The IPO’s 84th Season: Maestro Mehta retires as Music Director after 50 years
The end of the current season and the beginning of next season will mark Maestro Zubin Mehta’s retirement from the music directorship of the IPO. The 2019-20 Season will be unique – Zubin Mehta, the world-celebrated conductor, who headed the IPO for fifty years and led it to great accomplishments, is retiring. Many of us do not remember the orchestra without Zubin Mehta. For us, the IPO is Mehta – Mehta is the IPO. The artistic heights that the IPO reached under Mehta’s leadership are a sound basis for its continued achievements and accomplishments.
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A moving opening – Jubilee Celebrations
The opening concerts of the 84th season will be Maestro Mehta’s last concerts as Music Director. As homage to him, many celebrated artists, friends of the Maestro and the IPO, will appear with him throughout October: Pianists Evgeny Kissin (performing Liszt’s Concerto no. 2 as well as a special concert), Yefim Bronfman (playing Brahms’ Concerto no. 2), Rudolph Buchbinder (Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto) and Denis Matsuev (Rachmaninov’s Concerto no. 3). The celebrations will also feature Pinchas Zukerman, Gil Shaham, Leonidas Kavakos and Mischa Maisky. The last concert of these celebratory events will feature Maestro Mehta’s good friend Itzhak Perlman, as well as singers Chen Reiss and Okka von der Damerau in Mahler’s Symphony no. 2. Maestro Mehta requested that these concerts be part of the subscription series. unfortunately, they will take place in Tel Aviv only, since the halls in Jerusalem and Haifa are unavailable during the Maestro’s visit here.
Lahav Shani, IPO Music Director Designate
Maestro Lahav Shani will come here twice during the season. The first time is in December, when he will be joined by pianist Martha Argerich, who will perform concertos by Ravel and Beethoven. In July Shani will return to conclude the season, conducting Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra and a program of works by Tchaikovsky – Symphony no. 4 and the Violin Concerto with Julian Rachlin.
In October 2020 (the 85th Season), Lahav Shani will begin his position as Music Director of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.
IPO Artist in Residence, Sir Andras Schiff, celebrating Beethoven’s 250th birthday
Together with all the music world, we will also mark the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s birth, both in concerts with Andras Schiff as conductor and pianist and in additional works of the great composer performed throughout the season. Sir Andras Schiff will serve as the first IPO Artist in Residence in the forthcoming season. He will conduct and perform Concertos 1, 2, 3 and 4, as well as Symphony no. 8, overtures and the “Triple” Concerto with violinist Renaud Capuçon and cellist Edgar Moreau. In addition, Schiff will introduce his protégée, violinist Stephen Waarts, who will perform Beethoven’s Violin Concerto. As part of the celebrations, Schiff will also give a special recital of the composer’s select sonatas.
Guest conductors and soloists
Kirill Petrenko, Music Director of the Berlin Philharmonic, will return to us, conducting Brahms’ Symphony no. 3 and Strauss’ Till Eulenspiegel.
In November, Yoel Levi will conduct Britten’s War Requiem and in January 2020, Murray Perahia will return to us, conducting Schubert’s “Unfinished” Symphony and performing Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto.
Gianandrea Noseda, who is concluding his tenure as Principal Guest Conductor of the IPO this season, will continue to appear with us as guest conductor. He will conduct Verdi’s Otello, Schumann’s Symphony no. 4 and Brahms’ Piano Concerto no. 1 with Emanuel Ax.
As part of his 70th birthday celebrations, Pinchas Zukerman commissioned a work from Israeli composer Avner Dorman – Concerto for Violin and Cello – which he will perform with his wife, the cellist Amanda Forsyth. Zukerman will also conduct Elgar’s Enigma Variations.
Kent Nagano, one of the world’s most celebrated conductors, is leading a project of recordings of all of Gustav Mahler’s symphonies. Nagano will conduct here Mahler’s Third Symphony, as part of this important cultural venture.
Renowned Finnish conductor Osmo Vänskä will return to us next season, performing works by Sibelius and Mendelssohn. He will be joined by percussionist-artist Martin Grubinger and celebrated baritone Thomas Hampson, who will perform Schubert songs.
In February, we will host conductor Andrea Battistoni in two programs: the first features Dvorak’s Symphony no. 8 and Berlioz’s Le Nuit D’été, with mezzo-soprano Sophie Koch, while the second features works by Mussorgsky, including Songs and Dances of Death, with mezzo-soprano Ekaterina Gubanova.
Intermezzo – Cultural Fridays at the IPO
A unique concert series, which takes place on Fridays at 11 am, combining coffee and cake in the foyer, weekend newspapers and a pre-concert lecture. Next season’s lecturers will be Prof. Oded Zehavi, Oren Nahari, Prof. Moshe Zuckermann, Prof. Michael Wolpe and Erela Kenan.
The IPO for Kids
The 2019-20 season will also offer a variety of concerts and activities for children of various ages: the flag series is the IPO for Kids in the Lowy Hall, intended for age six and over, hosting Eli Gornstein, Dror Keren, Emmanuel Hannoun, Ania Bukstein and Yarden Bar-Kochba Halperin. In addition, Zucker Hall will host children’s concerts featuring various chamber ensembles on Saturday mornings, and young children (from age 3) are invited to attend our musical story-telling concerts, with actors and IPO musicians.
Zucker Hall: Chamber Music Series, Musical Lectures and More
The IPO chamber music series will take place in the Zucker Hall, featuring chamber ensembles from the IPO and guest artists from Israel and abroad: Emanuel Ax, Renaud Capuçon, Edgar Moreau, Tamara Stefanovich, Julian Rachlin, Lahav Shani and others. Additional series in Zucker include “Talking Music”, a series of lectures with Prof. Michael Wolpe, as well as “Different Classics” – unique encounters of Israeli artists and ensembles from the IPO.
We are proud and excited to present to you our programs for the forthcoming season and hope to see you at the Charles Bronfman Hall in Tel Aviv, at ICC Jerusalem and at the Haifa Auditorium.