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Fall Arts Preview

Notable classical music and opera performances this fall

BSO artistic partner Thomas Ades conducts the orchestra Nov. 3-5.Stu Rosner/file/Stu Rosner

OUROBOROS TRILOGY Two freshly minted operas — Scott Wheeler’s “Naga” and Paola Prestini’s “Gilgamesh” — join Zhou Long’s “Madame White Snake” to make up the ambitious “Ouroboros Trilogy,” which is premiering this month. All three works have librettos by Cerise Lim Jacobs. Michael Counts directs. Through Sept. 17, Cutler Majestic Theatre. 617-824-8400,

ISABELLA STEWART GARDNER MUSEUM A Far Cry, the Gardner’s resident chamber orchestra, kicks off the museum’s Sunday series with a characteristically eclectic program that moves from Haydn to Reich (Sept. 11). The Gardner’s fall lineup will also include three keenly anticipated appearances by the German violinist Isabelle Faust and the Russian pianist Alexander Melnikov (Nov. 6, 13, and 20) performing the complete Beethoven Violin Sonatas. 617-278-5156, (see also


ODYSSEY OPERA Gil Rose leads the adventurous company in the local premiere of Dvorak’s grand opera “Dimitrij.” It will be presented in a concert performance, with a cast that includes Ales Briscein, Dana Buresova, Olga Jelinkova, and Irina Mishura. Sept. 16, Jordan Hall. 617-826-1626,

BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA After a splashy all-Russian opening-night program featuring piano soloist Lang Lang (Sept. 24), Andris Nelsons will lead the orchestra in two concert performances of Strauss’s time-suspending masterwork “Der Rosenkavalier” (Sept. 29 and Oct. 1), featuring a deluxe cast headed by Renée Fleming as the Marschallin, Susan Graham as Octavian, and Erin Morley as Sophie. Also to be noted this fall are composer-conductor Thomas Adès’s first performances (Nov. 3-5) in his newly created role as the BSO’s artistic partner. Symphony Hall. 617-266-1200,

BOSTON LYRIC OPERA BLO opens its 40th-anniversary season with a visit to — of all places — the Boston Opera House, where not a single professional opera has been mounted in more than a quarter-century. The occasion is Calixto Bieito’s staging of Bizet’s “Carmen,” which the company describes as “the largest production [it] has mounted in four decades.” Jennifer Johnson Cano sings the title role, and Roger Honeywell is Don José. David Angus conducts. Sept. 23-Oct. 2, Boston Opera House, 539 Washington St. 617-542-6772,


HANDEL AND HAYDN SOCIETY Under the direction of Harry Christophers, the H&H season starts with a mostly Bach program anchored by the “Magnificat” (Sept. 23-25) and continues with a Beethoven and Mendelssohn program led by Richard Egarr (Oct. 28-30). Symphony Hall. 617-266-3605,

BOSTON EARLY MUSIC FESTIVAL BEMF kicks off its local concert series with an appearance (Oct. 7) by the veteran viol consort Fretwork, which will be joined by soprano Suzie LeBlanc in works by Byrd, Dowland, Gibbons, and Purcell. Look out, too, for the fall’s staged offering (Nov. 26-27), featuring chamber operas by Charpentier and Lalande alongside music of Lully, all of which BEMF is presenting under the title “Versailles: Portrait of a Royal Domain.” 617-661-1812,

BOSTON PHILHARMONIC Benjamin Zander launches his orchestra’s season with works by Lera Auerbach and Tchaikovsky alongside Rachmaninoff’s “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini” featuring pianist Ya-Fei Chuang (Oct. 20-23). Cellist Zuill Bailey will then be the soloist in music of Dutilleux, presented with works by Elgar, Debussy, and Walton (Nov. 17-20). 617-236-0999,

BOSTON BAROQUE Martin Pearlman’s orchestra and chorus return to Bach’s great Mass in B minor, with a lineup of vocal soloists that includes countertenor David Daniels in his Boston Baroque debut. Oct. 21 and 23, Jordan Hall. 617-987-8600,


CELEBRITY SERIES The fall recital bar may well be set high by tenor Ian Bostridge and composer-conductor-pianist Thomas Adès, who will partner for a rare performance of Schubert’s “Winterreise” in Jordan Hall (Oct. 28). And the Berlin Philharmonic makes an eagerly awaited return to town with Mahler’s Seventh Symphony and Pierre Boulez’s “Éclat” under the direction of Simon Rattle (Nov. 11). 617-482-6661,

LARGER ENSEMBLES Steve Lipsitt kicks off the Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms Society’s first full season with works by its namesake composers, including the Brahms Violin Concerto with violinist In Mo Yang (Sept. 11). And Ryan Turner directs the forces of Emmanuel Music in a program titled “Apollo,” devoted to Handel’s “Apollo e Dafne,” Mozart’s “Apollo et Hyacinthus,” and a new overture by Edwin Sung (Oct. 1 and 2).,

NEW MUSIC Dinosaur Annex’s season opener features a Lee Hyla premiere (Sept. 18); Guerilla Opera opens its 10th season with Nicholas Vines’s “Loose, Wet, Perforated” (Sept. 21-24); Boston Musica Viva leads off with a David Rakowski premiere and Boulez’s iconic “Le Marteau sans Maître” (Sept. 24); Boston Modern Orchestra Project’s “American Masters” program includes a special tribute to Steven Stucky (Oct. 8); Collage New Music has works by William Kraft, Arthur Berger, and others (Oct. 24); and the New England Philharmonic gives an Andy Vores premiere and offers a performance of Yehudi Wyner’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Piano Concerto with pianist Geoffrey Burleson (Oct. 29),,,,,


MORE CHAMBER MUSIC Peggy Pearson’s Winsor Music celebrates its 20th-anniversary season with works by Haydn, Brahms, and Lev Mamuya (Sept. 18); Boston Chamber Music Society offers Beethoven, Schumann, and more Adès (Sept. 25); Chameleon Arts Ensemble plays Schoenberg’s “Verklärte Nacht” (Oct 1 and 2); Radius Ensemble pairs Beetho-ven and Bergsma (Oct. 8); Concord Chamber Music Society presents cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han (Oct. 9); Chamber Orchestra of Boston celebrates the music of Robert Edward Smith (Oct. 21); Boston Camerata presents a program titled “City of Fools: Medieval Songs of Rule and Misrule” (Oct. 22); the Boston Symphony Chamber Players are joined by Adès on piano (Oct. 30); and Musicians of the Old Post Road have a program titled “Baltic Sojourn” (Nov. 4 and 6).,,,,,,,,

CHORAL BOSTON Blue Heron continues its ambitious Ockeghem project (Oct. 13-16); Cantata Singers opens with Bach and the first American performance of Zelenka’s “Laetatus Sum” (Oct. 15); Boston Cecilia starts out with works by Handel and Mozart (Oct. 14); Musica Sacra has a Shakespeare-themed program (Oct. 22); Back Bay Chorale sings “Music of the Spirit(s)” (Oct. 30); Chorus pro Musica takes on Beethoven’s “Missa Solemnis” (Nov. 4); Masterworks Chorale sings Brahms and Ned Rorem (Nov. 11); and Cappella Clausura offers music by Sulpitia Cesis, Arvo Pärt, and John Tavener (Nov. 19-20). Information on many other local choruses is available at


HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE SCHOOLS The esteemed violinist and teacher Miriam Fried celebrates her 70th birthday with a two-part performance of Bach’s complete Sonatas and Partitas (Sept. 18) at New England Conservatory, which also continues its signature First Monday chamber series (Oct. 3); Longy’s annual SeptemberFest kicks off with a “Musik und Politik” program featuring works by Weill, Eisler, and Brecht (Sept. 23); composer Fred Lerdahl takes up a residency at Boston University’s Center for New Music, culminating in a performance by Sound Icon (Sept. 30); and the Parker Quartet continues its Harvard residency with works by Britten and Schubert (Sept. 30).,,,


Jeremy Eichler will be on leave from the Globe through June 2017. Follow him on Twitter at @Jeremy_Eichler.