Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

Beethoven's 7th Symphony

The Metropolitan Youth Symphony "offers not only a chance to encounter some excellent music we should all be hearing more often on classical concerts, but also these accomplished young musicians and their visionary conductor."—Oregon ArtsWatch (January 2, 2019)

Following a superbly enriching summer tour to Europe, the Metropolitan Youth Symphony (MYS) opens its 2019-20 season on November 10th with a beautifully crafted program centered around the tour de force, Beethoven 7. This concert fittingly begins a season that is full of energy, optimism and brand new music.


  • Joan Tower, For the Uncommon Woman
  • Matthew Kaminski, Hidden Voices, World Premiere  (part of The Authentic Voice program)
  • Henryk Wieniawski, Violin Concerto No. 2 (movement 1)
    featuring Kevin Tsai, MYS Concerto Competition Winner (Strings)
  • Ludwig van Beethoven, Symphony No. 7

Nicknamed “The Apotheosis of the Dance,” Beethoven's Symphony No. 7 kickstarts the season’s momentum with the ultimate symphonic dance experience. Lilting themes in the first movement give way to the slow and steady but captivating pulse of the second which develops with swirling, layered melodies. Forward motion builds through the raucous and unrelenting 3rd and 4th movements which creates a most satisfying drive to the very end. This performance anticipates and celebrates the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth in 2020.

Music Director Rául Gómez also leads the Symphony Orchestra in the WORLD PREMIERE of Matthew Kaminski’s Hidden Voices. This is the first of three symphonic premieres by young composers which comprise this season’s Authentic Voice program, presented in partnership with Fear No Music’s Young Composers Project and made possible through the generous support of Ronni Lacroute (read more about The Authentic Voice below.) A pianist and multiple award-winning composer, Matthew is a member of Cascadia Composers and recently attended the Brevard Music Center Summer Institute as one of four high school composition students selected for the program. His lyrical and impassioned yet reflective piece Hidden Voices draws inspiration from the emotions surrounding massive statewide budget cuts in education, which were predicted to cut jobs for roughly a third of the teachers at Matthew’s high school. Soft around the edges, this new work represents the often silenced voices of teachers who lack power in the face of government, especially when jobless. An unresolved ending points to the possibility of hope but also to the fact that this issue is ongoing, reoccurring and often without resolution.

MYS’s annual Concerto Competition inspires the organization’s most ambitious students to hone their craft through the mastery of challenging and mature solo repertoire. Last year’s winner in the strings category was Lake Oswego High School senior Kevin Tsai, who has played the violin for twelve years and studies with renowned soloist, concertmaster and Artistic Director (Montana Baroque Festival), Adam LaMotte. With this performance, Kevin solos in the wistful and restless first movement from Violin Concerto No. 2 by Polish violin virtuoso Henryk Wieniawski. The piece calls for an impressive array of advanced violin performance technique including chromatic glissandi, double stops, arpeggios, sixths, octaves, thirds, chromatic scales, and artificial harmonics, in addition to a wide variety of bowing techniques which Kevin handles with aplomb.

Joan Tower enjoys a well-deserved reputation as one of the most important American composers living today. The final work in her series of four fanfares dedicated to adventurous, risk-taking women, For the Uncommon Woman, makes a clear statement in reference to MYS’s commitment to inclusive programming. Of its premiere in 1992, The Kansas City Star reported it to be “a brilliant orchestra showpiece compacted within a 4 ½-minute span. Great slabs of dissonant brass chords crunch up against each other, and then chattering figurations run their way through the whole orchestra until a sonorous apotheosis is reached.” For more information about this work and Joan's illustrious career, visit the G. Schirmer website at

Visit Metropolitan Youth Symphony at

Metropolitan Youth Symphony 2019/20 Season

Sunday, November 10, 2019, 7:30pm
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

Sunday, January 12, 2020, 7:30pm
Newmark Theatre

Sunday, March 8, 2020, 7:30pm
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

Sunday, May 24, 2020, 7:30pm
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall

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