Opus One Concerts – Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony
Thursday 22 September, 7.30pm
Sunday 25 September, 7.30pm
Wednesday 28 September, 2.15pm

Tchaikovsky – Fantasy Overture: Hamlet
Liszt       – Piano Concerto No.1
Beethoven   – Symphony No.6, ‘Pastoral’
Conductor   – Sir Mark Elder
Featuring   – Benjamin Grosvenor, Piano
For the first Opus One concerts of the season, Sir Mark and the orchestra are joined by one of the finest young pianists in the world, Benjamin Grosvenor, who performs Liszt’s dazzling First Concerto. As well as being a virtuoso showpiece, the work will also highlight the poetic qualities Benjamin’s playing has in abundance. ‘No one can love the countryside as much as I do’, wrote Beethoven, and this love was eloquently expressed in his timeless ‘Pastoral’ symphony. With its depictions of the ‘happy song of the birds’, the ‘sweet murmur of a brook’, the ‘dreaded storm’ and much more, it never fails to delight and inspire. The concert begins with Tchaikovsky’s tone poem inspired by Shakespeare’s brooding Prince of Denmark, Hamlet.
Listen on Soundcloud: Beethoven Symphony No. 6 ‘Pastoral’ 1st Movement
Tickets from £13 (Including booking fee)

Classical Extravaganza
Saturday 1 October 2016, 7.30pm

Dvořák         – Carnival Overture
Elgar          – Enigma Variations: VIII ‘WN’, IX ‘Nimrod’, XIV ‘Finale’
Rossini        – Overture: William Tell
Pachelbel      – Canon
Shostakovich  – Romance from ‘The Gadfly’
Bernstein      – Overture: Candide
Handel         – Music for the Royal Fireworks: excerpts
Fauré          – Pavane
Coates         – Calling All Workers

Conductor   –   Stephen Bell
A feast of the world’s best-loved classical favourites. The Halle’s Extravaganzas always receive a rousing reception and are the perfect introduction to live orchestral music. Hear Stephen Bell conduct one of Europe’s great orchestras as they perform hit after hit from the classical world.
Listen on Soundcloud: Dvořák Carnival Overture
Watch on YouTube: The Hallé performing Rossini’s Overture: William Tell
Tickets from £13.50

Beethoven’s Choral Symphony
Thursday 6 October, 7.30pm

Verdi           – Macbeth: scenes
Beethoven       – Symphony No.9, ‘Choral’
Conductor   –   Sir Mark Elder
Featuring   –   Béatrice Uria-Monzon, Mezzo-Soprano | Scott Hendricks, Baritone | Natalya Romaniw, Soprano | Madeleine Shaw, Mezzo-Soprano | Allan Clayton, Tenor | Hallé Choir
Sir Mark, the Hallé and the Hallé Choir open the Thursday series in grandly dramatic fashion. The first half features scenes from Verdi’s Macbeth. Throughout, Verdi strove to convey Shakespeare’s vivid sense of pity and terror. The selection ends with the famous sleepwalking scene in which Lady Macbeth descends into madness. Beethoven’s Ninth, described by Wagner as ‘the ultimate symphony’, also confronts terror and the darker side of existence. Overall, however, it is an extraordinary journey towards enlightenment that culminates in a rapturous setting of Schiller’s ‘Ode to Joy’.
Tickets from £13.50 (including booking fee)

Opus One Concerts: Night on the Bare Mountain
Wednesday 19 October, 2.15pm
Thursday 20 October, 7.30pm
Sunday 23 October, 7.30pm

Mussorgsky orch. Rimsky-Korsakov – Night on the Bare Mountain
Mozart – Flute and Harp Concerto
Bartók       – Hungarian Sketches
Borodin      – Symphony No.2
Conductor   –   Gergely Madaras
Featuring   –   Katherine Baker, Flute | Marie Leenhardt, Harp
Two of the Hallé’s principal players, Katherine Baker and Marie Leenhardt are soloists in Mozart’s lovely Flute and Harp Concerto. It is a work of great delicacy and charm in which the two instruments complement each other to perfection. In the rest of the programme the young Hungarian Gergely Madaras, a rising star of the podium, conducts three varied Eastern European works: Mussorgsky’s devilish Night on the Bare Mountain; Bartók’s Hungarian Sketches – with their infectious Magyar merriment and melancholy; and finally Borodin’s stirring Second Symphony, a piece once aptly described as having ‘the flavour of an ancient Russian epic’. Its finale is an exultant orchestral revel.
Listen on Soundcloud: Mussorgsky orch. Rimsky-Korsakov            Night on the Bare Mountain
Tickets from £13 (including booking fee)

A Child of Our Time
Thursday 27 October 7.30pm

Copland       – Fanfare for the Common Man
Britten       – Sinfonia da Requiem
Tippett       – A Child of Our Time
Conductor   –   Ryan Wigglesworth
Featuring   –   Sophie Bevan, Soprano | Jennifer Johnston, Mezza-soprano | Mark Padmore, Tenor | Matthew Brook, Bass-baritone | Hallé Choir
Tippett’s choral masterpiece A Child of Our Time was written at the beginning of the Second World War as a protest against ‘man’s inhumanity to man’. Modelled on Handel’s Messiah and the Passions of J.S. Bach, its emotional essence lies in five spirituals Tippett incorporated into the score in which the suffering of oppressed people throughout history is given universal resonance. Britten’s Sinfonia da Requiem dates from the same troubled period as the Tippett and is also an intensely humanistic piece. In the work Britten expresses anger and despair at the cataclysm beginning to engulf the world. As a precursor to both, the concert opens with Copland’s great tribute to his fellow Americans, a piece also written during the same conflict.
Tickets from £13.50 (including booking fee)

The Music of Star Wars Episodes I – VII
Saturday 29 October, 7.30pm

Conductor   –   Stephen Bell
Featuring   –   Tom Redmond, Presenter | Hallé Youth Choir
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away …
Feel the full force of the Hallé as we bring the highlights of John Williams’ music from every episode of Star Wars to the stage of The Bridgewater Hall. Packed with some of the most recognisable cinematic themes from The Phantom Menace to The Force Awakens this concert packs more punch than an Imperial blaster. Dress to impress and relive the rise and fall of the Empire in one action packed evening.
May the Force be with you.
Tickets from £13.50

Pre-concert Event, 6.15pm
The Science behind Star Wars

A panel discussion with Tom Redmond and experts from across the scientific community, and learn what is fact and what is fiction in the Star Wars universe.
The pre-concert event will take place in the auditorium and is free for concert ticket holders.
In partnership with Manchester Science Festival.

The Halle Orchestra.  Image credit Russel Hart.