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Autumn is here for the Symphony Orchestra of India

Russian conductor Alexander Lazarev, who spent 22 years with the Bolshoi Theatre, makes his India debut with the SOI this week.

mumbai Updated: Sep 04, 2018 17:41 IST
Jayati Bhola
Jayati Bhola
Hindustan Times
NCPA,Symphony orchestra,SOI
Alexden lazarev conducts the Symphony Orchestra of India during a rehearsal at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Mumbai. (Bhushan Koyande / HT Photo)

SOI Autumn Season 2018
  • WHERE: National Centre for the Performing Arts; NCPA Marg, Nariman Point, Mumbai
  • WHEN: September 4 to 16
  • Ticket prices start at ₹500; tickets are available online

“I’ve been to 50 countries to conduct orchestras but I’ve never been to India and that’s what makes this trip so special and important for me,” says Alexander Lazarev, the Russian conductor who spent 22 years with the Bolshoi Theatre and is set to make his India debut with the Symphony Orchestra of India (SOI) this week.

Lazarev, 73, rose to the position of chief conductor and artistic director of the Bolshoi Theatre — posts he held simultaneously for eight years — from 1987 to 1995. During that time, he also founded the Ensemble of Soloists, which he says focused on “spreading the music by both Soviet and foreign composers”.

From September 4 to 16, he will lead the Symphony Orchestra of India at the National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA), Nariman Point, as they celebrate the Autumn Season with compositions such as Wagner’s Prelude to Act I: Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (The Master Singers of Nuremberg), Tchaikovsky’s Orchestral Suite No 3, and Bloch’s soaring, and rarely performed violin concerto.

Also performing this season are Israeli violinist Nurit Stark, Russian pianist Alexei Volodin, and Bulgarian harpist Daniela Iolkicheva.

“It’s essential that we curate international acts and get them to come and play with the SOI. It gives them a new audience and at the same time, we are matching steps with world theatres and orchestras,” said Khushroo Suntook, NCPA chairman and founder of the SOI.

“Having Lazarve here is wonderful. He does exactly what a conductor should do; make the orchestra believe they can trust him to make them sound better under his guidance,” said Zane Dalal, associate music director for the SOI. “The audience will be able to see and hear that connection.”

First Published: Sep 04, 2018 17:41 IST