Juraj Valcuha Leads HSO in This Beethoven Masterpiece
This weekend at Jones Hall in downtown Houston, Texas, the Houston Symphony Orchestra’s Director Designate, Juraj Valcuha [who will begin his directorship in the fall of 2022 with the 2022-2023 concert season] will have a debut performance leading our world class orchestra in a Beethoven blockbuster masterpiece: Symphony #9 in D minor, “Choral”.
My wife, Sheralyn and I, are excited and blessed to be in attendance on Saturday night in Jones Hall, in the final concert of the 2021-2022 season, for our first view of our new director who will be leading, what many musicologists believe to be, the greatest symphony ever composed.
From the HSO Website on Juraj Valcuha: “Born in Bratislava, Slovakia, he studied composition and conducting in his birth place, then at the
Conservatory in St Petersburg (with Ilya Musin), and, finally, at the Conservatoire Supérieur de la Musique in Paris.”
“Conductor Juraj Valčuha is recognized for his effortless expressiveness and depth of musicianship. With sharp baton technique and natural stage presence, the impressive ease of his interpretations translate even the most complex scores into immersive experiences. His profound understanding of composer and score, taste, and naturally elegant style make him one of the most sought-after conductors of his generation.”
Also, from the HSO website: “Music Director Designate Juraj Valčuha leads orchestra, chorus, and vocal soloists in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. Come together in Jones Hall and experience one of classical music’s most moving, uplifting, and inspiring journeys, a rallying cry to hope, humanity, and universal fellowship culminating in the exuberant “Ode to Joy.”
An internationally acclaimed conductor, Juraj Valčuha is the Houston Symphony’s next Music Director and will begin his appointment at the launch of the Symphony’s 2022–23 Season. He succeeds esteemed conductor Andrés Orozco-Estrada, whose tenure concludes at the end of the 2021–22 Season after eight seasons with the orchestra.“
This concert program opens with C. Simon’s An Elegy: A Cry from the Grave.
Beethoven’s iconic Choral symphony in D minor has four movements: 1. Allegro ma non troppo, un poco maestoso; 2. Molto vivace [scherzo-trio]; 3. Adagio Molto e Cantabile; and 4. finale choral.
From it’s captivating opening movement, to it’s amazing scherzo and breathtaking choral finale, sometimes is missed just how beautiful and moving is the third slow movement. It is like it has been dropped from heaven. Well, maybe missed by me. 🙂
As usual when the fetching Mrs. B and I go to a concert in Jones Hall, I like to give a preview of what we will be hearing…and this time what we will be hearing is the amazing masterpiece by the “master”, Ludwig Van Beethoven, his Choral Symphony #9, “Ode to Joy”. So, please turn up the volume put in full screen and enjoy!
L. Van Beethoven: Symphony #9 in D minor, “Choral:
Welcome to Houston Maestro Juraj Valcuha! Houston Symphony Orchestra patrons can’t wait for you leading our great orchestra beginning with the 2022-2023 concert season.