The world's most acclaimed classical-music artists provide star power on the Symphony Center Presents series of chamber music and piano recitals, from Emanuel Ax to Yuja Wang
Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Jan. 22: Performing without a conductor, the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra relies on collaborative leadership. With alto saxophonist Branford Marsalis as soloist, the group offers an eclectic program of French, Italian and Spanish selections: Rossini’s Overture to The Barber of Seville, the Suite from Soleriana by Rodrigo, Turina’s La oración del torero and a jazz suite of themes from Bizet’s Carmen by Courtney Bryan. Acclaimed in both jazz and classical music, Marsalis is the soloist in Debussy’s Rhapsody and Ibert’s Concertino da camera.
Ax, Ma and Kavakos, March 11: Spectacular stars of the highest magnitude — pianist Emanuel Ax, violinist Leonidas Kavakos and cellist Yo-Yo Ma — perform four piano trios of Beethoven: the E-flat Major, Op. 1, No. 1; the G Major, Op. 1, No. 2; the B-flat Major, Op. 11, and the D Major, Op. 70, No. 1 (Ghost).
Mitsuko Uchida and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, March 20: Pianist Mitsuko Uchida is soloist and leads the Mahler Chamber Orchestra in two piano concertos by Mozart: No. 23 in A Major, K. 488, and No. 24 in C Minor, K. 491. Two pieces by Anton Webern, Variations for Piano, Op. 27, and Five Movements, Op. 5, complete the program.
Hilary Hahn with Seth Parker Woods and Andreas Haeflinger, April 1: Violinist Hilary Hahn, the CSO’s Artist-in-Residence through 2023, returns for her spring residency to perform with cellist Seth Parker Woods and pianist Andreas Haefliger in Carlos Simon’s meditative be still and know for violin, cello and piano; Kodály's Duo for Violin and Cello, Op. 7, and Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 10 in G Major, Op. 96.
Igor Levit, Jan. 16: During the pandemic, German pianist Igor Levit became known for his live-streamed, at-home concerts. For his Chicago recital, he plays arrangements of Six Chorale Preludes by Brahms and the Prelude from Tristan and Isolde by Wagner, as well as Liszt's Sonata in B Minor and a new work by American composer Fred Hersch.
Jan Lisiecki, Jan. 30: Polish-Canadian virtuoso Jan Lisiecki, hailed by BBC Music magazine "as the most complete pianist of his age," gives an all-Chopin recital of Etudes, Op. 10, and selected Nocturnes.
Richard Goode, Feb. 20: American pianist Richard returns to Symphony Center for a program of Schumann's Papillons, Schubert's Sonata in A Minor, D. 845, Bartók's Hungarian Peasant Songs and Beethoven's Sonata in A Major, Op. 101.
George Li, March 13: The Tchaikovsky Competition’s 2015 Silver Medalist, George Li brings an ambitious recital of Schumann’s Arabeske in C Major, Op. 18, and Fantasy in C Major, Op. 17; Chopin’s Twenty-Four Preludes, Op. 28, and Instants d’un opéra de Pékin by Qigang Chen.
Sir András Schiff, March 29, 7:30 p.m.: Distinguished pianist Sir András Schiff makes an anticipated return to the SCP Piano series with an all-Mozart program, details to be announced later. (Changed from the original date of April 3.)
Yuja Wang, April 10: Critically acclaimed pianist Yuja Wang returns to Chicago for a recital program to include works by Bach, Beethoven and Schoenberg.
Yefim Bronfman, May 8: A regular visitor to Symphony Center, Yefim Bronfrman performs a program of Bartók's Suite for Piano, Op. 14, and Piano Sonata, Sz. 80, as well as Beethoven’s Sonata No. 11 in B-flat Major, Op. 22, and Chopin’s Sonata No. 3 in B Minor, Op. 58.
Evgeny Kissin, May 15: Captivating audiences at each of his Symphony Center performances, Russian native Evgeny Kissin offers a program of the Bach/Tausig Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, Mozart’s Adagio in B Minor, K. 540, a selection of Chopin's Mazurkas and that composer’s Andante spianato and Grande polonaise brillante, Op. 22.
Denis Kozhukhin, June 12: The series finale features Russian virtuoso Denis Kozhukhin in a varied program of favorites such as Schumann’s Kinderszenen, Ravel’s La valse and Sonatine, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and selections from Grieg’s Lyric Pieces, Op. 12.