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Prokofiev’s Fifth and Olga Neuwirth

Apr 18 - Apr 20

Prokofiev saw his Fifth Symphony as “glorifying the grandeur of the human spirit.” Thomas Søndergård, in his NY Phil debut, conducts the concerts, which open with Lili Boulanger’s cheerful ode to a spring morning. Olga Neuwirth’s Project 19 commission sets to music texts by Ariosto, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Friedrich Nietzsche, graffiti artists, and others, including Neuwirth herself.

Part of Project 19

Date / Time

Create-Your-Own Subscriptions for the 2023–24 season are available; purchase 3+ concerts and save at least 10% off single ticket prices. Plus, you’ll enjoy other great benefits, including no-fee ticket exchanges.


Wu Tsai Theater, David Geffen Hall



1 Hour 30 Minutes with Intermission

Program to Include

Program Notes

L. Boulanger

D’un matin de printemps

Olga Neuwirth

Keyframes for a Hippogriff – Musical Calligrams in memoriam Hester Diamond (US Premiere–New York Philharmonic Co-Commission, as part of Project 19, with Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation, the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, and BBC Radio 3)


Symphony No. 5


Thomas Søndergård Conductor

The 2023–24 season sees Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård begin his tenure as music director of the Minnesota Orchestra. In addition, he continues to serve as music director of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (RSNO), following six seasons as principal guest conductor. Between 2012 and 2018 he served as principal conductor of the BBC National Orchestra of Wales (BBC NOW), after stepping down as principal conductor and musical advisor of the Norwegian Radio Orchestra.

Learn more about Thomas Søndergård

Andrew Watts Countertenor

Few countertenors have pushed the boundaries of repertoire and sound more than Andrew Watts. A dramatic voice unlike any other, and extraordinary stagecraft and presence, make him a unique performer, not only of parts traditionally associated with the voice type, but also as a pioneer of 20th- and 21st-century repertoire. He is particularly associated with roles like Edgar in Aribert Reimann’s Lear, which he has performed at Hamburg Staatsoper, Opéra national de Paris, Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Munich’s Bavarian Staatsoper, and Teatro Real Madrid. 

Learn more about Andrew Watts

Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Dianne Berkun Menaker, director Chorus

Brooklyn Youth Chorus, led by founder and artistic director Dianne Berkun Menaker, is one of the most highly regarded ensembles in the country, and has stretched the artistic boundaries of the youth chorus. The chorus made its New York Philharmonic debut in 2002, in the World Premiere of John Adams’s On the Transmigration of Souls, the recording of which won three Grammy Awards. Brooklyn Youth Chorus has performed with acclaimed conductors including Jaap van Zweden, Alan Gilbert, Marin Alsop, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Gustavo Dudamel, Joe Hisaishi, Reinbert de Leeuw, and Lorin Maazel. The chorus has collaborated with an impressive range of organizations and artists including the London Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Kronos Quartet, International Contemporary Ensemble, David Byrne, The National, Arcade Fire, Elton John, and Barbra Streisand. Brooklyn Youth Chorus has developed an active commissioning program and collaborated with some of the most important composers of our time, including Caroline Shaw, Tania León, David Lang, John Adams, Julia Wolfe, Nico Muhly, Angélica Negrón, Bryce Dessner, Richard Reed Parry, Paola Prestini, Nathalie Joachin, Paul Moravec, Toshi Reagon, Alev Lenz, Anna Clyne, Aleksandra Vrebalov, and William Brittelle. Founded in 1992, Brooklyn Youth Chorus has served more than 10,000 students through its core after-school and public-school outreach programs. The chorus’s professional faculty teach a wide range of repertoire and styles using founding artistic director Dianne Berkun Menaker’s proven Cross-Choral Training method, emphasizing healthy and versatile vocal technique, music theory, sight-singing, and ear training. 

Learn more about Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Dianne Berkun Menaker, director


Lead support for Project 19 is provided by the Howard Gilman Foundation, the Donald A. Pels Charitable Trust, and Oscar L. Tang and H.M. Agnes Hsu-Tang.

These performances of Olga Neuwirth’s Keyframes for a Hippogriff are made possible with generous support from the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts.

The April 18 performance is supported by a generous bequest from Edna Mae and Leroy Fadem, loyal subscribers from 1977 to 2023. Additional generous support for this concert is provided by Leona Kern in memory of Ralph W. Kern.

Generous support for Project 19 is also provided by Arthur F. and Alice E. Adams Charitable Foundation; Sheree A. and Gerald L. Friedman; Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts; The Hauser Foundation; Daniel M. Healy; The Gerald L. Lennard Foundation; Margaret Morgan and Wesley Phoa; Kimberly V. Strauss, The Strauss Foundation; the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation; and an anonymous donor.

Project 19 is supported in part by a generous grant from the American Orchestras’ Futures Fund, a program of the League of American Orchestras made possible by funding from the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation.