The SLSO launches this new era with Denève leading free concert for thousands in Forest Park with the St. Louis Symphony IN UNISON Chorus, St. Louis Symphony Chorus, and St. Louis Youth Orchestra musicians, September 12, followed by the Music of John Williams, September 13-15
Season-opening program includes the world premiere of Kevin Puts’ Virelai, Jennifer Higdon’s blue cathedral, Debussy’s La Mer, Gershwin’s An American in Paris, and Guillaume Connesson’s The Shining One and Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G with new Artist-in-Residence Jean-Yves Thibaudet, September 21-22
Soloists Joélle Harvey and Kelley O’Connor and the St. Louis Symphony Chorus join Denève and the SLSO in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, “Resurrection,” September 27-28
Denève and the SLSO unveil new audience experience changes and accessibility initiatives, including SLSO Invites – a program to make memorable music experiences accessible for all listeners and education concerts free by 2021.
(September 4, 2019, St. Louis, MO) – Today, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra begins a new era with the start of Stéphane Denève’s tenure as Music Director. Denève begins as the 140-year-old orchestra’s 13th Music Director in a month that sees him lead the SLSO in three weekends of unforgettable concerts including the world premiere of a work by St. Louis native Kevin Puts, a program of music by the legendary film composer John Williams, the opening concert of the Lied Center’s 30th anniversary season in Lincoln, Nebraska, and the popular free concert on Forest Park’s Art Hill. The first month of this new chapter in the SLSO’s history also includes the SLSO Gala Celebration on September 20 and the introduction of several programs designed to make extraordinary music experiences with the SLSO more accessible across the St. Louis region.
Stéphane Denève, 13th Music Director of the SLSO, said:
“It seems like ages since I was first named Music Director of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. Now that the time for me to begin has finally arrived, I am filled with joy and anticipation for my new musical home. St. Louis is a luminous city and its people are warm and friendly. I look forward to making music with my new musical family, the immensely talented musicians of the orchestra, and to sharing extraordinary musical experiences with my neighbors in the St. Louis community. We invite everyone in the community to join us on a musical journey this season, and we hope everyone will take advantage of our new programs that make music more accessible.”
Marie-Hélène Bernard, President and CEO of the SLSO, said:
“Stéphane Denève brings boundless creativity and infectious enthusiasm to the St. Louis community. His passion for music as a common thread to unite people is evident in the way he approaches programming and in the new ideas he brings to the organization. This season will be a landmark one for the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and we are excited to welcome our friends and family from St. Louis, and from around the world, to join us in experiencing the power of music.”
A guest conductor of the SLSO since 2003, Denève was named the next Music Director of the SLSO in June 2017. He served as Music Director Designate during the 2018/2019 season, his engagement season with the orchestra. Denève succeeds David Robertson, who served as Music Director for 13 years, from 2005 to 2018.