After last year’s season record-breaking ticket sales, the Tacoma Symphony will kick off its 2015-16 season at the Pantages Theater on Saturday with a crowd-pleasing program of Russian music, featuring pianist Andreas Boyde in Tchaikovsky’s rarely played second concerto. The German soloist will also perform Mussorgsky’s original piano version of “Pictures at an Exhibition” on Friday (Oct. 2) at the orchestra’s fundraising gala at Tacoma Art Museum.
“It’s a big, exciting program,” said director Sarah Ioannides, who just finished her first season leading the orchestra, which helped spur last year’s 20 percent jump in ticket sales and donors. “I heard Andreas play Tchaikovsky’s Concerto no. 2 when he was recording it in Freiburg. He has an amazing technique, all muscle. He’s a powerhouse. ‘Pictures’ is played a lot, for good reason, and I know he plays (the piano original), so I concocted the idea of him playing it at Tacoma Art Museum.”