Feb 24, 2022
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- Click here to see the SF Symphony’s full concert calendar through the rest of the 2021–22 season.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA—The San Francisco Symphony’s Spotlight Series, new in the 2021–22 season, features ascendant artists in their Davies Symphony Hall recital debuts. Soloists presented by the Spotlight Series March–June 2022 include pianist Drew Petersen, violinist Randall Goosby with pianist Zhu Wang, violinist Noa Wildschut with pianist Elisabeth Brauß, and saxophonist Steven Banks with pianist Xak Bjerken.
On March 23, pianist Drew Petersen presents a solo recital performing Maurice Ravel’s devilishly demanding Gaspard de la nuit, selections from Frédéric Chopin’s evocative Études, and Sergei Rachmaninoff’s dramatic Piano Sonata No. 2. Drew Petersen is a sought-after soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician. He is the recipient of the 2018 Avery Fisher Career Grant, 2017 American Pianists Award, and the Christel DeHaan Fellow of the American Pianists Association. Petersen’s 2021–22 season includes performances with orchestras in Cincinnati, Santa Fe, Buffalo, Delaware, Columbus, and Indianapolis and recitals in Madison, WI, and Sanibel, FL. Drew Petersen’s firm belief in the importance of music in contemporary society led to collaborations with Young Audiences NY that presents performances in New York City’s public schools, and he continually advocates for the necessity of classical music and other arts in society.
On April 13, violinist Randall Goosby is joined by pianist Zhu Wang for a program of Antonín Dvořák’s Sonatina for Violin and Piano—a work brimming with Czech folk tunes and melodies, William Grant Still’s Suite for Violin and Piano—written to depict sculptures by modern Black artists, and Edvard Grieg’s rustic and sweet Violin Sonata No. 3. Signed exclusively to Decca Classics in 2020 at the age of 24, Randall Goosby is acclaimed for the sensitivity and intensity of his musicianship alongside his determination to make music more inclusive and accessible, as well as bringing the music of under-represented composers to light. Additional highlights of Goosby’s 2021–22 season include debuts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, and Philharmonia Orchestra, and recital appearances at London’s Wigmore Hall, New York’s 92nd Street Y, and Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. June 2021 marked the release of Goosby’s debut album for Decca titled Roots, a celebration of classical music by Black composers and inspired by Black American culture, which explores its evolution from the spiritual through to present-day compositions. Collaborating with pianist Zhu Wang, Goosby has curated the album paying homage to the pioneering artists that paved the way for him and other artists of color. An avid chamber musician and new music advocate, Zhu Wang’s 2021–22 season includes appearances with Goosby at the 92nd Street Y and Merkin Hall, world premiere performances of Nina Shekhar’s work for solo piano and Florence Price’s Piano Concerto in One Movement with Mississippi Symphony Orchestra, and solo recital debuts at Carnegie’ s Zankel Hall and Kenney Center.
On April 20, violinist Noa Wildschut and pianist Elizabeth Brauß perform Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s wistful Violin Sonata in E minor, K.304 (K300c), Maurice Ravel’s Violin Sonata No. 2 and Four Souvenirs for Violin and Piano by Paul Schoenfield—both inspired by American jazz and blues traditions, and Joey Roukens’ Sarasvati—a work written specifically for Wildschut and Brauß. Noa Wildschut made her debut in the main hall of Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw at the age of seven and today has firmly gained her place on the international stage. Wildschut is regularly invited for festivals, recitals, and solo performances with orchestras, both in her home country, the Netherlands, and abroad. A member of the BBC New Generation Artist Scheme (NGA), pianist Elisabeth Brauß was recently announced as recipient of the Terence Judd-Hallé Award, awarded to a NGA graduate considered to be on the cusp of a major international career, as part of a new partnership between NGA and the Hallé Orchestra. This season, Brauß makes her debut with Hallé Orchestra, Staatsphilharmonie Nürnberg, and Göttinger Symphonie Orchester. The collaboration between Wildschut and Brauß began in 2018, and since then the two have performed as a duo throughout Europe, including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and Philharmonie Halls in both Paris and Cologne.
On June 1, classical saxophonist Steven Banks will be joined by pianist Xak Bjerken for a program including Paul Creston’s dynamic Sonata for Alto Saxophone and Piano, Johannes Brahms’ late-in-life Sonata in F minor, Op. 120, no.1 (arranged for saxophone), and Banks’ own composition Come As You Are—a lyrical, deeply personal work inspired by traditional spirituals. Steven Banks regularly gives recitals at universities, performing arts series, and festivals across the United States and abroad, and has established himself as an emerging composer. Banks is an advocate for diversity and inclusion in music education, performance, and newly commissioned works in the classical realm. Pianist Xak Bjerken has appeared with orchestras around the world, held chamber music residencies at the Tanglewood Music Center, Spoleto Festival, and Olympic Music Festival, and for many years performed throughout the U.S. as a member of the Los Angeles Piano Quartet. Bjerken is the director of new music ensemble Ensemble X and serves as Professor of Music at Cornell University where he also co-directs the international chamber music festival Mayfest.
CALENDAR EDITORS, PLEASE NOTE:
Tickets for concerts at Davies Symphony can be purchased via sfsymphony.org or by calling the San Francisco Symphony Box Office at 415-864-6000. Single ticket prices for Spotlight Series recitals are $60; $25 tickets are available for those who subscribe to three or more recitals.
Davies Symphony Hall is located at 201 Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco.
Health & Safety Information
Davies Symphony Hall is currently operating at full audience capacity. A face covering is required for entry into Davies Symphony Hall and must be worn at all times. Due to the transmissibility of the Omicron variant, the SF Symphony strongly recommends that patrons wear a non-vented respirator, such as an N95, KN95, or KF94 face mask. Effective February 1, 2022, the San Francisco Symphony requires proof of up-to-date vaccination against COVID-19 for everyone entering Davies Symphony Hall ages 16 and up who’s eligible—including patrons, performers, volunteers, and staff. “Up-to-date vaccination” is defined as two weeks after completion of the two-dose regimen of Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, one dose of Johnson & Johnson vaccine, or other WHO authorized COVID-19 vaccine, and one week after receiving a booster shot, for those eligible. Beginning March 1, 2022, this requirement is expanded to ages 12 and older. Patrons under age 12 must show proof of up-to-date vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test (PCR test taken within 2 days of event entry or antigen [rapid] test taken within 1 day of event entry.
For those patrons under age 12 who wish to show verification of a negative COVID-19 test result, the following are acceptable as proof: a printed document (from the test provider or laboratory); or an email, text message, web page, or application (app) screen displayed on a phone or mobile device from the test provider or laboratory. The information should include person’s name, type of test performed, negative test result, and date the test was administered. Self-administered antigen testing is not acceptable at this time, but patrons may bring an unopened at-home rapid test with them to Davies Symphony Hall to take with a verified EMT present. Details about health and safety protocols at Davies Symphony Hall can be found here.
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