The 2018/2019 Seattle Symphony subscription season at a glance

Raymond Chen

Raymond

For many years, I’ve put together a little pocket guide to the Seattle Symphony subscription season for my symphony friends to help them decide which ticket package they want. At some point, we may start subscribing again, but for now, we pick-and-choose individual concerts.

Here’s the at-a-glance season guide for the 2018/2019 season, still with no comments from me because it’s not worth trying to rate every piece to help my friends pick one concert. If you’re my friend and want recommendations, just call. Besides, you can probably preview nearly all of the pieces nowadays (minus the 21st-century stuff) by searching on YouTube.

WeekProgram22137A
7B
8C
8D
7E
7F
8G5HSUBW
09/20
2018
Debussy: Gigues from Images
Janáček: The Cunning Little Vixen Suite
Beethoven: Violin Concerto
         
09/27
2018
Marc-André Dalbavie: La source d’un regard
Ravel: Piano Concerto in G
Debussy: Printemps
Ravel: Daphnis et Chloë Suite #2
         
10/11
2018
Schumann/Dausgaard: “Zwickauer” Symphony¹
Beethoven: Piano Concerto #1
Schumann: Symphony #2
         
10/18
2018
Schumann: Manfred Overture
Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations
Kaija Saariaho: Ciel d’hiver
Beethoven: Symphony #1
       
 
 
 
 
 
10/26
2018
Corelli: Concerto grosso, Op. 6, #1
Handel: Concerto grosso, Op. 3, #2
Muffat: Armonico Tributo #5
Purcell: Dido’s Lament
Handel: Music for the Royal Fireworks
         
11/01
2018
Bartók: The Miraculous Mandarin Suite
Shostakovich: Violin Concerto #2
Brahms: Symphony #1
         
11/08
2018
Debussy: Petite suite
Pascal Dusapin: At Swim-Two-Birds²
Tchaikovsky: Symphony #4
       
 
 
 
 
11/15
2018
Berlioz: Roman Carnival Overture
Prokofiev: Piano Concerto #5
Beethoven: Symphony #5
         
11/29
2018
Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto #2
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade
       
 
 
 
01/11
2019
W.F. Bach: Adagio and Fugue
J.C. Bach: Symphony in C
C.P.E. Bach: Harpsichord Concerto in d minor
J.S. Bach: Italian Concerto
J.S. Bach: Flute, Violin, and Harpsichord Concerto in a minor
         
01/17
2019
Sofia Gubaidulina: Offertorium
Bach: “Zion hört die Wächter singen” from Cantata #140
Brahms: Symphony #3
         
01/31
2019
Shostakovich: Symphony #1
Caroline Shaw: Piano Concerto¹
Beethoven: Piano Concerto #3
         
02/14
2019
Dukas: The Sorceror’s Apprentice
Sibelius: Violin Concerto
Prokofiev: Symphony #7
         
02/28
2019
Bach: Piano Concerto #3
Beethoven: Piano Concerto #4
Bartók: Concerto for Orchestra
         
03/07
2019
Lotta Wennäkoski: Hava
Haydn: Symphony #102
Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto
         
03/14 Bach: Mass in b minor         
03/21
2019
Bach/Stokowski: Toccata and Fugue in d minor
John Harbison: What Do We Make of Bach?
for Orchestra and Obligato Organ
Shostakovich: Symphony #15
         
04/04
2019
Langgard: Prelude to Antichrist²
Nielsen: Symphony #2 “The Four Temperaments”
Brahms: Piano Concerto #1
         
04/11
2019
George Walker: Sinfonia #5 “Visions”¹
Szymanowski: Violin Concerto #2
Dvořák: Symphony #9 “From the New World”
       
 
 
 
 
04/18
2019
Debussy/Joël-François Durand: Préludes¹
Ravel: Mother Goose Suite
Marc-André Dalbavie: Sonnets
Mozart: Symphony #40
       
 
 
 
 
 
04/25 Heiner Goebbels: Surrogate Cities¹         
05/03
2019
Vivaldi: Mandolin Concerto in D
Telemann: Trumpet Concerto in D, TWV 51:D7
Paisiello: Mandolin Concerto in E
Vivaldi: Mandolin Concerto in C
Kozeluch: Sinfonia Concertante in E
         
06/08
2019
Hannah Kendall: The Spark Catchers²
Haydn: Symphony #98
Holst: The Planets
         
06/13
2019
Wagner: Prelude to Act III of Lohengrin
R. Strauss: Oboe Concerto
Debussy: Jeux
R. Strauss: Till Eulenspiegel
         
06/20
2019
Wagner: Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde
Debussy: Suite from Pelléas and Mélisande
Debussy: Nocturnes
Janáček: The Eternal Gospel
         
WeekProgram22137A
7B
7C
8D
7E
7F
8G5HSUBW

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¹ World Premiere
² U.S. Premiere

Insider tip: Click a column header to focus on a specific series. (This feature has been around for several years, actually.)

Legend:

22Masterworks 22-concert series (Choice of Thursdays or Saturdays)
13Masterworks 13-concert series (Choice of Thursdays or Saturdays)
7AMasterworks 7-concert series A (Thursdays)
7BMasterworks 7-concert series B (Saturdays)
8CMasterworks 8-concert series C (Thursdays)
8DMasterworks 8-concert series D (Saturdays)
7EMasterworks 7-concert series E (Thursdays)
7FMasterworks 7-concert series F (Saturdays)
8GMasterworks 8-concert series G (Sunday afternoons)
5HMasterworks 5-concert series H (Friday afternoons)
SUUntuxed (Fridays, reduced program)
BWBaroque and Wine (Choice of Fridays or Saturdays)

For those not familiar with the Seattle Symphony ticket package line-ups: Most of the ticket packages are named Masterworks nX where n is the number is the number of concerts in the package, and the letter indicates the variation. Ticket packages have been combined if they are identical save for the day of the week. For example, 8C and 8D are the same concerts; the only difference is that 8C is for Thursday nights, while 8D is for Saturday nights.

This chart doesn’t include concert series such as the Distinguished Artists series which share no concerts with any of the Masterworks concerts.

Notes and changes:

  • The 7[AB], 8[CD], and 7[EF] concert series do not overlap, so you can create your own pseudo-series by taking any two of them, or recreate the 22-concert series by taking all three.
  • The 13-concert series is the same as the 8[CD] and 7[EF] series combined, minus the March 7 and April 11 concerts.
  • The regularly-scheduled Saturday evening concert for the weekend of 01/17/2019 will be held on Friday at 8pm, and the regularly-scheduled Saturday evening concert for the weekend of 02/28/2019 will be held on Sunday at 2pm. Furthermore, the regularly-scheduled Sunday afternoon concert for the weekend of 03/07/2019 will be held on Friday at 8pm.
  • There are always one-off concerts scattered through the year. Here are some highlights:
    • A two-concert Brahms Concerto Festival covers the entire concerto cycle.
    • The Amadeus Live concert screens the Academy Award-winning film with live accompaniment from the symphony.
  • The Seattle Symphony has a ticketing program called Family Connections which provides free symphony tickets for up to two children with the purchase of an adult ticket.
  • I don’t know when they started doing it, but the Seattle Symphony program now includes estimated running times for each piece. You can see examples in this month’s program.
  • This is the final season for Ludovic Morlot, concluding eight years as the symphony’s music director.

Bonus chatter: The estimated running times are a nice touch. I considered with amusement what it would be like if the estimates updated dynamically. “Oh no, he’s taking the repeat in the Bruckner! Recalculating…”

Raymond Chen
Raymond Chen

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