canadian composers in a seven-city European tour that included performances and education events in England, France, the Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden. Since its inception, the Orchestra has commissioned more than 80 works, mostly from Canadian composers, and its commissions and recordings won JUNO awards for Best New Composition in 2018 and 2019.
 

ABOUT MUSIC DIRECTOR ALEXANDER SHELLEY
Alexander Shelley began his tenure as Music Director of the NAC Orchestra in 2015, following Pinchas Zukerman’s 16 seasons at the helm. He is Principal Associate Conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and former Chief Conductor of the Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra (2009-2017). Among his many invitations to conduct worldwide are stints with the Rotterdam Philharmonic, DSO Berlin, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Stockholm Philharmonic, the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie and the German National Youth Orchestra.
 

ABOUT CANADA’S NATIONAL ARTS CENTRE
The National Arts Centre is Canada’s bilingual, multi-disciplinary home for the performing arts. As part of its strategic plan, the NAC’s vision is to lead and support the renewal of the performing arts sector. The NAC presents, creates, produces, and co-produces performing arts programming in various streams —the NAC Orchestra, Dance, English Theatre in collaboration with Black Theatre Workshop, French Theatre, Indigenous Theatre, and Popular Music and Variety — and nurtures the next generation of audiences and artists from across Canada. The NAC is located in the National Capital Region on the unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabe.

 

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