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Classical music in Paris, autumn 2012

Flickr/Alex Niedra

As the weather in Paris begins to cool in September, the classical music scene heats up as ensembles kick off their 2013-2013 seasons. Here’s a snapshot of what’s to come.

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7-8 September: The National Opera of Paris launches its 2012-2013 season with Jacques Offenbach’s The Tales of Hoffmann at the showcase modern Opéra Bastille, and the last opera by Richard Strauss, Capriccio, at the gilded 19th-century Palais Garnier. The sought-after Canadian director Robert Carsen has promised visual extravaganzas to accompany the two monumental works.

7 September: American director David Robertson will lead the St Louis Symphony Orchestra on its first European tour in 14 years, stopping by the Salle Pleyel to perform the Tragic Overture by Johannes Brahms, Ludwig van Beethoven’s Violin Concerto with soloist Christian Tetzlaff and, to finish, what else but George Gershwin’s An American in Paris?

13 September: The National Orchestra of France opens its season at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées with Beethoven’s Leonore Overture no 3. That is followed by the composer’s Triple Concerto for piano, violin and cello with a trio of French soloists: violinist Renaud Capuçon, cellist Yann Levionnois and pianist David Kadouch. Also on the programme is Richard Strauss’s dramatic tome poem A Hero’s Life.

19 September: The Ensemble Intercontemporain, a chamber music group created by master conductor and composer Pierre Boulez, combines the old and the new with a fascinating mix of trios by Johann Sebastian Bach and the contemporary Hungarian composer György Kurtág. It will take place at the amphitheatre at the Cité de la Musique in north-east Paris.

27 September: The Colonne Orchestra gives us more Beethoven with a performance of his light-hearted Symphony no 8 at the Salle Gaveau. There will also be the Symphony in C written by Paris local Georges Bizet, composed just days after he turned 17. The work was never played during his lifetime.

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