May 23, 2023
SAN FRANCISCO, CA—On June 29–July 1, Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen and the San Francisco Symphony are joined by classical singer and Collaborative Partner Julia Bullock and the San Francisco Symphony Chorus for the final program of the Orchestra’s 2022–23 subscription season.
Salonen opens the program with the first San Francisco Symphony performances of Reena Esmail’s Black Iris. Named after the eponymous Georgia O’Keefe painting and inspired by the #MeToo movement, the melody of the piece is written as a “bandish,” a traditional Hindustani form upon which a musician can improvise. Esmail says, “The bandish serves as the ‘protagonist’ of [Black Iris]—a woman who is trying to navigate through a world filled with pitfalls, dead ends, dark turns—each time finding the way back to her own, individual, powerful voice.”
At the center of the program, Julia Bullock joins Salonen and the Symphony for a selection of songs by two prolific 20th-century American composers: Margaret Bonds and George Gershwin. The selections include Gershwin’s “Somebody from Somewhere,” originally written for the film Delicious; the popular “Summertime” from Porgy and Bess; and “Soon,” composed for the political satire musical Strike Up the Band. Bullock performs Bonds’ “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” and “Winter Moon,” both of which feature text from poems by Langston Hughes, Bonds’ close friend and frequent collaborator.
The San Francisco Symphony Chorus joins Salonen and the Symphony for Maurice Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé, written in 1909 for the Ballets Russes. Described by Ravel as a “choreographic symphony in three parts,” the work is based on the Greek pastoral myth of Daphnis and Chloé, as filtered through the late 16th-century French scholar, translator, and writer Jacques Amyot.
CALENDAR EDITORS, PLEASE NOTE:
Tickets for concerts at Davies Symphony can be purchased via sfsymphony.org or by calling the San Francisco Symphony Box Office at 415.864.6000.
Davies Symphony Hall is located at 201 Van Ness Avenue in San Francisco.
Health & Safety Information
Davies Symphony Hall is currently operating at full audience capacity. Based on the advice of the San Francisco Symphony’s Health and Safety Task Force, a face covering and vaccination against COVID-19 are strongly recommended but no longer required for entry into Davies Symphony Hall. These policies are subject to change. Visit sfsymphony.org/safety for the San Francisco Symphony’s complete up-to-date health and safety protocols.
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Esa-Pekka Salonen and Julia Bullock