Monday 23 May

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City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra
Mirga Grazinyté-Tyla
, conductor
Gabriela Montero, piano

Pëtr Il’ič Čajkovskij
Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23

Johannes Brahms
Symphony No. 3 in F Major, Op. 90

"It will be Gražinytė-Tyla who finally removes the concept of 'female conductor' from our vocabulary," wrote BBC Music Magazine in 2016, following the appointment of the then 29-year-old Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla as Music Director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO). After just one concert, her determined gaze and infectious enthusiasm persuaded the British orchestra, which – true to a tradition that seeks agreement between orchestra, management and audience when selecting a music director – once again chose a talent from the new generation. Just as it did with a very young Simon Rattle in 1980 and a still unknown Andris Nelsons in 2008.
From the outset, Gražinytė-Tyla immersed herself in the musical life of the orchestra and the city, building a relationship of trust that gave room to explore new repertoire: from symphonies by Polish composer Mieczysław Weinberg, chosen to inaugurate the collaboration with Deutsche Grammophon, to pieces by Raminta Šerkšnyte.

Gabriela Montero's spontaneity enhances her interpretations of the classical repertoire with an expressiveness that is never sentimental. In Lugano, the pianist will perform Tchaikovsky's Concerto No. 1. It is now 23 years since Montero won the Third Prize at the International Chopin Piano Competition that launched her international career. The pianist is also known for her desire to create a special feeling of complicity in the concert hall. At the end of her performances, she sometimes improvises on a theme suggested by the audience or the orchestra.