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Strauss' Also sprach Zarathustra & Dueñas Performs Lalo

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Strauss' Also sprach Zarathustra & Dueñas Performs Lalo

Thursday, June 8—Saturday, June 10, 2023

Thursday, June 8—Saturday, June 10, 2023
Orchestra Hall
2 hours

On our final classical program of the season, the rhythms and harmonies of Spain infuse Lalo’s exciting work for solo violin and orchestra. The soloist on these concerts is the young Spanish violinist María Dueñas, winner of the Yehudi Menuhin Competition 2021. Strauss’s Also sprach Zarathustra, the first minute of which is featured prominently in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, is a lush, thrilling tone poem inspired by Friedrich Nietzchse’s book of the same name. The concert opens with an exciting fanfare by Wynton Marsalis titled Herald, Holler and Halleujah!

Join us at 6:30pm, Thursday, June 8 for a special Between 2 Stands edition Pre-concert Talk! Pre-concert Talks are a great way to learn more about the music and the musicians on the stage. Come engage with your hosts Abe Feder (Assistant Principal Cello), Scott Strong (horn), and Andrés Pichardo-Rosenthal (Assistant Principal Percussion) who will interact with the audience and provide the musician's perspective on the performance.


Herald, Holler and Hallelujah!
Symphonie Espagnole
Also sprach Zarathustra


Jader Bignamini


Jader Bignamini was introduced as the 18th music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in January 2020, commencing with the 2020-2021 season. He kicked off his tenure as DSO Music Director with the launch of DSO Digital Concerts in September 2020, conducting works by Copland, Puccini, Tchaikovsky, and Saint-Georges. His infectious passion and artistic excellence set the tone for the season ahead, creating extraordinary music and establishing a close relationship with the orchestra. A jazz aficionado, he has immersed himself in Detroit’s rich jazz culture and the influences of American music.

In December, Bignamini returned to Detroit to lead a triumphant performance of Jessie Montgomery’s Starburst, Strauss’s Concerto for Oboe and Small Orchestra, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, “Eroica.” He returned again in May 2021 to conduct four programs including performances with violinist Midori and pianist Orli Shaham.

A native of Crema, Italy, Bignamini studied at the Piacenza Music Conservatory and began his career as a musician (clarinet) with Orchestra Sinfonica La Verdi in Milan, later serving as the group’s resident conductor. Captivated by the operatic arias of legends like Mahler and Tchaikovsky, Jader explored their complexity and power, puzzling out the role that each instrument played in creating a larger-than-life sound. When he conducted his first professional concert at the age of 28, it didn’t feel like a departure, but an arrival.

In the years since, Bignamini has conducted some of the world’s most acclaimed orchestras and opera companies in venues across the globe including working with Riccardo Chailly on concerts of Mahler’s Eighth Symphony in 2013 and his concert debut at La Scala in 2015 for the opening season of La Verdi Orchestra. Recent highlights include debuts with the Houston, Dallas, and Minnesota symphonies; Osaka Philharmonic and Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo; with the Metropolitan Opera, Vienna State Opera, and Dutch National Opera (Madama Butterfly); Bayerische Staatsoper (La Traviata); I Puritani in Montpellier for the Festival of Radio France; Traviata in Tokyo directed by Sofia Coppola; return engagements with Oper Frankfurt (La forza del destino) and Santa Fe Opera (La Bohème); Manon Lescaut at the Bolshoi; Traviata, Madama Butterfly, and Turandot at Arena of Verona; Il Trovatoreand Aida at Rome’s Teatro dell’Opera; Madama Butterfly, I Puritani, and Manon Lescaut at Teatro Massimo in Palermo; Simon Boccanegra and La Forza del Destino at the Verdi Festival in Parma; Ciro in Babilonia at Rossini Opera Festival and La Bohème, Madama Butterfly, and Elisir d’amore at La Fenice in Venice.

When Bignamini leads an orchestra in symphonic repertoire, he conducts without a score, preferring to make direct eye contact with the musicians. He conducts from the heart, forging a profound connection with his musicians that shines through both onstage and off. He both embodies and exudes the excellence and enthusiasm that has long distinguished the DSO’s artistry.

Maria Dueñas

With her impressive musical expressiveness and technical perfection, at the age of only 18, María Dueñas has quickly established herself as one of the most sought-after artists of her generation. Since winning the 2021 Menuhin Competition and the Audience Prize, the Spanish violinist has been in demand worldwide as a soloist and chamber musician. 

In the 2021-2022 season, Dueñas will make her debuts with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Staatskapelle Berlin, Dresdner Philharmonie, Mozarteumorchester Salzburg, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia, NHK Symphony Orchestra, as well as at the Grafenegg Festival, the Vienna Konzerthaus and Zankel Hall (Carnegie Hall, New York), among others. She will tour Spain with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen; the BBC selected her as a New Generation Artist 2021–2023. Another highlight will be the world premiere of a new violin concerto by Gabriela Ortíz with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel, as part of the orchestra's Pan-American Music Initiative. 

The violinist has also performed with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester, Deutsche Radiophilharmonie, Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg, Spanish National Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica de RTVE, National Philharmonic Orchestra of Russia, and Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, under conductors such as Marek Janowski, Manfred Honeck, Vladimir Spivakov, Vassily Sinaisky, Pietari Inkinen, Gustavo Gimeno, Michael Sanderling, Jaime Martín, and Dima Slobodeniouk. 

Dueñas is also passionately active as a composer and chamber musician. She has collaborated with Pablo Ferrández, Matthias Goerne, Itamar Golan and Robert Kulek at the Rheingau Music Festival, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Schubertiade in Vilabertran, Colmar International Festival, Arts Square Festival St. Petersburg, and Verbier Festival. Jordi Cervelló (*1935) dedicated several solo works to her, which Dueñas premiered in Barcelona, most recently his piece Milstein Caprice 

She has been awarded a number of first prizes in international violin competitions, including most recently the Viktor Tretyakov International Violin Competition (Grand Prix and several special prizes), Getting to Carnegie Competition, Vladimir Spivakov International Competition, Zhuhai Mozart International Competition, and Yankelevitch Competition, to name a few. She has also been awarded the Ojo Crítico 2020 of the Spanish Radio and the LOTTO-Förderpreis of the Rheingau Musik Festival 2021. 

Born in Granada (Spain), Dueñas began her musical education at the age of five, first studying at the Carl Maria von Weber Academy of Music in Dresden, before joining the class of acclaimed pedagogue Prof. Boris Kuschnir at the Music and Art Private University of the City of Vienna and the University of Music and Performing Arts of Graz in 2016.  

Dueñas plays on the Niccolò Gagliano violin 17?4, kindly on loan from Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben and on the Guarneri del Gesù “Muntz” 1736, on generous loan from Nippon Music Foundation. Additionally, as the winner of the 2021 Menuhin Competition, she will enjoy a two-year-loan of a Stradivarius violin from the private collection of Jonathan Moulds. 

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Saturday, June 10
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María Dueñas on Between 2 Stands Podcast June 2022
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