Press Room

Inon Barnatan

The Houston Symphony Celebrates Thanksgiving Weekend with Star Pianist Inon Barnatan and the Music of Mozart and Brahms

HOUSTON (Nov. 9, 2018) – The Houston Symphony celebrates Thanksgiving weekend by giving thanks for the musical legacy of two of the greatest symphonic composers of all time, Mozart and Brahms. The orchestra is joined by exciting guest artists Inon Barnatan, piano and David Danzmayr, conductor for A Mozart & Brahms Thanksgiving at 8 p.m., Nov. 23-24, and 2:30 p.m. Nov. 25 at Jones Hall.

Known as “a true poet of the keyboard” (The New York Times), Barnatan brings his consummate artistry to Mozart’s great Piano Concerto No. 22: a work often considered the pinnacle of Mozart’s ingenious skill at finding unique orchestral hues. In fact, this work marks the first time Mozart adds clarinets to the orchestra of one of his piano concertos.

Current chief conductor of the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, Danzmayr opens the program with the overture to Franz von Suppé’s operetta The Beautiful Galatea, a tuneful concert-opener full of Viennese waltzes. Danzmayr and the orchestra close out this program with Johannes Brahms’ powerful, cathartic Symphony No. 4.

A Mozart and Brahms Thanksgiving sponsored by Rand Group takes place at Jones Hall for the Performing Arts, 615 Louisiana Street, in Houston’s Theater District. For tickets and information, please call (713) 224-7575 or visit Tickets may also be purchased at the Houston Symphony Patron Services Center in Jones Hall (Monday–Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). All programs and artists are subject to change.

Friday, Nov. 23, 2018, at 8 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 24, 2018, at 8 p.m.
Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018, at 2:30 p.m.
David Danzmayr, conductor
Inon Barnatan, piano
Suppé: Overture to The Beautiful Galatea
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 22
Brahms: Symphony No. 4

About David Danzmayr
Described by The Herald as “extremely good, concise, clear, incisive and expressive,” David Danzmayr is widely regarded as one of the most talented and exciting European conductors of his generation.

David is chief conductor of the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, the first to hold this title in seven years. He and the orchestra regularly perform to sold-out audiences and have been awarded the Zagreb City Award. David is music director of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, which includes musicians from across the United States. His contract has recently been extended.

Previously, David served as music director for Chicago’s Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, where he was lauded by the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Classical Review. He was the only conductor in the Chicago area who programmed a piece of American music on every concert.

David has won prizes at some of the world’s most prestigious conducting competitions, including second prize at the international Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition and prizes at the Malko Competition. For his extraordinary success, he was awarded the Bernhard Paumgartner Medal by the International Stiftung Mozarteum.

Propelled by these early successes into an international career, David has quickly become a sought-after guest conductor for orchestras around the globe. Besides numerous re-invitations, future engagements will include concerts here and with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Grant Park Music Festival.

David frequently appears in the world’s major concert halls such as the Musikverein and Konzerthaus in Vienna, Grosses Festspielhaus Salzburg, Usher Hall in Edinburgh and Chicago’s Symphony Hall.
He has served as assistant conductor of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, which he has conducted in more than 70 concerts, performing in all the major Scottish concert halls and in the prestigious, Orkney-based St. Magnus Festival.

David Danzmayr received his musical training at the Mozarteum University Salzburg where, after initially studying piano, he went on to study conducting in the class of Dennis Russell Davies. He finished his studies with the highest honors.

He was strongly influenced by Pierre Boulez and Claudio Abbado in his time as conducting stipendiate of the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra and by Leif Segerstam during his additional studies in the conducting class of the Sibelius Academy. He subsequently gained significant experience as assistant to Neeme Järvi, Stéphane Dèneve, Carlos Kalmar, Sir Andrew Davis and Boulez, who entrusted David with the preparatory rehearsals for his own music.

About Inon Barnatan
“One of the most admired pianists of his generation” (The New York Times), Inon Barnatan is celebrated for his poetic sensibility, musical intelligence and consummate artistry. He is the recipient of the prestigious 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant and Lincoln Center’s 2015 Martin E. Segal Award, which recognizes “young artists of exceptional accomplishment.” He was recently named music director of the La Jolla Music Society Summerfest, beginning in 2019.

The Israeli pianist recently served three seasons as the inaugural artist-in-association of the New York Philharmonic. This season, he plays Beethoven with Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie Orchestra led by Alan Gilbert, Mozart with the Australian Chamber Orchestra in New York’s Alice Tully Hall and Rachmaninoff with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, again led by Gilbert. In recent seasons, he debuted at the BBC Proms; with the London and Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestras; and with Chicago, Baltimore, Fort Worth, Indianapolis, Nashville, San Diego and Seattle orchestras.

This season Inon collaborates with the Dover, Calidore and St. Lawrence String Quartets, performing with the latter in Carnegie Hall, and tours the United States and Europe with his frequent collaborator, cellist Alisa Weilerstein, along with violinist Sergey Khachatryan and percussionist Colin Currie. He makes his recital debut in the International Piano Series at London’s Southbank Centre and plays additional recitals in the Seattle Symphony’s Benaroya Hall and the Celebrity Series of Boston, where he has appeared in various configurations since 2008. He has commissioned and performed many new works, including premieres of pieces by Thomas Adès, Sebastian Currier, Avner Dorman, Alan Fletcher, Joseph Hallman, Alasdair Nicolson, Andrew Norman and Matthias Pintscher.

“A born Schubertian” (Gramophone), Inon’s critically acclaimed discography includes Avie and Bridge recordings of the Austrian composer’s solo piano works, as well as Darknesse Visible, which scored a coveted place on The New York Times’ Best of 2012 list. His most recent release is a live recording of Messiaen’s 90-minute masterpiece Des canyons aux étoiles (“From the Canyons to the Stars”), in which he played the formidable solo piano part at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. His 2015 Decca Classics release, Rachmaninov & Chopin: Cello Sonatas with Weilerstein earned rave reviews internationally. Visit

About the Houston Symphony
During the 2018-19 season, the Houston Symphony celebrates its fifth season with Music Director Andrés Orozco- Estrada and continues its second century as one of America’s leading orchestras with a full complement of concert, community, education, touring and recording activities. The Houston Symphony, one of the oldest performing arts organizations in Texas, held its inaugural performance at The Majestic Theater in downtown Houston June 21, 1913. Today, with an annual operating budget of $33.9 million, the full-time ensemble of 88 professional musicians presents nearly 170 concerts annually, making it the largest performing arts organization in Houston. Additionally, musicians of the orchestra and the Symphony’s four Community-Embedded Musicians offer over 900 community-based performances each year, reaching thousands of people in Greater Houston.

The Grammy Award-winning Houston Symphony has recorded under various prestigious labels, including Naxos, Koch International Classics, Telarc, RCA Red Seal, Virgin Classics and, most recently, Dutch recording label PENTATONE. In 2017, the Houston Symphony was awarded an ECHO Klassik award for the live recording of Alban Berg’s Wozzeck under the direction of former Music Director Hans Graf. The orchestra earned its first Grammy nomination and Grammy Award at the 60th annual ceremony for the same recording in the Best Opera Recording category.

Eric Skelly: (713) 337-8560,
Mireya Reyna: (713) 337-8557,


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