James Fellenbaum

In 1953, Dmitri Shostakovich broke the "curse of the 9th" by composing his tenth symphony. Widely regarded as his "greatest" symphony, Shostakovich was finally free to compose as he wished, as Stalin had died earlier that year and, along with him, his oppressive regime, which greatly restricted composers (along with other artists and musicians) with the music that they could create. Hidden within the work is a musical depiction of Stalin and cryptograms of Shostakovich's own name, as well as that of a suspected girlfriend.

Pulitzer-Prize winning composer, Jennifer Higdon, is one of America's most frequently performed living composers. A Tennessee native, she has been commissioned by many of the world's leading orchestras, has won many awards and fellowships, and currently teaches composition at the Curtis Institute of Music. Ms. Higdon will be in residence at the University of Tennessee School of Music from February 17th through 23rd.

The Knoxville Symphony Orchestra will present a concert of Latin American music this Sunday afternoon at 2:30pm.  Resident conductor, James Fellanbaum, will lead the orchestra in a performance of music by Arturo Marquez, Aldemaro Romero, Aaron Copland, and Astor Piazzolla. As always, this Chamber Classics concert will be given at the Bijou Theatre in downtown Knoxville.

Learn more about the music, the composers, and the specific challenges of these pieces by listening to this interview.

The Knoxville Symphony Orchestra concludes its 80th season Thursday and Friday nights with a epic concert featuring music of Wagner, Beethoven, and Christopher Theofanidis.

Resident conductor, James Fellenbaum, will lead the orchestra in performances of Beethoven's Leonore Overture No.3, Christopher Theofanidis' "Dreamtime Ancestors" (TN premiere), and "The Ring: An Orchestral Adventure", a suite arranged by Henk de Vlieger, consisting of themes and music from Wagner's "Ring Cycle."