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Gustavo Gimeno conducting the TSO with the seats of Roy Thomson Hall behind him
In The News

Débuts & Returns: A Valentine’s TSO Tour

Maestro Gimeno’s first TSO tour takes the Orchestra to Ottawa, New York, and Chicago
December 5, 2022

How do you get to Carnegie Hall? You practise, practise, practise, of course. When will the Toronto Symphony Orchestra return to Carnegie Hall? Very soon! As part of our highly anticipated first tour under the artistic leadership of Music Director Gustavo Gimeno.

Continuing our extended Centennial Celebration, from February 11–14, 2023, the Orchestra will tour three cities and acclaimed venues in Canada and the US, débuting at Chicago’s Symphony Center and returning to Ottawa’s National Arts Centre and New York’s Carnegie Hall, marking Maestro Gimeno’s début at the legendary locale. The TSO has appeared there numerous times—first in 1963, and most recently in 2011.

“As an orchestra of international stature, the Toronto Symphony is looking forward to resuming robust touring activities, and once again carrying the torch for Canadian music abroad,” said our CEO, Mark Williams. “This celebratory visit to two of the most culturally rich cities in the US, in addition to Canada’s capital, will be the first of many tours under Music Director Gustavo Gimeno.” 

“Over the course of 100 years, the Orchestra has come to epitomize all that is best about Toronto: It is a cosmopolitan enterprise, welcoming diverse ideas and influences from every direction. It embraces innovation while respecting tradition. And it fosters creativity, both musically and through community engagement. In short, the Toronto Symphony has earned its place on the world stage, and you can expect to see us at esteemed concert halls across the globe as we enter the next chapter in our history.”

For these performances, Maestro Gimeno has put together a program that tells the story of the 21st-century TSO—a blend of new music, brilliant soloists, and timeless favourites of the classical repertoire, including a work chosen in honour of Valentine’s Day: Prokofiev’s ballet Romeo and Juliet, in a special suite compiled by the Maestro himself. The concert opens with Canadian composer Samy Moussa’s texturally rich Symphony No. 2, which the TSO commissioned and premièred last spring. And rounding out the program is Lalo’s virtuosic Symphonie espagnole, with the extraordinary 19-year-old Spanish violin prodigy María Dueñas as soloist. 

“For many reasons, I have been anticipating my very first tour as TSO Music Director,” said Gimeno. “Not only will it mark my Carnegie Hall début, but it will also provide us with the opportunity to bring inspiring Canadian music across the border. I’m also delighted to feature music from my home country, performed by my fellow Spaniard, the extraordinary violinist María Dueñas. Above all, however, I can’t wait to see the bonds of this Orchestra grow even stronger. Touring enhances the personal and professional connections between players, enabling the entire ensemble to flourish creatively. There really is nothing else like it.”

Our audiences in Toronto will have the opportunity to preview the program at Roy Thomson Hall on February 8 and 9, in a concert entitled Gimeno Conducts Romeo and Juliet. Then, on February 11, the tour officially commences with our annual orchestra exchange with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (NACO). The American leg begins on February 13, as the Orchestra travels to New York City and performs at Carnegie Hall, which will mark the US Première of Samy Moussa’s Second Symphony. And we conclude the tour on February 14, when we visit Chicago, Toronto’s sister city, playing at the storied Symphony Centre for the first time in our history.

Happy Valentine’s Day, indeed!

OttawaFebruary 11

Exchange with National Arts Centre Orchestra

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New YorkFebruary 13

Return to Carnegie Hall

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ChicagoFebruary 14

Début at Symphony Centre

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Gustavo Gimeno, conductor
María Dueñas, violin

Samy Moussa: Symphony No. 2 (TSO Commission/USA Première)

Lalo: Symphonie espagnole for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 21

Prokofiev (compiled by G. Gimeno): Suite from Romeo and Juliet