With labor talks at both orchestras about to heat up again, and with the Minnesota Orchestra not scheduled to open its season for another SEVEN WEEKS, it's nice to anticipate some actual music coming fairly soon. 

The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra launches its 2012-13 season on Friday, Sept. 7, with Edo de Waart conducting music of Stravinsky and Beethoven.

Pianist Christian Zacharias returns for the chamber ensemble's second weekend, performing the Brahms Piano Concert No. 1.

In 2008, the SPCO gave the world premiere to a work it commissioned of Minnesota native Maria Schneider, pictured, until then best known as a jazz composer and conductor. Schneider set poems by the 20th-century Brazilian poet Carlos Drummond de Andrade, translated by American poet Mark Strand. The settings were sung by soprano Dawn Upshaw.

As reviewed by Star Tribune contributor William Randall Beard, the songs were "original and mesmerizing."

Go here for streaming audio of the 2008 work, along with Schneider's own notes on her compositional strategy.

The 25-minute work was performed by the SPCO at Carnegie Hall in 2011 (reviewed here), and it will be reprised in concerts on Sept. 28 (in Wayzata) and Sept. 29 (St. Paul).The SPCO says it will record the song cycle for a future release.

Danish conductor Thomas Dausgaard will make his SPCO debut just after, in concerts on Oct. 5 and 6 that will feature music of Wagner, Nielsen and Beethoven.


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