The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s 82nd Season

For 2017-18, Zubin Mehta shares a music world ‘Bigger Than Life.’

For the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s 82nd Season, Maestro Zubin Mehta is adding his personal touch to the programming. To share his world, in which “every day I am surrounded by the greatest works of art,” he has programmed more than 120 concerts, with a who’s who of the world’s most celebrated guest soloists and conductors.

Music has made his world “bigger than life,” he says, and from October 2017 through July 2018 he promises IPO audiences that, “the Israel Philharmonic and I will make ‘bigger than life’ part of your everyday life.”

Concerts are primarily held in the Charles F. Bronfman Auditorium’s Lowy Concert Hall in Tel Aviv, but 20 will be held in Haifa Auditorium, with ten in Jerusalem’s International Convention Center.

In addition to masterpieces by the world’s great composers, he will introduce lesser-known pieces worthy of discovery. Highlights include the world premiere of Lior Navok‘s IPO-commissioned “Light Paths” and a concert version of Strauss’ “Der Rosenkavalier,” conducted by Maestro Mehta and featuring sopranos Ann Petersen, Lenneke Ruiten, and Elisabeth Jansson, among others, in their IPO debuts.



Maestro Mehta will conduct an opening week of back-to-back concerts including Ravel’s “Daphnis and Chloe,” Richard Strauss’ “Ein Heldenleben,” and Schubert’s Ninth Symphony. Pianist Maria João Pires will join him on stage for Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto no. 3.”

At the October 14 concert, tabla player Zakir Hussein will join Mehta and Pires for the first IPO performance of Hussein’s “Tabla Concerto.” A particular highlight for Maestro Mehta, the performance commemorates 25 years of diplomatic relations between India and Israel.

“As a special treat,” he says, “I will be introducing you to a talented Israeli film composer, Amit Poznansky.”  Poznansky’s “Footnote, suite for orchestra” will also be part of the IPO’s tour to America in late October and early November (READ STORY).

“I am extremely honored and excited that my piece, ‘Footnote Suite,’ will be performed by the IPO under the baton of Maestro Zubin Mehta, at the opening of the orchestra’s 82nd Season,” Poznansky says. “It is truly a dream come true to be played alongside some of the greatest composers in classical music history, and I’m immensely grateful.”



When the IPO returns from America this Fall, guest conductor Pablo Heras-Casado (pictured) will be at the podium to close out the year with concerts featuring pianist Olga Scheps in her IPO debut. Also on the program will be the premiere of the Navok commission.

In the New Year, Murray Perahia will conduct Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 from the piano and then lead the IPO in Schumann’s Second Symphony. Vladimir Jurowski will conduct one of Mehta’s favorite Mahler symphonies, the Seventh, on a program that also features Marie-Elisabeth Hecker performing Haydn’s “Cello Concerto no. 1 in C major.”

The Rotterdam Philharmonic’s new chief conductor, Lahav Shani, will join violinist Christian Tetzlaff and IPO principal flutist Yossi Arnheim in concerti by Bach, Bartok and Mendelssohn. Shani is also scheduled to conduct Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony and Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony, and return as featured pianist when the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic’s Vasily Petrenko conducts violinist Renaud Capuçon and his cellist brother Gautier for Beethoven’s “Triple Concerto.”

The guest conductor-soloist pairings that fill the 2018 calendar also include Kirill Petrenko, Music Director of the Berlin Philharmonic, and pianist Yuja Wang; the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s Manfred Honeck with baritone Matthias Goerne; and the IPO’s Principal Guest Conductor Gianandrea Noseda with violinist David Garrett.

There will also be a concert, conducted by pianist Arie Vardi, featuring the best young pianists in the world. Among the “First Prize” artists are Maxim Lando, Harmony Zhu, and Yoav Levanon performing Bach’s Concerto in C minor for two pianos as well as Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto no. 2” and Rachmaninov’s “Piano Concerto no. 2.”



There will be much for chamber music fans, too, with 15 concerts featuring members of the Israel Philharmonic and special guests such as the Oblivion Sting Quartet, violinists Garrett and Tetzlaff, pianists Scheps and Rudolf Buchbinder, and many more.  One of the highlights of the series, on May 5, 2018, will be a special salute to the State of Israel’s 70th Anniversary.

The beloved family series “IPO for Kids” will offer numerous unforgettable programs including a “Life According to Lenny” on June 17, part of the two-year Leonard Bernstein Centennial. (Read ‘The Bernstein Benchmark’)

For more information on all the Seasonal Series, click here.