Four Amazing Violinists Guest with the SLSO in the 2020/2021 Season

Four violinists will join the SLSO in the 2020/2021 season for thrilling performances, including (clockwise from top left): Artist-in-Residence Nicola Benedetti, Hilary Hahn, Leila Josefowicz, and Simone Porter.

For his second year as the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra’s Music Director, Stéphane Denève invited some of his friends and collaborators—who happen to be some of the world’s greatest artists—to come to St. Louis and work with the SLSO. As a result, the 2020/2021 season is one packed with the world’s most sought-after musical talent. Subscriptions to your SLSO guarantee thrilling musical experience at each performance, anchored by the SLSO and the fantastic guest artist line-up.

Here are the violinists who will set fire to the strings in the 20/21 season:

Nicola Benedetti

“Rising star” just doesn’t quite fit as a description for Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti. She’s been everywhere and played with many of the world’s leading orchestras. She spends countless hours devoted to her foundation to connect children to classical music and demonstrates ferocious commitment to young musicians by playing alongside them regularly. Oh, and did we mention she just won a Grammy Award? Stéphane selected this musical ambassador as the SLSO’s Artist-in-Residence for the 20/21 season. She’ll play Szymanowski’s Violin Concerto No. 2 and the St. Louis premiere of Wynton Marsalis’ Violin Concerto—a piece written specifically for her that won her that Grammy. Experience Benedetti’s golden tone and genuine warmth for yourself in October 2020 and February 2021.

Leila Josefowicz

Violinist Leila Josefowicz is no stranger to the SLSO. She’s been a regular guest artist since her debut with the orchestra in 1994. Josefowicz has also recorded multiple works of John Adams with the SLSO—his Violin Concerto and Scheherazade.2 (which was nominated for a Grammy). A musical rebel, she’s not afraid to tackle the newest and most difficult violin concerti, performing with the SLSO over the years works for violin by John Adams, Thomas Adès, Steven Mackey, and Esa-Pekka Salonen. This season, she teams up with conductor Jun Märkl on a program about musical discovery. This time, the Grammy-nominated violinist will perform the U.S. premiere of a new violin concerto by Scottish composer Helen Grime on October 30-November 1, 2020.

Hilary Hahn

If you’re familiar with the violin, you’re likely familiar with Hilary Hahn—one of the world’s greatest and most well-known violin players. Whether it’s her work in film (see The Village, The Deep Blue Sea, or The Sea), her extensive recording portfolio, or her work with composers of today (Jennifer Higdon, Lera Auerbach, Edgar Meyer), she is simply one of the most sought-after musicians of her generation. She makes a long-awaited return to the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra on opening weekend, September 19-20, to perform Sibelius’ Violin Concerto, a concerto first performed by Maud Powell in a time when men dominated the musical landscape. She’ll play in Powell Hall for the first time in 17 years.

Simone Porter

An emerging artist, violinist Simone Porter already boasts an impressive list of conductors with whom she has worked: the SLSO’s Stéphane Denève, Gustavo Dudamel, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Donald Runnicles, and Yannick Nézet-Séguin. On January 15-16, 2021, she’ll add Leonard Slatkin, the SLSO’s Conductor Laureate, to that list. In a program inspired by Americana, she’ll perform Barber’s Violin Concerto, with its virtuosic finale.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Other artists performing with the SLSO include pianists Leif Ove Andsnes, Emanuel Ax, Stephen Hough, Kirill Gerstein, Hélène Grimaud, Alice Sara Ott, Beatrice Rana, and Lise de la Salle. Christine Goerke, Tamara Mumford, Janai Brugger, Gaëlle Arquez, Jennifer Johnson Cano, and Siobhan Stagg all lend their staggering voices to performances of choral masterworks throughout the season.


Subscriptions are on sale now. The SLSO offers curated packages and create-your-own series, perfect for tailoring your SLSO experience to your musical tastes—so you could build a package to hear all these remarkable guests. Visit slso.org or call the Box Office at 314-534-1700.

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