Manchester’s beloved symphony orchestra, The Hallé, returns to the stage this month after a pandemic imposed absence with a full autumn season of shows at The Bridgewater Hall and its sister venue Hallé St Peter’s.

Conductor Sir Mark Elder starts this season’s repertoire with a huge classic, Sibelius’s Symphony No.2 (Sep 23, 26 & 29) – a piece associated with the Hallé since they premiered it in Britain in 1905 . Elder presents it as part of his “stories behind the music” series – including works by Vaughan Williams, Ravel and Thea Musgrave, tracing the influences of these great masters on each other. As part of this year’s Chamber Music Series over at Hallé St Peter’s, pianist Benjamin Grosvenor also makes the leap across town for an unmissable one-off performance of Schumann’s Piano Quartet (Sep 25).

Sir Mark’s second choice of the season, Elgar’s First Symphony, was given its world debut by the Hallé and Hans Richter back in 1908, and it returns with another debut as renowned Latvian violinist Baiba Skride joins the orchestra for the first time (Sep 30). Other highlights include the welcome return of the Hallé Choir to live performance for the first time since February 2020 with Stravinsky’s striking Symphony of Psalms, which is performed alongside Brahms’ Symphony No.3.

As always, the season brings with it a huge number of acclaimed conductors and musicians. The Hallé’s own assistant conductor Delyana Lazarova performs Dvorak’s 9th Symphony ‘From The New World (Oct 13, 14 & 17), Gemma New conducts Copland’s euphoric Third (Oct 21), Stephen Bell leads the Russian Extravaganza (Oct 2), Hallé newcomer Christian Reif conducts Richard Strauss’s Four Last Songs and Mozart’s final symphony (Nov 10, 11 & 14). Look out for star performances from James Ehnes, Marc-Andre Hamelin, Boris Giltburg, Natalya Romaniw and Elisabeth Brauß (among others) across both The Bridgewater shows and Chamber Music Series.

Conductors Richard Balcombe and Stephen Bell lead the season’s one night only Hallé Pops concerts – both celebrating half a century of song, first from Elton John (Oct 30), and then from the Nashville country music scene (Nov 20).  Handel’s Messiah and Mussorgsky’s Pictures From An Exhibition lead us into the Christmas concert calendar and the unmissable Viennese New Year show.

With this much already in the calendar, it’s amazing to think the announcement of the spring season is still to come in October.

A Manchester Wire Partnership post
Thu 23 Sep, Bridgewater Hall, Lower Mosley St, Manchester M2 3WS. And Hallé St Peters, 40 Blossom St, Ancoats, Manchester M4 6BF, Please check each concert for prices
Sarah Walters
Published on:
Tue 21 Sep 2021