This November, Gustavo Gimeno finally returns to the stage of the Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto for the first in-person concerts since March 2020. For three nights, he will lead the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in a program featuring the Canadian Premiere of Anthony Barfield’s Invictus as well as Haydn’s Overture to L’isola disabitata, Hindemith’s Concert Music for Strings and Brass and Schubert’s Symphony No. 5.
The season-opening fanfare that is Barfield’s Invictus – a 2020 composition that reflects on this unique moment in time – is followed by Haydn’s Overture to L’isola disabitata (The Desert Island) with its several emerging themes and rich and colourful orchestration. In the Concert Music for Strings and Brass – commissioned to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Boston Symphony Orchestra – Paul Hindemith make a virtue of the timbral differences between the brass and the strings, recalling the musical style of the Baroque concerto grosso. The concerts close with Schubert’s delightful Fifth Symphony.
The 2021/22 Season marks the TSO’s 100th Season, and will feature more racialized, Indigenous, and women artists and new compositions, alongside Bach, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, and Dvořák. “As we return to the concert hall, we have created a 2021/22 season that connects you with the emotional power and shared humanity of enjoying music together”, says Gimeno. The 100th season celebration will include a new work by Francisco Coll celebrating the TSO’s enduring relationship with their city. Five Toronto-based composers will première their “Celebration Preludes” in the spring. The highly celebrated and award-winning Samy Moussa—born in Montréal – assumes the role of Spotlight Artist for the 2021/22 season. Five of his compositions, including the World Première of Symphony No. 2 (a TSO Commission), will be featured during the year. The Spotlight Artist role was created by Gustavo Gimeno to invite audiences to explore the breadth of an individual artist’s repertoire, and to delve deeper into their unique musical language.