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Gershwin's Concerto

Pianist Xiayin Wang and guest conductor Anu Tali

November 30 — December 2, 8:00 p.m.Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall

Anu Tali, guest conductor
Xiayin Wang, piano
Pacific Symphony


SMETANA: The Moldau
GERSHWIN: Concerto in F
DVOŘÁK: Symphony No. 7


Preview Talk at 7 p.m. with host Alan Chapman. Doors open at 6:45 p.m.

“Many persons had thought that the Rhapsody in Blue was only a happy accident…Well, I went out, for one thing, to show them that there was plenty more where that had come from,” said George Gershwin himself. Widely considered Gershwin’s most classical piece, his Concerto in F represents the perfect blend between the rhythmic liberties of jazz fused with classical roots.

“Xiayin Wang is jaw-droppingly impressive” —Gramophone

Enjoy image magnification on our big screens during the concert for a closer look at the artists!

Listen to this:

  • The symphonic poem “The Moldau” is a landscape on water, the listener put right in the boat with a painter’s eye view. We begin at the springs of the mighty river and travel through backwaters, the main current and rapids, through woods, fields and meadows, where peasants dance at a wedding. The melodies are flowing and folksy.

Program Notes

Learn more about the music in the program notes.

Anu Tali

Guest Artist

Anu Tali

Described by the Herald Tribune as “charismatic, brilliant, energetic,” Anu Tali is one of the most intriguing young conductors on the international scene today, belonging to a new generation of artists who are constantly searching for fresh musical ideas. In August 2013, Tali became Music Director of the Sarasota Orchestra in Florida. Alongside her duties in Sarasota, highlights of the current season include her debut with the Finnish National Opera and with the Manhattan School of Music Orchestra as well as re-engagements with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the Bochumer and Duisburger Symphonikern. 

She continues in her role as Chief Conductor of the Nordic Symphony Orchestra, which she founded in 1997 together with her twin sister Kadri Tali, to develop cultural contacts between Estonia and Finland and to unite musicians from around the world. Today the Nordic Symphony Orchestra has members from fifteen countries, featuring musicians from some of the world’s leading orchestras. 

Born in Estonia, Anu Tali began her musical career as a pianist, graduating at the Tallinn Conservatory in 1991. She then trained as a conductor at the Estonian Academy of Music with Kuno Areng, Toomas Kapten and Roman Matsow. From 1998 to 2000 she studied at the St Petersburg State Conservatory with Ilya Musin and later with Leonid Kortchmar and Jorma Panula.

Xiayin Wang

Guest Artist

Xiayin Wang

Pianist Xiayin Wang, an artist of keen musicality and sweeping virtuosity, has brought audiences to their feet with playing in the grand Romantic tradition. Having made numerous celebrated recordings and performed throughout the world, from New York’s Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, to music centers in South America, Europe, and Asia, she excites music lovers and critics alike with her impressive artistry.

In November 2016, Wang released her most recent recording of Alberto Ginastera’s Piano Concertos Nos. 1 and 2 with the BBC Philharmonic and their Music Director Juanjo Mena, celebrating the centennial anniversary of the composer’s birth. As a successful recording artist, her series of discs for Chandos Records has drawn critical international attention with Gramophone calling them “four out of four superb discs in succession.” Her recordings of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Sonatas (2014) were lauded for “flawless” (BBC Music Magazine) technique and “awesome clarity and poise” (Gramophone, Editor’s Choice for both Rachmaninoff discs), and her disc of American Piano Concertos (2013) was crowned disc of the month by MusicWeb International.

Wang began piano studies at the age of five, completed her studies at the Shanghai Conservatory and garnered an enviable record of first prize awards and special honors for her performances throughout China. She came to New York in 1997 and holds bachelor’s, master’s and professional studies degrees from the Manhattan School of Music.