SPCO’s 2014-2015 season features big names, new home

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra has announced its 2014-2015 season, and one of the highlights is not a performance but a move.

In March 2015 the SPCO will begin performing in the newly completed concert hall at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts.

For the last 30 years, the SPCO has performed in the Ordway’s much larger “music theater,” which seats 1,900. The new concert hall will seat 1,100.

The new space will transform the concert experience for both musicians and audiences, according to Kyu-Young Kim, SPCO’s Principal Second Violin and Senior Director of Artistic Planning.

“The sound will be much more immediate,” said Kim. “You will be able to hear much more detail. And it will change the way we approach how we play. Rather than trying to fill a really large theater, we can go for maximum contrast and detail, which is what I think you really want from a chamber orchestra.”

To mark 30 years performing in the Ordway’s Music Theater, the SPCO will perform all nine Beethoven symphonies.

In addition, the SPCO has programmed Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos, Mahler’s Fourth Symphony, Haydn’s Surprise Symphony and three world premieres by Charles Wuorinen, Fred Lerdahl and Nicola Campogrande. Kim admits it’s an ambitious season.

“The amount of amazing music that we’re playing, the kinds of artists that we’re collaborating with, the kinds of opportunities that the orchestra has to really announce to the world how vibrant and exciting the SPCO can be — it’s all there in the programs and I think we’re excited to bring them to life,” said Kim.

Two new artistic partners with rising stars join the SPCO in the new season — violinist Patricia Kopatchinskaja and pianist Jeremy Denk.

The SPCO concerts will take place at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, as well as at several locations throughout the Twin Cities.

The season opens in September with performances of Beethoven’s Seventh and Eighth symphonies.