Catch Boston Symphony's Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina Return this Weekend

Tuesday November 22, 2022

Anna Rakitina and Alexandre Kantorow perform at Boston Symphony Hall in April 2022. (Hilary Scott photo)
Anna Rakitina and Alexandre Kantorow perform at Boston Symphony Hall in April 2022. (Hilary Scott photo)  

BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina returns to the BSO podium, along with Israeli pianist Inon Barnatan for Rachmaninoff's virtuosic "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini," on a program with the orchestral suite from Elena Langer's opera "Figaro Gets a Divorce" and Mussorgsky's familiar "Pictures at an Exhibition" in Ravel's masterful orchestration,

Having earned consistent acclaim for her appearances with the BSO at Symphony Hall (April 2022) and Tanglewood (summer 2021 and 2022), BSO Assistant Conductor Anna Rakitina returns to lead the BSO in a program that begins with the orchestral suite drawn from Russian-born British composer Elena Langer's 2016 opera "Figaro Gets a Divorce"—featuring music that is by turns mysterious, songful, and jazzy. Inon Barnatan is the soloist in Rachmaninoff's final work for piano and orchestra, the "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini." Structured as a set of 24 variations on the last of Paganini's Caprices for solo violin, the work contains Rachmaninoff's most famous melody, the ultra-romantic 18th variation. Ending the concert is Mussorgsky's colorful "Pictures at an Exhibition" in its most popular iteration, Ravel's version for orchestra.

Anyone lucky enough to have caught her performance last April with the orchestra saw one of the most thrilling concerts of the season, thanks in part to the electrifying playing by Alexandre Kantorow for the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 2. his precise playing, abetted by Rakitina's shaping of the unweildy piece, made the case for the little-known work, which was making its Symphony Hall debut in this version. She also led the orchestra in the premiere of Ellen Reid's etherial "When the World As You've Known It Doesn't Exist," and Sibelius Symphony No. 7, a compact summation of his symphonic language that was beautifully realized in Rakintina's conducting.

The concerts will take place at Boston Symphony Hall on Friday, November 25 at 1:30pm and Saturday, November 26 at 8pm. For more information, click here.