Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich 2020-2021

Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich Season Preview

The Swiss Government have not yet announced how concerts may resume in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, so the management of the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich have had to be creative and flexible with their planning of next season.

The orchestra hopes that concerts will be able to resume as ‘normal’ from January 2021 onwards. Sadly, the virus has led to a further postponement of the opening of their renovated concert hall (the Tonhalle) until August 2021. Concerts next season will therefore continue at the Tonhalle Maag.

Moving forward with relish: Flexibility is the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich’s watchword for the forthcoming season. Until December, programmes will be tailored to the prevailing situation. Short concerts at uniform prices will be announced on a monthly basis.

Highlights of the season will include Arvo Pärt as Creative Chair and the Labèque sisters and Olli Mustonen as Focus artists.

The season with a Swiss première – a new version of Pärt’s work La Sindone. Paavo Järvi will open with Beethoven’s Symphony No.7. The Finnish pianist, conductor and composer Olli Mustonen will present his vision of the piano arrangement of Beethoven’s Violin Concerto Op. 61, making his début as one of the orchestra’s selected Focus artists.

Distinguished artists will be performing in Zurich throughout the season – Conductor Laureate David Zinman (Beethoven Fifth Symphony 14th/15th April 2021), Ksenija Sidorova, Lisa Bathiashvili, Lionel Bringuier (Rachmaninov’s Second Symphony 22nd/23rd April 2021), the indefatigable Herbert Blomstedt (Stenhammar Second Symphony 16th to 18th June 2021), Jakub Hrůša (Suk, Asrael Symphony 29th/30th April 2021), Omer Meir Wellber (Prokofiev Alexander Nevsky 8th/9th May 2021), Leonidas Kavakos, Steven Isserlis (Elgar Cello Concerto), Semyon Bychkov (Rite of Spring: 23rd to 25th June 2021) and Yefim Bronfman, to mention just a few. Furthermore, Michael Tilson Thomas (Mahler’s First Symphony on 9th/10th/11th June 2021) and Matias-Santtuu Rouvali (Prokofiev Fifth Symphony on 7th January 2021) will give their débuts.

British saxophonist Jess Gillam should attract a young audience for her concert on 11th January 2021.

Choral works include Britten’s War Requiem with Ian Bostridge, Kent Nagano conducts, 30th/31st January 2021) and the Gemischter Chor Zurich will sing Brahms German Requiem with the Tonhalle Orchestra on 1st/2nd April, together with Mendelssohn’s version of the 42nd Psalm ‘Wie der Hirsch schreit’.

The first of the Tonhalle-Orchester’s Tchaikovsky CD recordings with Järvi – of the Fifth Symphony, together with the Francesca da Rimini overture – will be released in September. The next recording project will be of Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy’s complete symphonies.

During the orchestra’s European tour in November, the orchestra will be giving two guest performances at Vienna’s Musikverein, among other venues (Hanover, Paris, Luxembourg, Lugano and Moscow). The highlight of the tour will be the ensemble’s stint as Orchestra in Residence at Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie in March 2021. The Tonhalle Orchestra will be taking three programmes from Zurich to Hamburg, combining works by Pärt, Schumann and Tchaikovsky with three soloists – Kian Soltani, Fazil Say and Frank Peter Zimmermann.

For further details, visit the orchestra’s website click here.

John Rhodes

Leave a Comment