New composer, conductors and soloists on tap in Utah Symphony’s 2020-21 season

Tue Feb 04, 2020 at 12:00 pm
By Edward Reichel
Arlene Sierra will be the Utah Symphony’s composer-in-association for the 2020-21 season. Photo: Ian Phillips-McLaren

The Utah Symphony’s 2020-21 season will feature a new composer-in-association, the local debuts of several noted conductors and soloists, as well as the continuation of the orchestra’s Beethoven celebration with all five piano concertos.

Thierry Fischer’s penultimate season in Salt Lake City will also mark his tenth full season as music director. Fischer will conduct 10 of the 18 masterworks concerts in the upcoming season. Among the works on his programs are Arnold Schoenberg’s two chamber symphonies, Igor Stravinsky’s ballet Agon, Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 and Richard Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben.

In this 250th year of Beethoven’s birth, the composer’s music will open the season September 18-19 with Stephen Hough as soloist in the Piano Concerto No. 5, “Emperor.” Hough will return the following weekend for Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4. 

American composer Arlene Sierra will be the Utah Symphony’s composer-in-association for 2020-21. The orchestra will play several of her works, including the United States premieres of Aquilo on November 13-14, her Nature Symphony, in January 2021 and the world premiere of her Concerto for Orchestra, on April 23-24.

Flutist Emmanuel Pahud, returns to Salt Lake City as artist-in-association. The acclaimed French flutist will appear with the orchestra twice next season, playing Carl Nielsen’s Flute Concerto on February 19-20 and giving the U.S. premiere of Philippe Manoury’s Saccades, on May 21-22.

Six guest conductors will make their Utah Symphony debuts in the 2020-21 season: Ludovioc Morlot, Marc Albrecht, Shiyeon Sung, Rune Bergmann, and Domingo Hindoyan. Soloists making their local debuts are violist Tabea Zimmermann, violinist Inmo Yang and pianists Benjamin Grosvenor and Steven Osborne.

Zimmermann will perform Berlioz’s Harold in Italy on November 20-21 and Yang tackles Mendelssohn’s ever- popular Violin Concerto on February 5-6. Grosvenor will be the soloist in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 on October 23-24 and Osborne will perform Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 12 on March 26-27.

Among soloists returning to the Abravanel Hall stage are pianists Ingrid Fliter and Louis Schwizgebel. Fliter will solo in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 on December 4-5, and Schwizgebel will play Beethoven’s Second Piano Concerto the following weekend. Violinist Vadim Gluzman will appear with the orchestra on January 8-9, 2021, in Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2.

Guest conductors include the return of Jun Märkl on October 23-24, conducting a program of Schumann, Beethoven and Brahms, and the Seattle Symphony’s conductor emeritus Ludovic Morlot on January 29-30, 2021, who will make his local debut leading the orchestra in music by Arlene Sierra, Rodrigo and Schumann.

Subscription renewals and purchases are available at or 801- 533-6683. Single tickets go on sale June 9. 

Leave a Comment