Marin Alsop to Conduct in Havana,October 9

Marin-Alsop_2629510bHAVANA, Oct. 8  On Friday, American conductor Marin Alsop will lead the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra in a concert in the Plaza de la Catedral in Old Havana, celebrating the 500th anniversary of the founding of the Cuban capital.

Chinese pianist Lang Lang and a major figure of Afro-Cuban jazz, Cucho Valdes will be soloists in the concert, which will include music of Gershwin, Tchaikovsky, Elgar, James P. Johnson and Ernesto Lecuona.

Earlier this year as a sign of the thaw in relations between Cuba and the United States, the Minnesota Orchestra led by Osmo Vanska performed in Havana. It should not perhaps be too surprising that Marin Alsop is the next major American conductor to travel to Havana.

Although she has been the music director of the Baltimore Symphony since 2006, she is also the music director of the Sao Paulo State Symphony Orchestra in Brazil, and her contract with that orchestra has recently been extended to the end of 2019.

On Symphony @ 7 on Thursday, we’ll hear Marin Alsop conduct the Royal Scottish National Orchestra in one of her first recordings made back in 2000 for Naxos of Samuel Barber’s Souvenirs Ballet Suite. I’ll also have the Kansas City Symphony led by Michael Stern in a new recording of the Organ Symphony of Camille Saint-Saens. Join me here on Classical 101.

Back in 2012, Marin Alsop conducted the Sao Paulo Symphony at the Proms in London: