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December 10, 2018

PORTLAND, OR – 2019 begins with a delightful Pops program, Favorite Light Classics, conducted by Norman Huynh, on January 5–6. The classical experience continues as cellist Johannes Moser, hailed by the Chicago Classical Review for his “rich, beautifully burnished tone,” opens the first of his three years as the Oregon Symphony’s artist-in-residence, January 12–14, with Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto No. 1. Next, Double bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer returns for a one-night-only performance on January 19 of his Concerto for Double Bass in E, in a concert that also features Copland’s Appalachian Spring and William Grant Still’s Afro-American Symphony. On January 20 the Oregon Symphony is delighted to present award-winning singer Leslie Odom, Jr., who originated the role of Aaron Burr in the smash musical Hamilton. Odom will perform with the orchestra in a special evening of Broadway hits and American standards. January concludes with violinist Viviane Hagner, who premiered Unsuk Chin’s award-winning Violin Concerto in 2002, showcases her “hauntingly masterful display of technique and artistry” (Washington Post) in a concert that also features a pair of symphonies by Beethoven and Schumann on January 26–28.




When and Where: [Editors: please note different start times] Jan. 5 at 7:30 pm, and Jan. 6 at 2 pm at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall.

The Performers: The Oregon Symphony, with Associate Conductor Norman Huynh; *James Shields, clarinet; Chien Tan and Inés Voglar, violins

The Program:

Bernstein: Overture to Candide
Grieg: Selections from Peer Gynt
Pachelbel: Canon in D      
Khachaturian: “Sabre Dance” from Gayane
*Mozart: Adagio from Clarinet Concerto
Rossini: Overture to William Tell
Beethoven: Selections from Symphony No. 5
Barber: Adagio for Strings
J. S. Bach: Double Violin Concerto in D Minor
Rachmaninoff: Selections from Symphonic Dances

What’s So Special About This Concert:

  • What better way to begin the new year than with a concert of beloved favorites? With music from Bach to Barber, Bernstein to Beethoven, everyone will find music they recognize – and love – in these performances.
  • Oregon Symphony’s world-class musicians are prominently featured in this program. Principal Clarinet James Shields takes center stage for the lyrical Adagio from Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto. Principal Second Violin Chien Tan and Assistant Principal Second Violin Inés Voglar team up for the last two movements of J. S. Bach’s Double Violin Concerto.
  • Thanks to many appearances in popular culture, from the classic TV show “The Lone Ranger,” Bugs Bunny cartoons, and numerous commercials, Rossini’s William Tell Overture is among the most recognized pieces of classical repertoire.
  • Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings has become associated with expressions of public or national mourning. It was broadcast on the radio following the announcement of FDR’s death in 1945; on TV after JFK’s assassination in 1963; and performed at London’s Royal Albert Hall following the attacks of September 11, 2001.
  • Even those less familiar with classical music will immediately recognize the first four notes of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. Since its 1808 premiere, this iconic work has become a lens through which we view music, society, and culture.

More Background Info and Photos:

On the Oregon Symphony: orsymphony.org




When and Where: Jan. 12, Jan. 13, and Jan. 14 at 7:30 pm at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall.

The Performers: The Oregon Symphony, with Music Director Carlos Kalmar; *Johannes Moser, cello

The Program:

Rossini: Overture to Tancredi 
ZimmermannMusic for the Suppers of King Ubu
*Shostakovich: Cello Concerto No. 1
Rimsky-Korsakov: Russian Easter Festival Overture

What’s So Special About This Concert:

  • Hailed by Gramophone Magazine as “one of the finest among the astonishing gallery of young virtuoso cellists,” German-Canadian Johannes Moser has performed with the world’s leading orchestras, including the Berliner Philharmoniker, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, BBC Philharmonic at the Proms, and the London Symphony, among others.
  • “The searing Shostakovich First Cello Concerto of 1959 showed just how brilliant the young German/Canadian is, both as a cellist and a musician. What a staggering performance it was.” – John Button, Stuff, October 14, 2018
  • These performances are part of an event-packed week as Moser begins his three-year tenure as the Oregon Symphony’s newest Artist-in-Residence.
  • Moser will also give master classes to members of the Portland Youth Philharmonic and Metropolitan Youth Symphony; rehearse and perform with the students of BRAVO Youth Orchestras; perform at the Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg and the St. Mary’s Home for Boys in Beaverton; chat with host Christa Wessel and play live on All Classical FM; and perform on top of a coffee table inside the lobby of the Ace Hotel.
  • Moser recently won his 3rd ECHO Klassik award as “Instrumentalist of the Year 2017” for his Russian recital disk on the PENTATONE label. 

More Background Info and Photos:

On the Oregon Symphony: orsymphony.org

On Johannes Moser: johannes-moser.com




When and Where: Jan. 19 at 7:30 pm at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. Note: This concert will also be performed in Salem on Friday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 pm. For more information, go to orsymphonysalem.org.

The Performers: The Oregon Symphony with Associate Conductor Norman Huynh; *Edgar Meyer, double bass

The Program:           

Copland: Suite from Appalachian Spring
*Bottesini: Double Bass Concerto No. 2
*Edgar Meyer: Double Bass Concerto No. 3 in E
Still: Afro-American Symphony

What’s So Special About This Concert:

  • In demand as both a performer and a composer, Edgar Meyer has formed a role in the music world unlike any other. Hailed by The New Yorker as “… the most remarkable virtuoso in the relatively un-chronicled history of his instrument,” Mr. Meyer’s unparalleled technique and musicianship, in combination with his uniqueness in the field, earned him numerous honors, including a MacArthur “Genius” Award in 2002.
  • “Mr. Meyer is not only a legitimate heir to this tradition, but also a great energizing factor to the field. His versatility should be celebrated.” – The New York Times
  • In 1994, Meyer received the Avery Fisher Career Grant for young artists, and in 2000 became the only bassist to receive the Avery Fisher Prize. 
  • In a review of the 2012 premiere of Meyer’s Third Concerto for Double Bass, Michael Huebner wrote, “With the ink barely dry on the 22-minute work, [the concerto] is a fresh and vibrant impression of Meyer’s considerable stylistic palette, incorporating shades of Appalachian folk music and jazzy pitch bends. One section distinctly referenced an Indian raga, the bass becoming a sitar or sarod, [and] the orchestra providing the tambura drone. Meyer’s compositional strengths lie with orchestral color and rhythmic intensity. An expanded woodwind section includes such underused instruments as the contrabass clarinet, bass flute, and contrabassoon – all, not coincidentally, [having a range] residing in the neighborhood of his own instrument.”
  • “Meyer, before bursting into the public eye with his Grammy-winning Appalachia Waltz collaboration with Yo-Yo Ma and Mark O’Connor, was much in demand as a Nashville session player, and it’s safe to say both his playing and his compositions freely steal from every genre he’s ever encountered.” – South China Morning Post, November 10, 2016

More Background Info and Photos:

On the Oregon Symphony: orsymphony.org

On Edgar Meyer: edgarmeyer.com




When and Where: Jan. 20 at 7:30 pm at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

The Performers: The Oregon Symphony with guest conductor Thomas Douglas; Leslie Odom, Jr., vocals

The Program: Don’t miss this exhilarating evening of jazz standards and Broadway hits from Grammy Award winner Leslie Odom, Jr., who originated the role of Aaron Burr in the Broadway blockbuster Hamilton

What’s So Special About This Concert:

  • During Leslie Odom, Jr.’s sold-out run playing Aaron Burr in Hamilton at The Public Theatre in 2015, he earned a Drama Desk Award nomination for Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical and a Lucille Lortel Award nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical.
  • Odom, Jr. made his Broadway debut at the age of 17 in Rent before attending Carnegie Mellon University’s prestigious School of Drama, where he graduated with honors.
  • Odom released his first solo album in 2016 on the S-Curve label. It features a selection of musical theatre hits and classic jazz standards arranged to showcase Odom’s smooth, stylish voice.
  • “Tony winner Leslie Odom, Jr. thrilled a sold-out house in a short (1 hour 15 mins) but satisfying concert of jazz and Broadway songs. Odom – who played Aaron Burr in the hit Broadway show, Hamilton – had the audience in the palm of his hands from the moment he strode onto the stage in front of his five-piece band, wearing a smart grey suit and a big, infectious smile.” – The Morning Call, Jodi Duckett, November 12, 2017
  • “Odom is a stellar performer. With his band and the orchestra for accompaniment, he presented an electrifying program of musical theater and jazz. In ‘Sarah,’ from The Civil War, the words of a dying soldier rose above a sweeping orchestra; barely a breath could be heard in the house. ‘Without You,’ from Rent, carried nearly 20 years’ depth of poignancy and reflection, from when Odom was cast in the show as a teenager … His respect for Nat ‘King ’ Cole is deep, and when he sings jazz, he has a similar smooth, classy approach. ‘Unforgettable’was flawless, ‘I Know That You Know’ was polished, and ‘Straighten Up and Fly Right’ was witty. Sarah Bareilles’ ‘Winter Song’ and Jerome Kern’s ‘Look for the Silver Lining’ had all the best characteristics of jazz/pop standards, but it was Frank Loesser’s ‘Joey, Joey, Joey’ that took the performance from impressive to sublime. Odom disappeared into vulnerability against a completely silent audience.” – Lynn Green, The Columbus Dispatch, February 10, 2018
  • “Fronting a crack five-piece band, the singer explored a repertoire of pop and jazz standards along with a few tunes from his Broadway days during the 75-minute performance. His seasoned but smooth tenor provided many soulful, swinging and – assisted by a touch of reverb – soaring moments that showed he’s an artist and entertainer who respects musical traditions as well as recent innovations.” – Steve Feeney, PressHerald.com, October 27, 2017

More Background Info and Photos:

On the Oregon Symphony: orsymphony.org

On Leslie Odom, Jr.: leslieodomjr.com




When and Where: [Editors: please note different start times] Jan. 26 at 7:30 pm, Jan. 27 at 2 pm, and Jan. 28 at 7:30 pm at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall.

The Performers: The Oregon Symphony, with guest conductor Markus Stenz; *Viviane Hagner, violin

The Program:

Beethoven: Symphony No. 1
*Unsuk Chin: Violin Concerto
Schumann: Symphony No. 3, “Rhenish”

What’s special about this concert:

  • Violinist Viviane Hagner has won exceptional praise for her intelligent musicality and passionate artistry. She performs with “poise and magnificent assurance” (The Times, London) and “an almost hauntingly masterful display of technique and artistry” (Washington Post), while the Berliner Morgenpost wrote: “Listening to Viviane Hagner play the violin is an enchanting experience … she is both a thoughtful and brilliant violinist. In her playing, she knows how to combine reflection and luminosity in the most striking way.”
  • Since her debut at the age of thirteen in the legendary joint concert of the Israel and Berlin Philharmonics conducted by Zubin Mehta, Viviane Hagner has appeared with many of the world’s leading orchestras.
  • Hagner premiered Unsuk Chin’s concerto in 2002 with the Deutsches Sinfonie-Orchester and Kent Nagano, and also recorded it in 2009 with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, led by Kent Nagano, on the Analekta label. The Berlin Tagesspiegel hailed the Violin Concerto as “ … a giant success with the public … this music gripped and touched us.”
  • Ms. Hagner plays the Sasserno Stradivarius, made in 1717. The instrument is on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation.
  • Markus Stenz has been chief conductor of the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra since 2012 and Principal guest conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra since the 2015/16 season. Since January 2017, he has also been conductor in residence with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra.

More Background Info and Photos:

On the Oregon Symphony: orsymphony.org

On Markus Stenz: markusstenz.com

On Viviane Hagner: vivianehagner.com



Tickets for all concerts can be purchased online at orsymphony.org; or in person at the Oregon Symphony Ticket Office located at 909 SW Washington St., Portland, OR 97205.

Ticket Office Hours

July–August: (Mon–Fri, 10 am–6 pm); by phone at 503-228-1353 (Mon–Fri, 10 am–9 pm).

September–June (Mon–Sat, 10 am–6 pm); by phone at 503-228-1353 (Mon–Fri, 10 am–9 pm, Sat 10 am–6pm); and at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall starting two hours before every performance.

Season subscriptions, including the popular Choose Your Own packages and Gift Cards, are available through the Symphony Ticket Office at 503-228-1353.



The multi-Grammy-nominated Oregon Symphony ranks as one of America’s major orchestras. Led by Music Director Carlos Kalmar, it serves over 300,000 people annually through more than 110 performances and award-winning education and community engagement programs. Now in its 123rd year, the Oregon Symphony is the oldest orchestra west of the Mississippi.

The Symphony’s ground-breaking 2017/18 Season set box office and fundraising records and was marked by an initiative to connect more deeply with the Portland community. The organization embarked on the year-long Sounds of Home series, which revolutionized the role of the arts in addressing three of the most critical social issues of the day: immigration, the environment, and homelessness. This series made a powerful impact in the community through innovative art, cross-sector partnerships with 37 organizations, and civic leadership. Sounds of Home community concerts hosted in venues across the city reached nearly 3,000 attendees and were viewed by thousands more through live streaming on social media.

The Symphony reached over 15 million radio broadcast listeners in the 2017/18 Season via All Classical Portland as well as American Public Media’s SymphonyCast and Performance Today. The season additionally featured three world premieres, including the first-ever play commissioned by an American orchestra.

Photos for media use are available at orsymphony.org/newsroom.


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