Boston Philharmonic Orchestra

Mussorgsky/ Shostakovich/ Beethoven Concert


Prelude to Khovanshchina

(10 minutes)


Cello Concerto No. 1

(28 minutes)


Symphony No. 3, Eroica

(51 minutes)

Benjamin Zander, conductor

Andrei Ioniță, cello




There is no doubt whatsoever that Beethoven’s epochal “Eroica” Symphony changed music forever. It heralded a bold new musical language and a whole new stance of the composer to his audience. Beethoven dictated the terms, made the rules – the tastes and preferences of the audience and the convenience or ego of the performer were no longer to be taken into account. Everything about this symphony is unprecedented: size, its range of expression, its harmonic audacity, its political and philosophical implications, its demands on the orchestra and on the conductor. In these performances the attempt will be to recapture the extraordinary newness, the nowness, of the pinnacle of the symphonic repertoire. 

The concert begins with the prelude to Mussorgsky’s marvelous, but sadly incomplete, last opera. Khovanshchina is a work that has had many champions—Rimsky-Korsakov, Stravinsky, Shostakovich—but has yet to find a firm place in the western operatic tradition. Thankfully for us the enchanting prelude, an evocation of dawn over the river Moscow, has become a staple of the concert hall. -Benjamin Zander

International Tchaikovsky Competition winner, cellist Andrei Ioniță, will perform Shostakovich's Cello Concerto No. 1. The Times of London raves:

"Unless a programme of Debussy, Wagner, Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov pops is your cup of tea, I’d advise staying at home. Except that would mean missing one of the most exciting cellists to have emerged for a decade: the 20-year-old Andrei Ionut Ionita, whose reading of Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major coupled an intense beauty of tone with articulation of startling wit and playfulness.

Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich Cello Concerto No. 1 - 28 minutes

  • 2015 XV International Tchaikovsky Competition winner, cellist Andrei Ioniță,  joins the Boston Philharmonic for this performance. The Times of London calls Andrei Ioniță “one of the most exciting cellists to have emerged for a decade.” and the San Diego Union Tribune praised, "Cellist Andrei Ioniţă announced himself as a major talent with a technically flawless and emotionally profound interpretation of Elgar’s Cello Concerto. "

  • Dmitri Shostakovich wrote Cello Concerto No. 1 in 1959 for his friend, conductor and cellist Mstislav Rotropovich, who performed the premiere on October 4, 1959 with the Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra.

Beethoven Symphony No. 3, Eroica - 51 minutes

  • Eroica, Ludwig van Beethoven's 3rd Symphony, is considered to be the first Romantic Symphony. This landmark piece is widely thought to be the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras.

  • Written between 1803 and 1804, it was first performed for the public on April 7, 1805 in Vienna.

  • Beethoven originally titled the piece "Bonaparte" and changed the title to "Sinfonia eroica" after Napoleon declared himself emperor of the French. Beethoven's own secretary wrote that upon hearing about Napoleon's declaration Beethoven tore up the title page and said:

"So he is no more than a common mortal! Now, too, he will tread under foot all the rights of Man, indulge only his ambition; now he will think himself superior to all men, become a tyrant!"

All dates, repertoire, venues, and artists subject to change.


Sunday, February 6, 2022
3:00PM / Symphony Hall
Guide to the music with Benjamin Zander, 1:45PM. Parking and Directions

View Symphony Hall Seat Map

See our Orchestra map for common instrument locations as they would appear on stage.



Need help with the livestream? Visit support for Boston Philharmonic virtual events

Contact for questions about the livestream

COVID-19 Concert policies

  • Patrons attending concerts must show proof of full vaccination along with an ID.
    • Proof of vaccination can be showing a vaccine card, clear digital photograph of the vaccine card, or a digital vaccine record.
  • While indoors at Symphony Hall everyone 2 years and older must wear a CDC-approved mask that covers their nose and mouth regardless of vaccination status.

 Review the current Covid-19 policies for further information. 

For the 2021-2022 concert season all concerts will be held at Symphony Hall. To help you plan your visit please read:

Symphony Hall Policies