Celebrate the most joyous season with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra as they hold the fourth concert of their 39th Concert Season: Switch on December 8, 2023, 7:30pm, at the Samsung Performing Arts Theater.
Dubbed Ode to Joy, the Concert IV program features Franz Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in A Major and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Op. 125 in D minor, under the baton of PPO music director and principal conductor Maestro Grzegorz Nowak.
Renowned pianist and former CCP president Raul Sunico takes center stage as he performs Liszt’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in A Major, a dazzling and virtuosic piece that highlights the composer’s inventive approach to the piano and his ability to integrate solo and orchestral parts fluidly.
Hailed for his “unusual gifts of lyricism and poetry,” Sunico has an illustrious international career as a concert pianist, orchestral soloist, and composer-arranger of Philippine music. A TOYM Awardee for Music in 1986, Sunico’s impact extends beyond performance. He is a music education advocate, textbook author, and former dean of the UST Conservatory of Music. With unique distinction like performing all four Rachmaninoff pianos concertos in a single evening, Sunic continues to contribute significantly to the world of classical music.
Experience the grandeur of Beethoven’s monumental Symphony No. 9, Op. 125 in D minor, with guest performers baritone Byeong-In Park, mezzo soprano Krissan Manikan-Tan, soprano Rachelle Gerodias, and tenor Arthur Espiritu.
The Beethoven piece has been known for its innovative use of a vocal quartet and a choir in the last movement, which includes the well-loved “Ode to Joy.” The PPO’s rendition features a 120-voice choir composed of singers from the CMU Consortium of Voices, Eastern Chamber Singers, Ateneo Chamber Singers, Novo Concertante Manila, and Kammerchor Manila, with chorus master and CCP trustee Jonathan Velasco.
A much-sought after choral conductor, clinician and adjudicator, Velasco and his choirs have won first prizes in major European choral competitions. He regularly adjudicates choral competitions in Europe and Asia, gives choral conducting workshops and coral clinics worldwide. In 2008, he was elected the first president of the Philippine Choral Directors Association. He currently conducts the Ateneo Chamber Singers. He represents the Philippines to the Interkultur World Choir Council.
Celebrating its 50th founding anniversary, the PPO is the country’s leading orchestra and is widely regarded as one of the top musical ensembles in the Asia-Pacific region. The PPO has premiered Filipino compositions and has featured works by foreign composers not yet performed in the Philippines. It continues to promote music appreciation through outreach concerts in schools, parishes, government agencies, and underserved communities in Metro Manila and different regions of the country.
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