Our guide to the city’s best classical music and opera.
BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA at Tanglewood (Aug. 27, 2:30 p.m.). If you’re heading to Lenox, Mass., this weekend, skip Saturday evening’s opera gala — featuring Kristine Opolais and Bryn Terfel in the second act of “Tosca,” a smattering of Wagner and, dubiously, excerpts from “Porgy and Bess” — in favor of Sunday afternoon’s performance of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, with Charles Ives’s “The Housatonic at Stockbridge” as a prelude. Andris Nelsons is a fine conductor of Beethoven; the singers are Katie Van Kooten, Tamara Mumford, Russell Thomas and John Relyea.
DELL’ARTE OPERA ENSEMBLE at La MaMa (Aug. 26, 2 p.m.). This ensemble’s summer season has included Janacek’s “The Cunning Little Vixen,” and this recital picks up a similar zoological theme, with songs about animal life by Barber, Debussy, Jake Heggie and others.
HERE AND NOW SERIES LABOR DAY FESTIVAL at Bargemusic (Aug. 30 and Sept. 1-2, 8 p.m.). Credit to Bargemusic for taking a stand, at last, with the latest iteration of its new-music series: All three of these programs, for the most part the same but all slightly different, are made up wholly of work by female composers. World premieres come from Dalit Warshaw, Missy Mazzoli, Alexandra du Bois, Miya Masaoka, Milica Paranosic, Gity Razaz, Whitney George, Nina C. Young and Paula Matthusen; additional works are by names including Laura Kaminsky and Paola Prestini. And the players are all women, too, Ursula Oppens, Jennifer Choi and Kathleen Supové among them.
TAKA KIGAWA at Le Poisson Rouge (Aug. 28, 7 p.m.). You can rely on Mr. Kigawa for programs that step beyond the ordinary repertoire of most pianists, and here is another one: a performance of Olivier Messiaen’s “Catalogue d’Oiseaux.” Written in the late 1950s for Yvonne Loriod, a former student of Messiaen’s whom he went on to marryand who was a crucial pianist for postwar composers, it’s a series of portraits of birds and their surroundings, 13 in all, stretching well over two hours of playing. To experience it all, in one sitting, is a rare sighting indeed.
LOCRIAN CHAMBER PLAYERS at Riverside Church (Aug. 25, 8 p.m.). Among the New York contemporary music scene’s best-kept secrets, this group continues its mission to present music from the last 10 years or so, in the unusual setting of a church tower in Morningside Heights. On the bill this time are pieces by John Luther Adams, Adrienne Albert, Aaron Alter, Caroline Mallonée, Andrew Lovett and David Macdonald.
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