Sinfonica De Galicia Spotlights Two IMG Artists Debuts in Strauss and Shostakovich

10 Apr 2024

Spain’s Galicia Symphony Orchestra sees two IMG Artists take the stage for their subscription concerts this week, both making their debut appearances with the orchestra, in concerts at the Palacio de la Ópera de A Coruña on Friday 12 and Saturday 13 April.

In-demand conductor Jonathon Heyward’s programme opens with Musical America’s 2023 Composer of the Year, GRAMMY-winning Jessie Montgomery’s Records from a Vanishing City. British soprano Claire Booth sings Richard Strauss’ much beloved Four Last Songs, and the evening concludes with Shostakovich’s powerful and turbulent 10th symphony. More information and tickets are available here.

Jonathon Heyward is forging a career as one of the most exciting conductors on the international scene. He currently serves as Music Director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, has recently closed his tenure as Chief Conductor of the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, and will become Renée and Robert Belfer Music Director of Lincoln Center’s Summer Orchestra in summer 2024. Recent and future guest conducting highlights include debuts and re-invitations with the London Philharmonic and London Symphony Orchestras, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, The Hallé in Manchester, National Symphony Orchestra in Dublin, the Danish National Symphony, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Brussels Philharmonic, MDR-Leipzig Symphony, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester, and the New York Philharmonic; the Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, Seattle, Dallas, and St Louis symphonies; and the Minnesota Orchestra.

“If you could build the perfect Baltimore Symphony Orchestra maestro in a lab” raved the Baltimore Sun, “they might look a lot like Jonathon Heyward…he is a wonderful conductor – developing an instant simpatico with the orchestra and earning praise from The Washington Post for, among other things, ‘coaxing wonderfully responsive playing from across the strings.’ The world is taking notice…”

“An actor-singer who can raise the dramatic heat as soon as she enters the stage” (Opera Now), “that most questing, resourceful and intelligent of sopranos” (Daily Telegraph), British soprano Claire Booth has been widely acclaimed for her “radiant, rapturous, wonderfully nuanced performances” and voice of “piercing purity [and] luscious richness” (The Scotsman). She is renowned for her breadth of repertoire, and for the vitality and musicianship that she brings to the operatic stage and concert platform, with a versatility that encompasses repertoire spanning from Monteverdi and Handel, through Rossini, Berg and Britten, to a fearless commitment to the music of the present day.

Booth and Heyward previously joined forces for the Strauss songs in Germany earlier this season, prompting acclaim from critics and audience alike:

“This work is a significant challenge for every soprano. In Claire Booth we were gifted an internationally sought-after singer who knows how to combine musical sensitivity with dramatic presence. She managed to assert herself against a fullness of sound […] this interpretation was fully in line with the composer’s intentions.” – Neue Westfalische

“The British soprano Claire Booth captured the dramatic mood of the songs excellently as an “acting singer”. She masterfully understood how to express the lyrical beauty of the songs. Vibrant shine and rapturous top notes with impressive passion captivated the audience. Her voice is characterized by an extraordinary clarity and warmth that crowned the orchestral sound and enraptured the listener. Thanks to her excellent technique, she was able to present the fine nuances and melodic diversity of the work at the highest level. Her voice merged with the orchestral sound and became an instrument itself.” – Lippische Landeszeitung

Photo Credit: Claire Booth – Sven Arnstein; Jonathon Heyward – Laura Thiesbrummel