Berkeley Symphony and their music director, Joana Carneiro deeply engage contemporary symphonic music in all its diversity. The amazing piano concerto of Gyögy Ligeti (1923-2006) still challenges performers and audience alike. The world premiere commission by 21-year-old John Adams’ protégé Dylan Mattingly, who befriended a Cabrillo Festival audience with his I was a Stranger this summer, will provide a contrasting idea of what “contemporary” music means. Then you can reflect on how different both of them are from Robert Schumann’s Symphony No. 2. The dynamic Israeli pianist Shai Wosner solos in the Ligeti.
Jeff Dunn is a freelance critic with a B.A. in music and a Ph.D. in geologic education. A composer of piano and vocal music, he is a member of the National Association of Composers, USA, a former president of Composers, Inc., and has served on the Board of New Music Bay Area. A photomontage enthusiast, he illustrates his own reviews.