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Renée Fleming and Rod Gilfry Sing Kevin Puts

May 16 - May 18
CYO
Renée Fleming and Rod Gilfry sing Kevin Puts’s The Brightness of Light, a work created for them and based on letters between painter Georgia O’Keeffe and photographer Alfred Stieglitz​​. The NY Phil Chorus joins the Orchestra for Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé, a hypnotic dreamscape and one of the composer’s most impressively orchestrated scores, which Juanjo Mena conducts​ ​complete​​​.  

Date / Time

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Location

Wu Tsai Theater, David Geffen Hall

Directions

Program

Kevin Puts

The Brightness of Light (New York Premiere)

Ravel

Daphnis et Chloé (complete)

Artists

Juanjo Mena Conductor

Juanjo Mena began his conducting career in his native Spain as artistic director of the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra in 1999. His uncommon talent was soon recognized internationally, leading to appointments as principal guest conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic and chief guest conductor of the Orchestra del Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa. In 2011 he was named chief conductor of the BBC Philharmonic, which he led for seven seasons, taking the orchestra on tours of Europe and Asia and conducting annual televised concerts at the Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms. May 2023 marked Juanjo Mena’s final performances as principal conductor of the Cincinnati May Festival, the longest-running choral festival in North America, concluding his pivotal six-year tenure at the organization, during which he expanded the commissioning of new works and put the community at the heart of the festival. 

Learn more about Juanjo Mena

Renée Fleming Soprano

Renée Fleming is one of the most highly acclaimed singers of our time. Honored with five Grammy Awards and the US National Medal of Arts, she has sung for momentous occasions, ranging from the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony to the Super Bowl. A Goodwill Ambassador for Arts and Health for the World Health Organization, in December 2023 she was awarded the Kennedy Center Honor.

Learn more about Renée Fleming

Rod Gilfry Baritone

American baritone Rod Gilfry — two-time Grammy award nominee, singer, and actor — has performed in all of the world’s music capitals. Best-known as an opera singer, he is also an acclaimed recitalist and concert artist, and appears frequently in musical theater classics.

Learn more about Rod Gilfry

New York Philharmonic Chorus | Malcolm J. Merriweather, Director Chorus

The New York Philharmonic Cho­rus is an ensemble of New York–based, profes­sional vocalists that was established to mark the Orchestra’s return to the transformed David Geffen Hall in the 2022–23 season. The Chorus made its debut in the hall’s two Inaugural Galas, both conducted by Music Director Jaap van Zweden, in which it sang selections by Bernstein and Handel as well as Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and the World Premiere of Angélica Negrón’s You Are the Prelude, which the NY Phil commissioned for the occasion. The Chorus returned later in the season for Adolphus Hailstork’s Done Made My Vow, A Ceremony and the New York Premiere of John Luther Adams’s Become Desert. In the 2023–24 season Malcolm J. Merriweather again directs the New York Philharmonic Chorus, preparing the ensemble for Holst’s The Planets, in November; Émigré — composed by Aaron Zigman and lyrics by Mark Campbell and Brock Walsh — in February–March; and van Zweden’s season-concluding performances of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Resurrection. Grammy-nominated conductor and baritone Malcolm J. Merriweather — who has prepared the New York Philharmonic Chorus for appearances with the Orchestra since the choir was founded — is music director of The Dessoff Choirs. He also serves as an associate professor at Brooklyn College and on the faculty at Manhattan School of Music. He has conducted ensembles in venues that include Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Madison Square Garden in New York City, as well as Westminster Abbey and at the Vatican before Pope Francis. His repertoire ranges from J.S. Bach to the world premiere recording of Margaret Bonds’s The Ballad of the Brown King (AVIE Records). As a baritone, Merriweather studied with Rita Shane, has appeared as soloist throughout the United States, and has premiered dozens of contemporary solo works. He was a fellowship recipient at Tanglewood and has earned degrees from Eastman School of Music, Manhattan School of Music, and Syracuse University.

Learn more about New York Philharmonic Chorus | Malcolm J. Merriweather, Director