The Kennedy Center

National Symphony Orchestra

Featured this season 2

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National Symphony Orchestra: Slatkin conducts Bernstein / Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring

Nov 2 - Nov 4, 2017

Former NSO Music Director Leonard Slatkin leads two Bernstein compositions: the lively fanfare Slava! A Political Overture and Songfest, a tribute to American perspectives and writers. He concludes with Stravinsky's legendary ballet score The Rite of Spring.

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DECLASSIFIED: Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring with the National Symphony Orchestra / Leonard Slatkin, conductor

Fri, Nov 3, 2017, 9:00 PM

Immerse yourself in Russian regalement with a unique concert program featuring dynamic multimedia, audience interaction, and Stravinsky's notorious ballet score. Come early and stay late for even more activities related to the evening's all-Russian theme. 

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National Symphony Orchestra: Noseda conducts Beethoven’s “Eroica”

Nov 9 - Nov 11, 2017

Gianandrea Noseda showcases three pieces that reach into the past and feature Baroque styles in distinct and innovative ways: Webern's Passacaglia, Dallapiccola's Partita, and Beethoven's "Eroica" Symphony.

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Notes of Honor: NSO Salutes the Military: Veterans Day Concert

Fri, Nov 10, 2017, 7:00 PM

The National Symphony Orchestra, in collaboration with the USO of Metropolitan Washington-Baltimore, is proud to present a free concert for all service members and their families.


National Symphony Orchestra: Noseda conducts Gershwin’s An American in Paris

Nov 16 - Nov 19, 2017

Take a tour of Europe through works heavily inspired by Italy, France, and Spain. Gianandrea Noseda explores Respighi's Fontane di Roma (Fountains of Rome), Chausson's Poème, Gershwin's An American in Paris, and Falla's The Three-Cornered Hat Suites No. 1 & 2.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Yuja Wang plays Prokofiev / Rachmaninoff's Symphonic Dances

Nov 30 - Dec 2, 2017

Gianandrea Noseda examines three composers through the lens of their lives away from home. Britten's Matinées musicales and Rachmaninoff's Symphonic Dances highlight pieces written in America, while soloist Yuja Wang conquers Prokofiev's Paris-penned Piano Concerto No. 5.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Handel's Messiah

Dec 14 - Dec 17, 2017

Join the NSO, gifted singers, and a heavenly chorus for this holiday tradition! Experience all of the hope, redemption, and grace of Handel's cherished Messiah in the festively decorated Concert Hall.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Bernstein's "The Age of Anxiety" / Ravel's Bolero

Jan 11 - Jan 13, 2018

Yutaka Sado leads a tribute of works composed or conducted by Bernstein, with whom Sado studied conducting. The program includes Rossini's Overture to The Thieving Magpie, Bernstein's "The Age of Anxiety" featuring pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet, Tchaikovsky's Francesca da Rimini, and Ravel's Boléro.

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BEN FOLDS PRESENTS. Part of the National Symphony Orchestra's DECLASSIFIED concert series.

Fri, Jan 12, 2018, 9:00 PM

Ben Folds presents another in his special series of unique live concert experiences, produced by Folds, that feature artists from multiple genres sharing the spotlight with the NSO to perform their hits, as well as new music. Featured artists will be announced at a later date.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Eschenbach conducts Schumann & Brahms / Josefowicz plays Knussen

Jan 25 - Jan 27, 2018

Christopher Eschenbach conducts Brahms's Variations on a Theme by Haydn and Schumann's "Rhenish" Symphony, both linked by religious themes. The program also features violinist Leila Josefowicz in Oliver Knussen's Violin Concerto as part of Josefowicz's Kennedy Center residency.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Rachmaninoff's Second Piano Concerto / Tchaikovsky's The Tempest

Feb 1 - Feb 3, 2018

Pianist Kirill Gerstein shines in Rachmaninoff's charged Piano Concerto No. 2 on an all-Russian program. Conductor Hannu Lintu also pays homage to Tchaikovsky through the composer's The Tempest and Stravinsky's The Fairy's Kiss, a work written in Tchaikovsky's memory.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Shostakovich's Ninth Symphony / Gerhardt plays Bloch

Feb 8 - Feb 10, 2018

Fabien Gabel conducts a program inspired by nonmusical sources, from a heartbreaking love poem to World War II politics to the book of Ecclesiastes. He leads Dukas's Overture to Polyeucte, Bloch's Schelomo featuring cellist Alban Gerhardt, Rachmaninoff's The Rock, and Shostakovich's Symphony No. 9.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Jankowski conducts Brahms's First Symphony / Jackiw plays Bruch

Feb 22 - Feb 24, 2018

Known for his skill with the core classical repertoire, conductor Marek Janowski leads Bruch's electrifying First Violin Concerto featuring the NSO debut of Stefan Jackiw. The program also includes Brahms's Beethoven-influenced Symphony No. 1.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Runnicles conducts Mahler's Tenth Symphony

Mar 1 - Mar 3, 2018

Donald Runnicles returns to lead Mahler's Symphony No. 10, a moving work sketched in the wake of his daughter's death and completed after his own. This posthumous entry continues the NSO's multi-season Mahler exploration.

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National Symphony Orchestra: John Adams's The Gospel According to the Other Mary

Mar 8 - Mar 10, 2018

In celebration of John Adams's 70th birthday year, Gianandrea Noseda conducts The Gospel According to the Other Mary, Adams's expansive composition for chorus, soloists, and orchestra depicting Jesus's final weeks as told from the unique perspective of Mary Magdalene.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Bronfman plays Brahms

Mar 15 - Mar 18, 2018

Gianandrea Noseda leads Yefim Bronfman in Brahms's monumental Piano Concerto No. 2 in this program that also explores the spirit of dance in Germany, Hungary, and the Czech Republic through dance music by Brahms, R. Strauss, Kodály and Dvorák.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Noseda conducts Verdi's Requiem

Mar 22 - Mar 24, 2018

Gianandrea Noseda conducts Verdi's Requiem, a spectacular masterpiece composed in memory of an Italian poet and novelist whom Verdi deeply admired. Pairing striking trumpet solos with sweeping symphonic and choral moments, Requiem is a legendary musical experience.

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National Symphony Orchestra: A Portrait & a Frame: Works by Stravinsky, Mozart & W.F. Bach

Apr 19 - Apr 21, 2018

Gianandrea Noseda presents a portrait of Stravinsky's complex artistry through his Symphonies of Wind Instruments and his Violin Concerto featuring Leila Josefowicz. Mozart's Adagio and Fugue in F minor and Symphony No. 39 bookend the portrait with a classical frame.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Elder conducts Strauss's Ein Heldenleben / Haydn's Symphony No. 80

May 3 - May 4, 2018

Sir Mark Elder offers a musical biography of Richard Strauss, pairing his triumphant and famously autobiographical Ein Heldenleben with his earlier, more intimate Serenade for 13 Wind Instruments. The program also includes an interlude of Haydn's Symphony No. 80.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Elder conducts Vaughan Williams's "Pastoral Symphony" / Ravel's Ma mère l'oye

May 10 - May 12, 2018

For his second week with the NSO, Sir Mark Elder unites the works of three First World War-era composers and contemporaries. The program includes Butterworth's A Shropshire Lad Rhapsody, Vaughan Williams's "A Pastoral Symphony," and Ravel's Mother Goose and Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Noseda conducts Brahms's Fourth Symphony

May 17 - May 19, 2018

In his final concerts of the season, Gianandrea Noseda leads a program unified by J.S. Bach. The program includes Berio's take on Bach's unfinished Contrapunctus XIX, plus two more Bach-influenced works: Berg's Violin Concerto featuring James Ehnes and Brahms's Symphony No. 4.

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DECLASSIFIED: Selections from Stravinsky & Mozart with the National Symphony Orchestra / Gianandrea Noseda, conductor

Fri, May 18, 2018, 9:00 PM

Gianandrea Noseda, the NSO's new music director, leads an abbreviated DECLASSIFIED concert featuring selected Bach works with violinist James Ehnes. The evening will also include pre- and post-concert activities.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Eschenbach conducts Mendelssohn's "Italian" Symphony / Walton's Viola Concerto

Jun 7 - Jun 9, 2018

The first of Christoph Eschenbach's trio of programs concluding the NSO's classical season includes R. Strauss' Potpourri from The Silent Woman and Mendelssohn's "Italian" Symphony. The program also features NSO Principal Viola Daniel Foster in Walton's Viola Concerto.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Eschenbach conducts Beethoven's Fourth Symphony / Mozart's Oboe Concerto

Jun 12 - Jun 13, 2018

Christoph Eschenbach's second program of his late-season trio includes Beethoven's splendid Symphony No. 4, Mozart's fascinating Oboe Concerto featuring NSO Principal Oboe Nick Stovall, and overtures to Rossini's William Tell and Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream.

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National Symphony Orchestra: Eschenbach conducts Haydn's "Oxford" Symphony / R. Strauss's First Horn Concerto

Jun 15 - Jun 16, 2018

Christoph Eschenbach concludes the NSO's classical season with a program of Haydn's exuberant "Oxford" Symphony, plus Mozart's A Little Night Music, Wagner's Prelude to The Mastersingers of Nuremberg, and R. Strauss' Horn Concerto No. 1 featuring NSO Principal Horn Abel Pereira.

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BEN FOLDS PRESENTS. Part of the National Symphony Orchestra's DECLASSIFIED concert series.

Fri, Jun 29, 2018, 9:00 PM

Ben Folds presents another in his special series of unique live concert experiences, produced by Folds, that feature artists from multiple genres sharing the spotlight with the NSO to perform their hits, as well as new music. Featured artists will be announced at a later date.

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