23 concerts in the Shanghai Symphony Concert Hall, Chamber Hall and Urban Music Lawn
3 professional symphony orchestras including New York Philharmonic and BBC Symphony
More than 20 solo artists including Pavel Kolesnikov, Ning Feng, Ute Lemper, Seong-jin Cho and Alisa Weilerstein
5 student performances showcasing young talent in Shanghai
Chinese premiere of two works by Christian Jost - Nocturnal Movements and Naghtfahrten und Sirenen - with jazz pianist Michael Wollny and SSO musicians
Chinese premiere of Raymond Yiu’s Xocolatl by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Sir Andrew Davis
19 performances will be streamed online via Tecent, Youku and BesTV
Shanghai Symphony Orchestra (SSO) today [22 May] announces the programme for their 10th Music in the Summer Air (MISA) Festival as part of their 140th anniversary celebrations. The Festival features visiting orchestras, conductors and soloists performing in 23 events taking place in the Shanghai Symphony Hall’s Concert Hall and its Chamber Hall, and Urban Music Lawn. The two-week Festival presents audiences with a range of music from Chinese Pipa, Arabic music, guitar and Japanese taiko music to contemporary dance.
MISA was founded in 2010 by the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, Shanghai Municipal Education Commission and Long Yu in order to recreate the summer music scene in Shanghai. Over the past ten years MISA has presented 200 performances which have attracted more than 200,000 viewers including 10,000 teenagers.
The Festival aims to reach a wide audience of all ages, with ticket prices starting at just 100 CNY (c. £11 / €13). All of the Urban Music Lawn performances are free to the public. Out of the 23 performances, 19 will be streamed online via multiple platforms such as Tecent, Youku and BesTV.
MISA opens with the New York Philharmonic and their Music Director Jaap van Zweden, performing with pianist Seong-Jin Cho [2 July]. Other main stage concerts include the SSO with Charles Dutoit performing Mozart, Kurt Weill and Berlioz [5 July] and a Steve Reich programme with the Colin Currie Group [10 July]. The SSO’s Conductor-in-Residence Zhang Jiemin conducts Yuan-pu Chiao’s adaptation of Grieg’s Peer Gynt narrated by actor David Wang [9 July]. Sir Andrew Davis and the BBC Symphony Orchestra perform with pianist Pavel Kolesnikov and present a ‘Last Night of the BBC Proms’ inspired programme with mezzo-soprano Catherine Wyn-Rogers, complete with Rule Britannia and Pomp and Circumstance March No. 1 [6 and 7 July]. They will also perform the Chinese premiere of Raymond Yiu’s Xocolatl.
In the Shanghai Symphony Hall’s Chamber Hall, MISA presents concerts by quartet Quatuor Ébène [10 July] and an ensemble from the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra with narrator Warren Mok [9 July]. Jazz pianist Michael Wollny performs alongside SSO musicians and conductor/composer Christian Jost, presenting the Chinese premiere of two works by Jost, Nocturnal Movements and Naghtfahren und Sirenen. Naghtfahren und Sirenen is a pair of works by Wollny, which Christian Jost has recomposed for solo piano and 13 instruments.
A highlight of MISA is its Urban Music Lawn, featuring ‘MISA Open Air’ concerts with an international programme. Avi Avital and Omer Avital present ‘Avital means Avital’ with Itamar Doari and Yonathan Avishai [6 July], contemporary dance ensemble Claroscuro perform [8 July] and middle eastern ensemble MAqam present western and Arabic works [9 July]. Spanish guitarist Pablo Sáinz Villegas performs a solo recital including works by Granados, Albéniz, Tárrega [10 July] and Japanese ensemble Kodo present two MISA Open Air concerts with their Director Tamasaburo Bando as part of their ‘Evolution’ tour [12 and 13 July]. Pipa player Wu Man joins ukelele player Daniel Ho, bassist Brandon Wong and percussionist Randy Drake to present ‘Our World In Song’, a concert ranging from France’s Frére Jacques to Japan’s Sakura, Sakura and Australia’s Waltzing Matilda.
MISA is passionate about fostering young talent and giving young musicians performance opportunities. This year’s Festival includes main-stage performances by its student performance groups, Shanghai Youth Choir, Shanghai Youth Philharmonic Orchestra and Shanghai Student Chinese Orchestra [11, 12, 13 July] in addition to a ‘Very Young Composers’ Concert [8 July] and MISA’s Belt and Road International Youth Music Festival Concert [14 July]. In addition to performance opportunities, MISA also provides a variety of practical opportunities for young people. This includes roles such as volunteers, reporters, music critics and other professional experience days.
Closing the 10th MISA Festival, the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and its Music Director Long Yu perform concertos with soloists Alisa Weilerstein (Dvořák Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104) and Ning Feng (Prokofiev Violin Concerto No. 1 in D major, Op. 19) [15 July]. This concert is a preview of the Orchestra’s three-week 140th anniversary tour which commences in August.
For their tour with Music Director Long Yu, who celebrates his 10th season with the Orchestra, the SSO are joined by three world-class soloists; Alisa Weilerstein (cello), Frank-Peter Zimmerman (violin) and Eric Lu (piano). The tour runs from 14 August to 1 September, during which the Orchestra makes its debuts at the BBC Proms, Edinburgh International Festival, Wolftrap Festival and Ravinia Festival in addition to return visits to Lucerne Festival, Grafenegg Festival and Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw.