San Francisco Symphony Announces 2022-23 Season

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Chinese pianist Yuja Wang performs with the Rotterdam Philarmonic Orchestra conducted by Yannick Nezet Seguin in concert for Bologna Festival at Auditorium Manzoni on April 24, 2018 in Bologna, Italy. ( Roberto Serra - Iguana Press/Getty Images)

The San Francisco Symphony has announced its 2022-2023 season, a packed program that includes premieres of new works, an emphasis on storytelling and a reverence for one of the form’s most essential elements: the piano.

With Esa-Pekka Salonen at the helm, the season kicks off with an opening night gala on Sept. 23. On Sept. 29, the music director conducts the debut of a new work by Trevor Weston, a music professor at Drew University and the winner of the 2021 Emerging Black Composers Project. That evening, the orchestra also performs Symphony No. 2 by Gustav Mahler, the Austro-Bohemian romantic composer who has been a guiding light for the San Francisco Symphony since the tenure of previous music director Michael Tilson Thomas.

“I was immediately taken by the beauty and the energy of [Weston’s] music, and also the sparkle of ideas, which is rare,” said Salonen in a statement. “His music seemed to be completely alive. I’m greatly looking forward to conducting his piece before the Mahler Second Symphony.”

In October, Salonen will lead the orchestra in performances that revolve around the themes of magic, myth and horror. Featured works include Modest Mussorgsky’s witchy Night on Bald Mountain, a suite from Bernard Herrmann’s score to Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho and HK Gruber’s cartoonish Frankenstein!! with baritone Christopher Purves.


In February and March, ahead of the orchestra’s spring 2023 European tour, the symphony will perform a series of concerts spotlighting guest pianists Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Conor Hanick, Lang Lang and Yuja Wang.

Russian-German pianist Igor Levit is this season’s artist in residence. His performances in June 2023 will feature two Orchestral Series concerts, a Great Performers solo recital and a chamber music concert with members of the orchestra.

“Igor Levit is perhaps the hottest pianist in Europe at the moment,” said Salonen in his statement, adding that he's “especially excited that Igor has decided to play the Busoni Piano Concerto with us, which is the strangest piano concerto ever written. It's about 75 minutes long and needs a big orchestra and a chorus. And it's a massive but utterly fascinating journey, full of beauty, struggle, love, and pain.”

Subscription packages for the 2022-2023 season are available starting March 29, and single tickets go on sale July 16.