Taipei Symphony Orchestra inks new deal with conductor Eliahu Inbal

04/19/2022 09:56 PM
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Conductor Eliahu Inbal (front, right) rehearses with Taipei Symphony Orchestra Monday. CNA photo April 18, 2022
Conductor Eliahu Inbal (front, right) rehearses with Taipei Symphony Orchestra Monday. CNA photo April 18, 2022

Taipei, April 19 (CNA) The Taipei Symphony Orchestra (TSO) announced Monday it had extended the contract of Chief Conductor Eliahu Inbal for another three years to 2025.

Despite program disruptions caused by COVID-19, the 86-year-old Israel-born Inbal, who took up his current post in August 2019, just completed his fourth quarantine in Taiwan and will lead the group in five upcoming concerts, the TSO said at a press conference.

These five concerts include the final two of the 10 symphonies by Gustav Mahler, which Inbal told the press conference was part of his plans for the orchestra to expand its repertoire and further build the depth of its performances.

The last two pieces to conclude the group's Mahler cycles are Symphony No. 9 and Symphony No. 10, which will be performed at the National Concert Hall in Taipei on April 22 and May 21, respectively, according to the orchestra.

The TSO said it would play a version of the unfinished Symphony No. 10 completed by Deryck Cooke.

June 22: Conductor Eliahu Inbal to leave Taipei Symphony Orchestra

Speaking about his plans for the orchestra for the next three years, Inbal said an opera production of Otello was being planned.

"It's good also to have a cycle," he said. "The cycles, they are the best way to educate not only orchestra but also the public."

TSO General Director Sung Wei-te (宋威德) said that under Inbal's tutelage the orchestra had "learned a lot," contributing to a richer performance from the string section, and smoother playing from the wind section.

In addition to the two concerts of Mahler's symphonies, Inbal will conduct another two concerts, featuring pieces including Maurice Ravel's Rapsodie Espagnole and Maurice Ravel's "Daphnis et Chloé" Suite No. 1 & 2 at the National Concert Hall on April 29 in Taipei and the National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts on May 1.

The April 29 concert will also feature Max Bruch's Scottish Fantasy with guest violinist William Wei (魏靖儀), while pianist Gwhyneth Chen (陳毓襄) will perform Sergey Prokofiev's Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major with the group in Kaohsiung, according to the orchestra.

Photo courtesy of TSO
Photo courtesy of TSO

Inbal will also conduct a concert scheduled on May 11 at the National Concert Hall, performing Edward Elgar's Cello Concerto in E Minor with guest cellist Victor Coo (高炳坤), and Dmitri Shostakovich's Symphony No. 11 titled "The Year 1905," the group added.

Tickets to the concerts are available through the OpenTix ticketing service.

(By Chao Ching-yu and Kay Liu)

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