This vibrant program pairs two pieces by Ravel: the haunting "Pavane pour une infante défunte" and the Piano Concerto in G Major (with Andrew Le, piano), with Kodaly’s Variations on a Hungarian Folksong, a tour-de-force for the entire orchestra. A work by young Venezuelan composer Reinaldo Moya rounds out the program.
Mendelssohn’s "Italian" Symphony is one of the best-known and most-performed symphonies in the orchestral literature. Sunny and endlessly tuneful, it was inspired by the composer’s travels throughout Italy in the 1830’s. Joseph Lin, former First Violin in the renowned Julliard String Quartet, joins the orchestra for Bartok’s folk-inflected Second Violin Concerto, a work of intense virtuosity, colorful orchestral flourishes and impish humor.
The Symphony closes its 2018-19 season with two towering works: Respighi’s glittering orchestral tone poem, Pines of Rome, which travels from the depths of the catacombs to glorious villa gardens, and Schumann’s Piano Concerto (with soloist Jonathan Yates), which served as an inspiration for the piano concertos of Grieg and Rachmaninoff. The otherworldly Prelude to Wagner’s last completed opera, Parsifal, and a work by UVA Emeritus Professor Judith Shatin complete the program.