Xian Zhang conducts DSO in works by Mozart and Ogonek this week

Violinist Karen Gomyo is featured soloist in Elizabeth Ogonek’s In Silence 

Detroit, (May 23, 2022) – This week, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) welcomes conductor Xian Zhang to Orchestra Hall for three concerts featuring Mozart’s Symphony No. 39 in E-flat major, K. 543, and Elizabeth Ogonek’s In Silence, the latter featuring guest soloist, violinist Karen Gomyo. Due to an unexpected complication with the music for Chevalier de Saint-Georges' Violin Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 5, it will no longer appear on the program. The remainder of the program remains as announced. Ogonek’s 2017 work, In Silence, is inspired by the music of Baroque composer Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber, known as one of the most forward-thinking composers of his time. Biber used extended techniques for strings that would not become standard until the 20th century. 

Xian Zhang Conducts Mozart & Ogonek will take place Thursday, May 26 at 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 27 at 10:45 a.m., and Saturday, May 28 at 8 p.m. at Orchestra Hall. 

The May 28 performance will also be webcast for free at dso.org and via Facebook Live as part of the DSO’s Live from Orchestra Hall series. 

DSO safety policies: Masks are strongly recommended for all patrons attending events at The Max and other DSO venues. The current CDC COVID-19 community level in our area is HIGH. The CDC strongly recommends wearing a mask in all public indoor areas regardless of vaccination status. Proof of full vaccination for COVID-19 or a negative COVID-19 test for all guests is still required upon entry. Safety policies are regularly assessed and subject to change. Patrons should visit dso.org/safetyplan for the latest information ahead of their event. 

Tickets for these performances start at $15 and can be purchased at dso.org or by calling the Box Office at 313.576.5111, open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

The title sponsor of the DSO’s Classical Series is PVS Chemicals, Inc. DSO Live is presented by Ford Motor Company Fund and made possible by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Digital programming is produced from the Al Glancy Control Room.  


PVS Classical Series 
Thursday, May 26 at 7:30 p.m. 
Friday, May 27 at 10:45 a.m.  
Saturday, May 28 at 8 p.m. 
Xian Zhang, conductor 
Karen Gomyo, violin 

Violinist Karen Gomyo returns to the DSO to perform Elizabeth Ogonek’s 2017 work In Silence, inspired by the music of Baroque composer Heinrich Ignaz Franz von Biber, known as one of the most forward-thinking composers of his time, who used extended techniques for strings that would not become standard until the 20th century. We also hear one of the famed late symphonies of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the majestic Symphony No. 39. Please note: Due to an unexpected complication with the music for Chevalier de Saint-Georges’ Violin Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 5, it will not be performed this week. 
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART Symphony No. 39 in E-flat major, K. 543 


About Xian Zhang 
Xian Zhang currently serves as Music Director of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. Since taking up this position, she has commissioned works from such composers as Thomas Adès, Qigang Chen, Christopher Rouse, Tyshawn Sorey, Vivian Li, Gary Morgan, Christian McBride, and Paquito D’Rivera. She is responsible for introducing an annual Lunar New Year Celebration concert to the orchestra and will remain at the helm of the orchestra through and beyond their 100th anniversary in 2022. 

The acclaim she has been receiving for her work in New Jersey has resulted in a strong North American career, with upcoming engagements which include Houston, Minnesota, Philadelphia, and Detroit Symphony Orchestras. Last season, she performed with the Dallas, Baltimore, Montreal, and Ottawa (NAC) symphony orchestras. Planned weeks with Chicago Symphony and Cincinnati Symphony have been postponed a season. In August 2019, she returned to Los Angeles Philharmonic to conduct the world premiere of Caroline Shaw’s The Observatory and Beethoven 9. 

Zhang’s European engagements this season and next include London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra (Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde), Warsaw Philharmonic, and MDR Leipzig. Last season, she conducted the Orchestre National de Lyon at the Paris Philharmonie (Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique), and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France as part of La Folle Journée festival in Nantes. 

In the opera world this season, Zhang will conduct Tosca for Cincinnati Opera, and La Traviata for Oslo Opera. Her debuts with Santa Fe opera (world premiere of Huang Ruo’s M. Butterfly in August 2020) and The Metropolitan Opera (La bohème in spring 2021) have been impacted by Covid-19. Previous opera engagements have included Nabucco with Welsh National Opera, Otello with Savonlinna Festival, La Traviata for Den Norske Opera (Oslo), La Bohème for English National Opera, and La forza del destino with National Opera, Washington D.C. 

Zhang holds the positions of Principal Guest Conductor of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Conductor Emeritus of Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano Giuseppe Verdi, following a hugely successful period from 2009–2016 as Music Director. She has previously served as Principal Guest Conductor of the BBC National Orchestra & Chorus of Wales and was the first female conductor to hold a titled role with a BBC orchestra. In 2002, she won first prize in the Maazel-Vilar Conductor’s Competition. She was appointed New York Philharmonic’s Assistant Conductor in 2002, subsequently becoming their Associate Conductor and the first holder of the Arturo Toscanini Chair. 

About Karen Gomyo 
Born in Tokyo and beginning her musical career in Montréal and New York, violinist Karen Gomyo has recently made Berlin her home. A musician of the highest calibre, the Chicago Tribune praised her as “…a first-rate artist of real musical command, vitality, brilliance and intensity.” 

Recent European appearances include Philharmonia Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre Symphonique de Radio France, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, and the Danish National Symphony. In March 2019, Gomyo opened the Dubai Proms with the BBC Symphony and Ben Gernon. Further ahead, Gomyo makes her debut at the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra with Semyon Bychkov. 

Already well established in North America, Gomyo has performed with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Detroit, San Francisco, Dallas, Cincinnati, Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver, St. Louis, and Washington D.C. 

Further afield, her popularity in Australasia continued over the last few seasons as she toured with New Zealand Symphony and also appeared with West Australian Symphony Orchestra in Perth, the Tasmanian Symphony, and in recital at the Sydney Opera House. 

Strongly committed to contemporary works, Gomyo gave the North American premiere of Matthias Pintscher’s Concerto No. 2 Mar’eh with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington under the baton of the composer, as well as Peteris Vasks’ Vox Amoris with the Lapland Chamber Orchestra conducted by John Storgårds. In May 2018, Gomyo performed the world premiere of Samuel Adams’ new Chamber Concerto with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Esa-Pekka Salonen to great critical acclaim. The work was written specifically for Gomyo and commissioned by the CSO’s ‘Music Now’ series for their 20th anniversary. 

Gomyo has had the pleasure of working with such conductors as, Sir Andrew Davis, Cristian Macaleru, David Robertson, David Zinman, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Hannu Lintu, Jaap van Zweden, Jakub Hrusa, James Gaffigan, Karina Canellakis, Leonard Slatkin, Louis Langrée, Mark Wigglesworth, Mirga Gražinyte-Tyla, Neeme Järvi, Pinchas Zukerman, Thomas Dausgaard, Thomas Søndergård, Vasily Petrenko, and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. 

A passionate chamber musician, Gomyo has enjoyed a fruitful collaboration with guitarist Ismo Eskelinen, which culminates in the release of a recording of works by Paganini and his baroque predecessors scheduled for November 2019 on BIS Records. Gomyo has also collaborated with Kathryn Stott, Leif Ove Andsnes, James Ehnes, Antoine Tamestit, Emmanuel Pahud, Lawrence Power, Christian Poltéra, Alisa Weilerstein, Tine Thing Helseth, Lars Anders Tomter, Eric le Sage, Daishin Kashimoto, Paul Meyer, and the late Heinrich Schiff. She gave a three-week tour of Australia with Mezzo-soprano Susan Graham and members of the Australian Chamber Orchestra, and has also joined Jeremy Denk at his Milton Court/Barbican residency in London. She also appears regularly at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark. Future chamber plans include a new piano trio with pianist Olli Mustonen and cellist Julian Steckel. 

Gomyo participated as violinist, host, and narrator in a documentary film produced by NHK Japan about Antonio Stradivarius called The Mysteries of the Supreme Violin, which was broadcast worldwide on NHK WORLD. 

She is also a champion of the Nuevo Tango music of Astor Piazzolla, with plans in development for a diverse programme with the San Francisco Symphony. Gomyo regularly collaborates with Piazzolla’s longtime pianist and tango legend Pablo Ziegler, as well as, more recently, with bandoneon players Hector de Curto and JP Jofre. 

Gomyo plays on the “Aurora” Stradivarius violin of 1703 that was bought for her exclusive use by a private sponsor. 

About the DSO 
The most accessible orchestra on the planet, the acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra is known for trailblazing performances, collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists, and a deep connection to its city. As a community-supported orchestra, generous giving by individuals and institutions at all levels drives the continued success and growth of the organization. In January 2020, Italian conductor Jader Bignamini was named the DSO’s next music director to commence with the 2020-2021 season. Celebrated conductor, arranger, and trumpeter Jeff Tyzik is the orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, while Oscar-nominated trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard holds the Fred A. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair. 

Making its home at historic Orchestra Hall within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, the DSO offers a performance schedule that features PVS Classical, PNC Pops, Paradise Jazz, and Young People’s Family Concert series. One of the world’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, Orchestra Hall celebrated its centennial in 2019-2020. In addition, the DSO presents the William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series in seven metro area venues, as well as a robust schedule of eclectic multi-genre performances in its mid-size venue The Cube, constructed and curated with support from Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings. 

A dedication to broadcast innovation began in 1922, when the DSO became the first orchestra in the world to present a live radio broadcast of a concert and continues today with the groundbreaking Live from Orchestra Hallseries of free webcasts, which also reaches tens of thousands of children with the Classroom Edition expansion. With growing attendance and unwavering philanthropic support from the people of Detroit, the DSO actively pursues a mission to embrace and inspire individuals, families, and communities through unsurpassed musical experiences.