The midpoint of Become Ocean.
The final edition of Spring for Music, the four-year festival of inventive programming at Carnegie Hall, unfolds next week. The lineup includes the New York Philharmonic, playing Christopher Rouse's monumental Requiem; the Rochester Philharmonic, presenting a concert performance of Howard Hanson's Merry Mount; the Winnipeg Symphony, in an all-Canadian program of Derek Charke, Vincent Ho, and R. Murray Schafer; the Cincinnati Symphony, giving a rare revival of R. Nathaniel Dett's remarkable oratorio The Ordering of Moses (I reviewed a 1993 rendition); and the Pittsburgh Symphony, with an intriguing combination of Bruckner's Ave Maria, the final scene of Poulenc's Carmelites, James MacMillan's Woman of the Apocalypse, and a dramatized version of the Mozart Requiem, with readings by F. Murray Abraham. Perhaps the most anticipated offering is the Seattle Symphony's: Varèse's Déserts, Debussy's La Mer, and John Luther Adams's Become Ocean, which just won the Pulitzer Prize. The previous night, at 1opm (just after the Rouse), Seattle players will give a chamber program at LPR, featuring JLA's The Light Within. In past years the festival has struggled a bit with sales, despite eminently affordable prices ($12.50-$25), but the good news this year is that the parquet and the first tier are already sold out for all six concerts. I wouldn't be surprised if Seattle plays to a full house; the balcony is open.