XIAN ZHANG CONDUCTOR ALBAN GERHARDT cello NEW JERSEY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA Melody reigns supreme as Tchaikovsky channels Mozart in the delightful Variations, with virtuoso cellist Alban Gerhardt as soloist. Beethoven’s Sixth is his most serene symphony, a vision of the countryside ruffled only by a passing thunderstorm, while “celestial” is an apt word to describe American composer Kernis’ gorgeous opener. KERNIS Musica celestis (NJSO Premiere) A modern-day ethereal Adagio for Strings—Kernis conjures the sound of medieval angels singing in praise of God. TCHAIKOVSKY Variations on a Rococo Theme Agile and sprightly, Tchaikovsky’s Variations recall the effortless grace of Mozart’s music. BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 6, “Pastoral” For sheer beauty, few Beethoven pieces rival his ode to the splendors of the countryside.