5 Classical Music Faces to Watch This Season

Conrad Tao
The New York Times

The classical music season sprawls over centuries and the entire globe, a dizzying array of performances that manages to include both multimillion-dollar productions in front of 4,000 spectators at the Metropolitan Opera and intimate electronic experiments at Issue Project Room in Brooklyn. A balanced cultural diet would include a bit of both, as well as generous helpings of the five artists featured here; we’re particularly looking forward to seeing what they’re up to in the months ahead. They’re musicians who unite virtuosic technique with boundless curiosity, creating new works and reshaping the way we hear old ones.

Conrad Tao made a humble Lincoln Center debut with a piano recital one Sunday morning last December, in front of a white-haired audience sipping coffee. But there was nothing sleepy about his performance: adventurous, agile and often electrifying as he navigated works both contemporary and classical. This season, the 24-year-old polymath is back, now as a composer with a much larger platform: the New York Philharmonic. In recent years, Mr. Tao has caught the attention and admiration of Jaap van Zweden, the Philharmonic’s new music director, who invited Mr. Tao to write a new work for the orchestra. The piece, “Everything Must Go,” has its premiere on Sept. 27 and is intended as a curtain-raiser for Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony. Mr. Tao will also perform at Lincoln Center’s Kaplan Penthouse  for the inaugural program of Nightcap, an afterparty-like Philharmonic initiative created with the violist and new-music specialist Nadia Sirota. And that’s not all: Mr. Tao will be busy with the score for “More Forever,” a new evening-length dance work Caleb Teicher is choreographing for his company. The Guggenheim Museum’s Works & Process series will host a preview in October, ahead of the dance’s premiere at the museum in January. 
Read the full review here