Tonight through Saturday, Davies Symphony Hall doubles as concert hall and recording studio, as Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony play Romeo and Juliet by Berlioz. It will be a future release on their in-house label, SFS Media, which is celebrating its 15th anniversary this year. Joining the Symphony and the Symphony Chorus will be soloists Sasha Cooke, Nicholas Phan, and Luca Pisaroni.
There’s more information at the San Francisco Symphony website.
The first release on the SFS Media label was the Grammy-winning 6th Symphony of Mahler – part of a complete cycle that would go on to win more prizes. But MTT says the real benefit of having their own label is that it enables them to curate their recorded legacy. “The releases of the recordings have followed two streams, really,” he says. “To give a chance to hear rarely heard pieces, and also to, when appropriate, witness the way in which the interpretations of the standard pieces have evolved in the partnership between the San Francisco Symphony and myself.” One of their upcoming releases is a cycle of Schumann symphonies that has a very different approach from traditional recordings. This week, though, the attention will be on capturing Berlioz’s grand gesture of love. ” In the case of this Berlioz piece, part of it rests in the desire to record the piece with an absolutely sensational cast, because Sasha Cooke, Nicholas Phan, and Luca Pisaroni are probably the greatest singers with us in this generation to sing this music… The Romeo and Juliet dramatic symphony with chorus and soloists, as Berlioz calls it, is really the piece that chronicles some of the happiest years of his life.”