Pittsburgh Symphony To Perform September 21

The Pittsburgh Symphony, under the direction of Maestro Manfred Honeck, and the Mendelsohn Choir of Pittsburgh will perform Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, September 21 at Saint Vincent Basilica. A pre-concert benefit reception will be held at the Fred Rogers Center on the Saint Vincent campus at 5:30 p.m.

Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 in D minor is the last symphony upon which Anton Bruckner worked, leaving the last movement incomplete at the time of his death in 1896; the symphony was premiered under Ferdinand Löwe in Vienna in 1903. Bruckner dedicated it “to the beloved God” (in German, dem lieben Gott). It represents an important link between late romanticism and modernity. With the Ninth, Bruckner not only opens up new soundscapes through the emancipation of dissonance that Wagner had already achieved, but also achieves a new dimension by separating individual chords from once firmly established sound connections the harmony, as it is continued, for example, by Arnold Schoenberg. On the long symphonic tracks Bruckner expands the form extremely, making it a pioneer of modernism.

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, has a rich history of the world’s finest conductors and musicians, and a strong commitment to the Pittsburgh region and its citizens. Past music directors have included Fritz Reiner (1938-1948), William Steinberg (1952-1976), Andre Previn (1976-1984), Lorin Maazel (1984-1996) and Mariss Jansons (1995-2004). This tradition of outstanding international music directors was furthered in fall 2008, when Austrian conductor Manfred Honeck became music director of the Pittsburgh Symphony. The orchestra has been at the forefront of championing new American works, and gave the first performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Symphony No. 1 “Jeremiah” in 1944 and John Adams’ Short Ride in a Fast Machine in 1986. The Pittsburgh Symphony has a long and illustrious history in the areas of recordings and radio concerts. As early as 1936, the Pittsburgh Symphony broadcast on the airwaves coast-to-coast and in the late 1970s it made the ground breaking PBS series “Previn and the Pittsburgh.” The orchestra has received increased national attention since 1982 through network radio broadcasts on Public Radio International, produced by Classical WQED-FM 89.3, made possible by the musicians of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. With a long and distinguished history of touring both domestically and overseas since 1900-including 36 international tours to Europe, the Far East and South America-the Pittsburgh Symphony continues to be critically acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest orchestras.

Critically acclaimed as one of the finest choruses in the country, the 110-year-old Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh (MCP) is re-inventing choral music for the 21st century. MCP singers are every-day community members from diverse backgrounds and professions who give generously of their time and talent to create powerful, unexpected, and deeply moving moments of musical discovery. Now under Music Director Matthew Mehaffey, the MCP has been celebrated for its exciting and innovating programming.

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