What's Happening at the Symphony

What's Your Music?: Guest artists

The San Diego Symphony heard from three upcoming guest artists and they shared with us why they're excited about their performances with the Symphony and what other concerts they’d love to attend this spring.


Bass-baritone Michael Sumel joins the Symphony this weekend for Puccini's Glorious Mass.Bass-baritone Michael Sumel joins the Symphony this weekend for Puccini's Glorious Mass

Tell us about “your music” at San Diego Symphony.

What’s my music? This will be my first time performing sacred music by Puccini. You can hear how integral the relationship between orchestra and voice is in a concert setting -- just as important as it is on the operatic stage. The full range of emotions is evident!












  Pianist Jan Lisiecki takes the stage in April for Ling Conducts Brahms.

What concert do you want to attend in the 2018/19 season at San Diego Symphony?

Joshua Bell Plays Bruch, April 14

What excites you about your choice?   

 One of my favorite things is experiencing the same music on two consecutive evenings - especially when programmed somewhat differently. I believe it is eye-opening and enriching. Therefore, I would gladly hear the Weber & Brahms once again (after my performances on April 12 & 13) in a different context, and of course be captivated by Joshua Bell's every note as he performs Bruch’s first Violin Concerto.

Tell us about “your music” at San Diego Symphony.

I’ll make my San Diego debut April 12 & 13 with the second piano concerto of Chopin. Chopin’s Concerto No. 2 is pure elegance and beauty, and it is always a joy to bring it alive along with wonderful musicians. This concerto is close to my heart.  I recorded it when I was 14 years old and that recording brought me worldwide attention. I believe it makes the piano speak and sing, and far exceed its usual lyrical capabilities.Collaboratively, it requires excellent musicianship from each individual in the orchestra, as well as formidable technique for the many instrumental solos. Ultimately, simplicity and purity must prevail.


Pianist Simon Trpceski plays Rachmaninoff to close out the season in May

Which concert in this season at San Diego Symphony would you recommend to someone who has never been to the Symphony?

I would recommend 3 concerts since the SDSO was clever enough to put the 3 most popular piano concertos So Grieg, Tchaikovsky or my concerts – Rachmaninov 2 for those who will have their first experience.

 Why would you choose these particular concerts?

Because of the magical melodies that will capture their hearts straightaway. It has proved true for many, many years now. And in the crazy time we live in, it should give even more effect, to the intelligent people who have decided to honor us at concerts. The process of producing those magical melodies should be even more captivating for them. So, enjoy the magic.

Tell us about “your music” at the San Diego Symphony.

Rach 2 was the choice of the orchestra. It is the second piece that I have played with an orchestra in my life. And being one of the most popular concertos, is a pure pleasure to play, due to its beautiful music. But on the other hand, this gives another sense of responsibility because people do have expectations. However, I am not pre-occupying my head with those thoughts because I can let myself indulge to the amazing source of inspiration that Rachmaninov had after his difficult depression period, which never ceases to amaze me each time I play it. It will be some time since I played it last time, so it will be a great refreshment for me as well.

On top of that, with a partner like conductor Cristian Macelaru, I am looking forward to the music making. It will be even more exciting because we have never performed it so far. We might add a bit of the Balkan flair, who knows! I am also very happy that I am going to experience the wonderful SDSO which people talk so highly about, and am honored that I was given the chance to close their season. Hopefully I will get a chance to “smell” the city. Everyone says it’s gorgeous!

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