PPO takes the switch for its 39th concert season

The Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra (PPO), the country's premier orchestra, returns to the concert hall for live performances on its 39th season, led by its new music director and principal conductor, Maestro Grzegorz Nowak.

A much-sought-after conductor with a long career in opera and concerts, Maestro Nowak first performed with the PPO for their second concert in the previous season at the CCP Main Theater.

Maestro Grzegorz Nowak

Maestro Nowak was a highly-esteemed principal associate conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London. He was the music director of the Polish National Opera in Warsaw, Poland, from 2017 to 2020, and other orchestras in Poland, Germany, Switzerland, and the USA.

Nowak's career propelled to international level after he won various prestigious awards and prizes. He has performed alongside many of the most widely respected soloists of our time, including Martha Argerich, Yefim Bronfman, Nigel Kennedy, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Mstislav Rostropovich, Gil Shaham and Krystian Zimerman, and has worked with such singers as Janet Baker, Kathleen Battle, Marilyn Horne, Gwyneth Jones, Sherrill Milnes and Anja Silja.

With the theme “Switch,” the concert season sets the stage for Maestro Nowak to lead the country's premiere orchestra to new heights which started with Concert 1 – “Roman Carnival” last September 15. Featuring guest performer, pianist Mark Bebbington, the PPO performed Hector Berlioz' Roman Carnival, Edvard Grieg's Piano Concerto, op. 16, A minor, and Ottorino Respighi's Pini di Roma.

Philippine Phiharmonic Orchestra PHOTO COURTESY OF CCP/RODEL VALIENTE

On October 13, 7:30 p.m., have some “Italian Night” in Concert 2 with program featuring a commissioned Filipino work, Antonin Dvorak's Cello Concerto, and PPO playing Felix Mendelssohn's Symphony no. 4, op.90, A major (“Italian”). PPO will be performing with guest performer cellist Wen-Sinn Yang.

Maestro Nowak and the PPO pay homage to “Russian Masters” in Concert 3 on November 17, 7:30 p.m. Program will be: Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin: Polonaise, Sergei Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto no. 2, op.18, C minor, and Serge Prokofiev's Romeo & Juliet (selections). Pianist Nikolay Khozyainov is the guest performer.

Usher in the holiday spirit with Concert 4- “Ode to Joy” on December 8, 7:30 p.m., with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's Piano Concerto no. 21, K 467, C major and Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony no. 9, op.125, D minor. Filipino pianist and former CCP president Raul Sunico will perform with the PPO.

Welcome the new year with Concert 5 – “Fate” on January 12, 7:30 p.m., with PPO performing another commissioned Filipino work, Johannes Brahms's Piano Concerto no. 1, op. 15, D minor and Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky's Symphony no. 4, op.36, F minor. Pianist Jerome Rose will be the soloist.

Celebrity pianist Krystian Zimerman takes the center stage in Concert 6 – “Piano Rapture” on February 9, 2024, 7:30 p.m. Maestro Nowak conducts Stanislaw Moniuszko's The Fairy Tale Overture, Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Concerto no. 4, op.58, G major, and Rachmaninoff's Symphony no. 2 op. 27. Zimerman will also hold two special performances on February 14 and 16, performing and conducting a chamber ensemble.

Experience the magic of opera in Concert 7 – “Don Pasquale” on March 8, 2024, 7:30 p.m., with Gaetano Donizetti's Don Pasquale, a semi-staged opera performance, to be conducted by Maestro Nowak.

The PPO's 39th concert season culminates with Concert 8 – “Fete Francaise” on April 19, 2024, 7:30 p.m., featuring a commissioned Filipino work, Camille Saint-Saens' Introduction & Rondo capriccioso, op. 28 and Maurice Ravel's Daphnis & Chloe, Suites 1 & 2. Violinist Diomedes Saraza will be the guest performer.

All concerts will be held at the Samsung Performing Arts Theater.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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