Dmitri Shostakovich is perhaps best known for his dark, expressive works, but he had a keen sense of humour as well. He wrote his Piano Concerto no. 2, one of his most cheerful works, for his young son. This evening's performance is in the hands of Steven Osborne, a favourite of many Icelandic concertgoers. This is his third appearance with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Composer Jón Nordal celebrates his ninetieth birthday in March 2016. To celebrate the composer and his work, the orchestra performs Choralis, which Jón wrote in 1982 for the National Symphony in Washington, DC, where it was premiered with Mstislav Rostropovich at the podium. Witold Lutosławski was one of Poland's premier twentieth-century composers, and Concerto for Orchestra was one of his crowning achievements, featuring each family in the orchestra at various points in the piece.
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