Spring for Music, which Tony Tommasini discussed in last Sunday's New York Times, begins on Friday. Tickets are at most $25; WQXR will broadcast all the concerts live. I'm particularly looking forward to the Oregon Symphony's war-torn program of Ives's Unanswered Question, John Adams's The Wound-Dresser (with the great Sanford Sylvan), Britten's Sinfonia da Requiem, and Vaughan Williams's Fourth Symphony.... Further encouraging inventive programming, the National Endowment for the Humanities has awarded $300,000 to four orchestras — the Pacific Symphony, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the North Carolina Symphony, and the Louisville Orchestra — to develop programs demonstrating music's historical and cultural context.... With a strike averted, New York City Opera is going ahead with this year's VOX series on May 14 and 15: works of Dag Gabrielsen, Arlene Sierra, Allan Jaffe, Huang Ruo, Andrew Gerle, David T. Little, Hannah Lash, Paola Prestini, Jeff Myers, Yoav Gal.... Houston Grand Opera will give free performances of Your Name Means the Sea, a new opera by the eloquent Azerbaijani composer Franghiz Ali-Zadeh, on May 21, 24, and 26.... Invisible Cities, an Italo Calvino opera by Christopher Cerrone, will have its stage premiere at Columbia University's Italian Academy on May 13 and 14.... It's MATA time again! The beloved young-composer fest runs from May 9 to 12. Corey Dargel, whom Steve Smith recently profiled in the Times (listen there to his haunting Last Words from Texas), is featured on May 11. Also, the Metropolis Ensemble program will feature the hip-hop-inflected sounds of Brad Balliett and Elliot Cole, whose Oracle Hysterical project graced this blog back in 2007.... The long-awaited Third Symphony of Christopher Rouse will receive its first performances this week at the St. Louis Symphony. Saturday's rendition will be broadcast live on St. Louis Public Radio (90.7 KWMU) at 8PM CT. An advance story by Sarah Bryan Miller reveals that the new piece is an homage to Prokofiev's hard-hitting Second Symphony.... Boosey & Hawkes joins Schirmer in offering scores online.