Mahler’s Resurrection Symphony

“Rise again, yes, rise again!” Originally scheduled to close the MSO 2020.21 season before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, Mahler’s immense “Resurrection Symphony” now poignantly brings an end to our current Classics series with Music Director Ken-David Masur at the helm, along with the powerful Milwaukee Symphony Chorus and vocal soloists. This masterwork begins with an … Continued

Mendelssohn’s Elijah

Presenting episodes from the story of the biblical prophet Elijah, Mendelssohn’s oratorio for chorus and four soloists is an operatic experience combining the power of the orchestra and Milwaukee Symphony Chorus for an unforgettable performance. Grammy Award®-winning bass-baritone Dashon Burton is the titular voice of Elijah for this rapturous event. Sung in German.

Don Juan & Beethoven Piano

Roderick Cox, “a trailblazer… a conductor who will be in the vanguard” (Minnesota Star Tribune), leads this showcase of frenzied seduction, serene lyricism, and compelling majesty. Following Strauss’s titillating tone poem, Israeli pianist Inon Barnatan performs Beethoven’s intimate Piano Concerto No. 4. The orchestra concludes with Sibelius’s Symphony No. 5, commissioned in honor of his … Continued

Joyce Yang Plays Mozart

Pianist Joyce Yang is a returning favorite of MSO musicians and audiences alike for her effortless approach to the instrument – performing Mozart’s largest orchestrated piano concerto, No. 24. The Polish folkloric style of Lutoslawski’s Concerto for Orchestra draws together regional melodies with transformative harmonies and textures. The concert opens with Dvořák’s In Nature’s Realm, … Continued

The Zodiac & The Planets

Jazz composer Mary Lou Williams originally wrote her Zodiac Suite with each section inspired by a musical associate born under a different zodiac sign. MSO Artistic Partner Aaron Diehl premieres the complete version for full orchestra, after having presented four of the sections with the New York Philharmonic in 2021. In the second half, the … Continued

Jupiter & Serenade

Brahms’s warm and enlivening Serenade No. 2 pairs well with Strauss’s Horn Concerto No. 1, a demanding but melodic piece with beautiful horn calls, featuring the MSO’s Principal Horn Matthew Annin. Music Director Laureate Edo de Waart conducts this program, concluding with Mozart’s lofty and exuberant Symphony No. 41, fittingly nicknamed “Jupiter” for its grand … Continued

Neptune & Water Music

The MSO’s Water Festival continues with Rameau’s Suite from Naïs, his French Baroque opera depicting the sea god Neptune’s love story with the eponymous water nymph. We then transition to Italian Baroque as the MSO’s own Ilana Setapen and Jennifer Bouton Schaub each perform an elegant Vivaldi concerto. Handel’s jubilant Water Music, originally written for … Continued

Toward the Sea

The MSO’s Water Festival concludes with waves of beautiful sound showcased by MSO principal musicians. Takemitsu’s homage to the sea features alto flute, harp, and strings to evoke the “spiritual domain” of water and nature, while Ludwig’s concerto for bassoon captures the poetic fluidity of water as it relates to life. Debussy’s iconic La mer, … Continued

Music of Clyne, Tchaikovsky & Shostakovich

American cellist Zlatomir Fung is a young star poised to join the next generation of world-class musicians. His performance pairs perfectly with cellist-turned-conductor Han-Na Chang as they both make their MSO debuts to present Tchaikovsky’s sublime work honoring 18th-century Rococo styling for cello. Anna Clyne’s opening piece draws listeners into a beguiling journey of sound, … Continued

Rachmaninoff Piano & Lively Dances

British pianist Stephen Hough brings “the most perfect piano playing conceivable” (The Guardian) to Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, a towering masterpiece of tempestuous melodies and harmonic tensions. Bartók’s Dance Suite transitions the program to harmony and unification in his celebratory work of Hungarian folk-style melodies, commemorating the merging of Buda and Pest into the … Continued