Fifteen months after its last full concert, the Nashville Symphony has announced it will once again take the stage at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. And that return comes with appropriate fanfare.
The first notes the symphony plays all together will be Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man, followed by Joan Tower’s Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman.
But it’s not just a return. It’s the start of the orchestra’s most diverse season yet, including composers Jessie Montgomery, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Florence Price. The orchestra will also share the stage with Ballet Folklórico de México, and two participants in its Accelerando Program, which offers mentorship, instruction and performance experiences for students from ethnic communities that are currently underrepresented in orchestras. Composer Lab alumnus Brian Raphael Nabors also returns with a newly composed piece.
Local artists feature prominently in the season. Nashville Ballet will join the orchestra for a performance of Igor Stravinsky’s Firebird alongside Copland’s Billy the Kid. Kip Winger brings his Symphony No. 1. Viola section member Christopher Farrell’s new work is a commission in honor of the orchestra’s milestone 75th season. And organist Andrew Risinger will perform a concerto by Francis Poulenc.
The Symphony Chorus makes its return as well, after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention specifically cited choirs as a safe activity for the vaccinated — but they’ll take some extra time to ensure safety and allow singers, who have mostly been unable to gather, time to rehearse. So Handel’s Messiah, which features a choir, will be moved from its usual Christmas season to April.
The Nashville Symphony’s 75th anniversary season will begin the weekend of Sept. 16.
Correction: This story originally misstated the title of a musical work by Joan Tower. It is Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman, not Fanfare for the Common Woman.