New Houston Symphony Music Director Juraj Valčuha launches his first season this weekend with Verdi’s epically-scaled Requiem, setting a new precedent for Houston Symphony opening nights that showcase the organization’s entire orchestral and choral complement onstage at once. Other hallmarks of Valčuha’s programming that we’ll see in the coming season include embracing programmatic themes that unify his multi-week appearances, exploring operatic repertoire in concert alongside great choral works from the symphonic repertoire, continuing to spotlight Houston Symphony musicians as soloists, and welcoming the greatest guest artists in the world to Houston.
Classical season highlights to come this season include Valčuha leading concerts featuring soloists Joshua Bell and Itzhak Perlman, as well as mini-festivals celebrating works that caused Riots and Scandals at their premieres and works with cross cultural ties in Songs of the Earth, a concert tribute to past illustrious Houston Symphony Music Director Sir John Barbirolli, and a concert performance of Stravinsky’s opera Oedipus Rex. Classical season details here.
Bank of America POPS season highlights include vocalist Capathia Jenkins in She’s Got Soul, Disney’s Fantasia with the Symphony performing the score live, and The Best of Broadway with Jeremy Jordan. Bank of America POPS season details here.
The Symphony is also announcing several important additional performances to the 2022–2023 concert schedule, including the PNC Family Series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, and Fiesta Sinfónica.
A full season of four PNC Family Series Concerts opens with two performances on October 8 (10 and 11:30 a.m.) of Celebrating Black Composers: Ellington, Hendrix, Price & More. Guest conductor Daniel Bartholomew-Poyser leads the orchestra in a musical journey paying homage to over a century of trailblazing black artists, from the Chevalier de Saint George’s 18th-century Violin Concerto featuring Houston Symphony Community Embedded Musician Rainel Joubert as soloist, to Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze.”
The PNC Family Series continues December 17, 2022 with two performances of Ho-Ho-Holiday! Polar Express, Frozen & More. The series takes on the theme of space exploration on February 25, 2023 with two performances of Blast Off to Space!, and concludes with two performances on May 6, 2023 of Fairy Tales for Kids! with music from Firebird, Sleeping Beauty and Disney. All PNC Family Series concerts take place in Jones Hall. PNC Family Series details here.
The new season also includes two special concerts. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 is shown on a giant screen while the Houston Symphony performs the score live April 27, 29, and 30, 2023 in Jones Hall. And this November 4, 2022 marks the return of a long-standing Houston Symphony tradition hosted in partnership with the Symphony’s Hispanic Leadership Council, and sponsored by Chevron and Univision. It’s Fiesta Sinfónica, a musical celebration of Latin American music. Pittsburgh Symphony Associate Conductor Andrés Franco conducts works including Ginastera’s Danzas del Ballet Estancia, Piazzolla and Delaney’s Milonga del Angel, and “Maria” from West Side Story featuring guest artist Rafael Moras, tenor. The Chevron Fiesta Sinfónica is free to the public, but requires a ticket reservation at houstonsymphony.org or 713-224-7575.
Tickets for all Houston Symphony performances and season ticket packages are on sale now at houstonsymphony.org.