Already a dominant presence at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Yannick Nézet-Séguin now promises to envelop Carnegie Hall, increasing his five appearances this season to nine in the 2019-2020 lineup, announced Wednesday.
He is bringing the Philadelphia Orchestra with him for a complete Beethoven symphony cycle that will be spread over four concerts between March 13 and April 3, 2020. That will bring the Philadelphians' total Carnegie appearances to five for the 2019-2020 season, including a Bartok/Strauss program Oct. 15, 2019 featuring guest pianist Helene Grimaud.
This current season’s count is three appearances; the remaining two are on March 8 and June 7.
Nézet-Séguin is one of the four artists that Carnegie Hall awarded with a “Perspectives” series for 2019-20, which means more concerts plus personal choices of repertoire.
The Beethoven cycle owes to Beethoven’s 250th birthday. But it’s also a sign of artistic credibility that this relatively youthful conductor – age 43 – is ready for all nine Beethoven symphonies performed during an intensive period of time.
Another factor boosting Nézet-Séguin’s presence at Carnegie Hall is mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato, who also has a Perspectives series, including an appearance in Schubert’s bleak, masterpiece song cycle Winterreise, which is normally sung by men.
DiDonato took on that evening-length piece at Nézet-Séguin’s suggestion, and they played two concerts late last year in the Midwest with him accompanying her on piano. On Dec. 15, 2019, they will perform Winterreise at Carnegie Hall. The conductor will also appear at Carnegie leading the orchestra of the Metropolitan Opera, as well as his Orchestre Métropolitain de Montréal.
The talent lined up for Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 represents a nexus of Nézet-Séguin’s various lives.