The St. Louis Symphony will be launching its third tour in almost two decades in Europe this February.
The Symphony will perform Feb. 8-11 in the Spanish cities of Madrid, Oviedo and Valencia. The musicians will present works by composers John Adams, Antonin Dvorak, Aaron Copland, and others.
St. Louis residents will have a chance to hear those works in January before the group leaves for Spain.
The tour gives the group a rare opportunity to unite established musicians to develop their craft, Symphony President and CEO Marie-Hélène Bernard said.
“Tours for symphony orchestras are great ways for musicians to really showcase their really fine talent and to spend a lot of time together, and making music,” she said. “It’s not dissimilar from to any sports team. It’s actually quite similar.”
The last time the orchestra played the country was in 1998, led by the late Hans Vonk. Current music director David Robertson led the group during its only other European tour in 2012.
Bernard said she hopes the group’s travel will highlight the business and cultural strengths of St. Louis. She said the tour gives the group a rare opportunity to bring the skills of St. Louis to an international audience.
“For the St. Louis region it’s really, really, important to be international ambassadors,” she said. “So I like to think that we take a piece of our region with us on the road.”
The group’s travel is sponsored by the Centene Charitable Foundation.