Piano superstar André Watts returns to perform at Music Hall 10/24-10/25

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The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (CSO) welcomes back renowned pianist André Watts, performing Edward MacDowell’s richly romantic and dramatic Concerto No. 2 for its Friday and Saturday, October 24-25 concerts at historic Music Hall.

André Watts is one of America’s most beloved classical music superstars, having grown from his illustrious early start with the New York Philharmonic at age 16 to become a much-honored musician. A recipient of a 2011 National Medal of Arts and the 1988 Avery Fisher Prize for outstanding achievement in classical music, Watts is a national presence and a Cincinnati favorite. Mr. Watts will also be honored by the American Classical Music Hall of Fame and the Cincinnati MacDowell Society during these concerts.

Guest conductor Juraj Valčuha returns to lead the CSO in a unique program featuring diverse works from Hungarian composers and lifelong friends, Zoltán Kodály and Béla Bartók. Valčuha has conducted widely across Europe, making his U.S. debut in 2005.

Kodály’s Dances of Galánta reflects the boisterous, “unmusical” folk singing of the Magyars, ethnic Hungarians and the varying tempos and rhythms of the gypsy dances on which the composition was based. Bartok was inspired to compose pantomime The Miraculous Mandarin after reading the one-act play of the same name, written by a Hungarian playwright-turned-Hollywood screenwriter. The tumultuous piece embodies the drama of the play and the horrors of war-torn 1920s Hungary through its theatrical orchestration and a wordless chorus.

Boundless Backstage
For the Friday, October 24 performance, patrons are invited to the first “Boundless Backstage” experience. For the introductory price of $25, which includes a CSO concert ticket, patrons receive an exclusive backstage experience prior to the concert. The experience includes entering Music Hall through backstage, live music, cash bar and a chance to cross the stage. This experience is in Beta, and is limited to the first 125 guests.

MAC Open Door Concert
This concert is one of the 2014-15 season’s MAC Open Door Concerts, celebrating the cultural diversity, history and heritage of the season’s outstanding artists and composers. The Multicultural Awareness Council (MAC) is a group of diverse community volunteers whose mission is to foster and increase awareness of CSO programs in the greater Cincinnati area through cultural and diverse music programs, educational and community partnerships, scholarships for talented minority student musicians and building diverse audiences.

Classical Conversations
All ticketholders are invited to attend Classical Conversations, beginning one hour prior to these performances in the Music Hall auditorium. Get inside the hearts and minds of the composers and guest artists with these informative discussions. CSO violist Paul Frankenfeld joins CSO Assistant Conductor William White this week.

Tickets for this concert start at just $12 and are available by calling the CSO Box Office at (513) 381-3300 or visiting www.cincinnatisymphony.org.

The CSO is grateful to Boundless Series Sponsor Macy’s; Concert Sponsor, The Ladislas & Vilma Segoe Family Foundation; and Performance Sponsor, The Cincinnati MacDowell Society. The ArtsWave partner for this performance is Cincinnati Bell.