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Symphony announces its new season

Valerie Hill

February 15, 2012

KITCHENER — Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony music director Edwin Outwater promised that the symphony’s 2012-2013 season will be “an extension of the inventiveness” of the previous season.


Outwater delivered a few details of the symphony’s eight Subscription Series at Wednesday night’s season launch, held at the Conrad Centre for Performing Arts, to a room filled with symphony supporters.


Ode to Joy, Ode to Kitchener will kick off the Sept. 22 gala opening of the Signature Series and will celebrate the city’s 100th anniversary year. Ode to Joy is the final movement in Beethoven Symphony No. 9.


Beethoven’s 9th was written at the highest level of art and also it appeals to everyone,” Outwater said, noting that in typical gala style, the evening will feature three choirs and three soloists.


The next production in the series has a decidedly French Canadian flair: Lefèvre’s Romantic Discovery, with pianist Alain Lefèvre. The Oct. 22 concert will feature Piano Concerto 4 by Quebec pianist/composer André Mathieu.


“It’s a really, really wonderful piece of music.”


Outwater is particularly keen on the Mahler Symphony 5 concert, planned for Nov. 30. Not necessarily a favourite composer of the masses, Mahler’s music does have special significance for Outwater.


“Mahler is the most important composer, to me,” said Outwater, noting the music seems to probe deeper into “what it is to be alive.”


In February 2013, Outwater will conduct Epic Tchaikovsky, showing the many different sides of the composer. There will be a Sunday matinee concert on Feb. 24, featuring a concert entitled Intimate Tchaikovsky.


Outwater is also thrilled to feature organist Cameron Carpenter, a young man he said is recognized as “one of the most phenomenal organists on the planet.


“He can make more music with his feet than I can make with two hands. He’s amazing.”


Carpenter will also perform one of his own compositions, The Scandal. “Composer/performer is coming back and Cameron is in that vein,” said Outwater.


Spring of 2013 will feature James Judd conducting Viennese music and Outwater conducting Berlioz’s Symphony Fantastique, a piece of music he said was “written around the time of Beethoven but it seems so modern. Nobody knows how he got his ideas.”


The Pops Series will begin Sept. 28 with Last Night at the Proms, which celebrates Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee.


Then in the fall, Sci-Fi Fantasy: An Evening of Blockbusters, features music from “incredible film scores,” Outwater said.


In January, and An All Gershwin Evening will bring the music of the great American composer, with soloists Kimberly Barber and Aaron St. Clair Nicholson.


In the spring of 2013, things get lively with a new show, Disney in Concert: Magical Music from the Movie then in April, Cirque de la Symphonie returns with a new show. In May, TAP! takes over the stage, featuring dance.


Expect a season filled with “familiar things and brand new things” said Outwater, adding they will continue with the matinee series as well as Intersections, a series he describes as “colourful and unusual.”


Intersections features Bollywood and Beyond: Masters and Icons of Indian Music and an evening with brothers, Andy and Jim Creeggan of The Barenaked Ladies fame.


The Baroque series, led by Stephen Sitarski, will take music into the community, in churches around the region and in Guelph. As well there will be a Barenaked Ladies concert and a return of Bugs Bunny at the Symphony, featuring the music of by Carl Stalling, as well as family concerts, kinder concerts for children five and under, plus youth orchestra concerts.