New Jersey Symphony and Music Director Xian Zhang Announce 2024–25 Season

Mar 1, 2024


  • Allison Loggins-Hull appointed the next New Jersey Symphony Resident Artistic Partner
  • Gala & Concert with Renée Fleming on October 6 at NJPAC
  • Audience favorites include Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, “Choral,” Gustav Holst’s The Planets, Igor Stravinsky’s Suite from The Firebird and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade
  • Guest artists include Steven Banks, Inon Barnatan, Paquito D’Rivera, Vadim Gluzman, Conrad Tao, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Nancy Zhou
  • Disney’s The Muppet Christmas Carol and Star Wars: The Force Awakens in Concert: Warner Bros. Discovery presents Bugs Bunny at the Symphony 30th Anniversary Concert
  • World Premiere by Xavier Foley: New Work for Double Bass and Orchestra
  • Collaborations with Nimbus Dance, TD James Moody Jazz Festival, Montclair State University Chorale, Prima Voce and Singers

NEWARK, NJ—The New Jersey Symphony’s 2024–25 season was announced today by the Symphony and Music Director Xian Zhang. With a lineup spanning classical, holiday, family and movie concerts, there is truly something for everyone. Enjoy the season-opening Gala & Concert with superstar Renée Fleming, bring the whole family to see The Muppet Christmas Carol in Concert, relive great classics including Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, “Choral,” and Gustav Holst’s The Planets with stunning HD images from NASA, introduce family and friends to classical music with Discover Mozart & Bach, and so much more.

The Grammy- and Emmy-winning New Jersey Symphony is a statewide organization, presenting mainstage concerts at New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick, Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank, Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown and Richardson Auditorium on the Princeton University campus. Subscription offerings are available at all five venues, including same-seat subscriptions and a flexible option of Compose Your Own Series of four or more concerts, which allows patrons to put together their own package of concerts at any venue, concert or seating section. Subscribers save money compared to buying tickets individually, and receive loyalty rewards through subscriber benefits.

New Jersey Symphony’s Music Director Xian Zhang is in high demand as a guest conductor across the nation and internationally, for top orchestras including Los Angeles Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Seattle Symphony and Toronto Symphony. In 2024, Zhang made her Metropolitan Opera debut conducting Giacomo Pucini’s Madama Butterfly. In 2024–25, Zhang enters her ninth season as the New Jersey Symphony Music Director.

Xian Zhang says, “I look forward to what will be an extraordinary season, full of exciting new experiences as well as exceptional performances of well-known repertoire. This season, we’ll explore the natural world through music, including a thrilling collaboration with superstar soprano Renée Fleming and National Geographic, and performances of Holst’s The Planets with HD images from NASA. I’m also happy to welcome back returning artistic collaborators Nimbus Dance, as they perform not one, but two brand-new dances with the Symphony. This season’s repertoire will bring audiences to far-away lands and familiar places, all from the comfort and splendor of the concert hall. I invite our patrons to take a musical journey with us, and together we’ll revel in the artistic ambition of the New Jersey Symphony.”

For New Jersey audiences, Zhang has crafted a season full of beloved masterpieces, bold new works and brilliant guest artists. In addition to Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and Gustav Holst’s The Planets, other audience-favorite works on the season include Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Symphony No. 35, “Haffner,” Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2 and Piano Concerto No. 2, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade, Dmitri Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 and Igor Stravinsky’s Suite from The Firebird.

Zhang has also infused the season with new experiences including celebrated premieres and other works by living composers, as well as several artist debuts. Highlights include Billy Childs’ Saxophone Concerto and Xavier Foley’s Soul Bass. Foley will also present the world premiere of a new work for double bass and orchestra.

Newly-appointed Resident Artistic Partner Allison Loggins-Hull’s work Can You See? will be presented on a program in February. In addition to being featured in mainstage New Jersey Symphony programs, Loggins-Hull will become a partner on the artistic leadership team, adding her unique experiences and perspective to the artistic planning process. Loggins-Hull will also participate in the Symphony’s education and community engagement efforts throughout the state of New Jersey.

Allison Loggins-Hull says, “I am thrilled to be joining the New Jersey Symphony’s artistic leadership team. This treasured New Jersey cultural institution has already started on its journey of transforming what classical music can be in my home state. I look forward to being part of a team that propels the Symphony’s artistic ambition and delivery to new heights–crafting memorable musical moments and collaborations, through concert experiences and education programs.”

Season Highlights

Announcing Allison Loggins-Hull, Resident Artistic Partner

The New Jersey Symphony welcomes Allison Loggins-Hull as its next Resident Artistic Partner, a position that Daniel Bernard Roumain pioneered and grew over the last three years. Allison is a flutist, composer and producer, and lives with her family in Montclair, NJ. In this role, Allison will continue to partner with artistic leadership add her unique experiences and perspective to the artistic planning process. Loggins-Hull has been associated with acts across the spectrum of popular and classical music including Flutronix, Hans Zimmer, Lizzo, Imani Winds, Alarm Will Sound, the International Contemporary Ensemble, Alicia Hall Moran and Jason Moran. Her music is resonant with social and political themes of the current moment, encompassing motherhood, Blackness, and cultural identity. Loggins-Hull and Nathalie Joachim co-founded the critically acclaimed duo Flutronix, which has been praised by The Wall Street Journal for being able “to redefine the instrument” and for “redefining the flute and modernizing its sound by hauling it squarely into the world of popular music” (MTV).

The 2024–25 season marks Loggins-Hull’s second of three years as the Lewis Composer Fellow with The Cleveland Orchestra, resulting in three world premieres, and she is also the Artist-in-Residence at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland.

More information on Loggins-Hull is available at

Season Opening Gala & Concert with Renée Fleming

A special concert featuring superstar soprano Renée Fleming will take place on Sunday, October 6, at 3 pm at NJPAC in Newark. Inspired by Fleming’s 2023 Grammy Award-winning album, Voice of Nature: the Anthropocene, this special performance spans classical, romantic and contemporary music, exploring nature as both inspiration and victim of humanity. The music will be accompanied by a stunning original film from National Geographic Society. Gala packages include a pre-concert cocktail party and post-concert dinner. Gala tickets can be purchased in Summer 2024. Tickets for the concert with Renée Fleming go on sale in April 2024, and can be purchased online at or by phone at 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476).

This concert is presented in collaboration with New Jersey Performing Arts Center.

Premieres, Commissions and Living Composers

The 2024–25 season will continue to expand on the New Jersey Symphony’s commitment to premiering and commissioning new works by living composers. Music Director Xian Zhang will conduct the world premiere of Xavier Foley’s New Work for Double Bass and Orchestra, in addition to conducting Foley’s already premiered Soul Bass for Orchestra. Foley himself will perform as soloist on both works—audiences will have the rare opportunity to hear the composer soloing in the world premiere of his own work. Allison Loggins-Hull, the New Jersey Symphony’s incoming Resident Artistic Partner, will have her work Can You See? featured in February 2025. Other living composers having their works presented on the season include Billy Childs’ Saxophone Concerto, Daniel Freiberg’s Latin American Chronicles, Qasim Naqvi’s God Docks at Death Harbor, Gabriela Ortiz’s Kauyumari, Caroline Shaw’s The Observatory and Donghoon Shin’s Of Rats and Men.

Artist Collaborations with New Jersey’s Own

The New Jersey Symphony continues its long history of working with New Jersey-based arts organizations and collaborating to achieve new artistic heights. In November, the Symphony will be joined on stage by Grammy and Latin Grammy Award-winning artist Paquito D’Rivera and his Quintet for a program full of Latin Jazz, Gershwin and Mexican favorites. The concert is in partnership with the TD James Moody Jazz Festival at New Jersey Performing Arts Center. In March, Jersey City’s Nimbus Dance takes the stage with the Symphony for their interpretation of Stravinsky’s Suite from The Firebird in dance at the Newark concerts. Throughout the weekend, Nimbus Dance also performs brand-new choreography titled “Dark Water” to Qasim Navqi’s God Docks at Death Harbor, which Navqi says is “a vision of our planet years from now … the quiet and peacefulness of a world restoring itself.” In December, the Montclair State University Singers perform the annual tradition of Handel’s Messiah, In January, the Montclair State University Prima Voce will perform in Gustav Holst’s The Planets, and, in April, the Montclair State University Chorale will perform Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the orchestra—an “Ode to Joy” of a program. The Montclair State University Chorale, Singers and Prima Voce are directed by Heather J. Buchanan. In January, another annual tradition continues, with Music Director Xian Zhang conducting the 2025 Lunar New Year Celebration concert, featuring Peking University Alumni Chorus and Starry Arts Children’s Chorus.

The New Jersey Symphony will continue its annual collaboration with New Jersey Ballet and Mayo Performing Arts Center in presenting NJ Ballet’s The Nutcracker in December 2024. Performance dates to be announced.

Featured Guest Artists

Thrilling guest artists will appear on stage throughout the season. The Season Opening Gala & Concert will feature superstar Renée Fleming in a concert inspired by her Grammy Award-Winning album Voice of Nature: the Anthropocene, which explores nature as both inspiration and victim to humanity. The concert is accompanied by a stunning film by the National Geographic Society.

For lovers of piano concertos, the season features three returning audience-favorite pianists: Inon Barnatan performing Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 17, Jean-Yves Thibaudet performing the jazzy Piano Concerto in G by Maurice Ravel and Conrad Tao performing Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

Music Director Xian Zhang has been a champion of introducing new and diverse artists to New Jersey audiences. In the 2024–25 season, Tony Siqi Yun makes his New Jersey Symphony classical series debut preforming Frédéric Chopin’s Piano Concerto No. 1. Yun made his New Jersey Symphony debut at the 2024 Lunar New Year Celebration, dazzling the audience selections from the Yellow River Concerto and Ravel's Piano Concerto in G.

For violin concerto enthusiasts, Vadim Gluzman will perform Johannes Brahms’ Violin Concerto, one of the greatest of all concertos. Nancy Zhou, another Asian-American artist Zhang has championed, will perform Ralph Vaughan Williams’ The Lark Ascending.

Conductors Kevin John Edusei, Lina González-Granados and Jeannette Sorrell will have their New Jersey Symphony debut in the 2024–25 season. Returning guest conductors include George Daugherty, Christoph König, Constantine Kitsopoulos and Carlos Miguel Prieto.

New Jersey Symphony Musicians Take Center Stage

The New Jersey Symphony is critically acclaimed for its roster of extremely talented musicians, and concerts that feature the stars of the orchestra showcasing their talent. Concertmaster Eric Wyrick will be joined on stage with Principal Second Violin Francine Storck to perform Johann Sebastion Bach’s Double Concerto for Two Violins. On the same program, a solo string quartet of NJ Symphony players will be featured in Michael Abels’ Delights and Dances, a bluesy work for solo string quartet and string orchestra. Principal Cello Jonathan Spitz will open The Firebird program in March with the Prelude from Johann Sebastian Bach's Cello Suite No. 2.

New Jersey Symphony, and the Big Screen!

The wildly popular New Jersey Symphony at the Movies series continues, with two movie-in-concert presentations in 2024–25 season. In December, Disney’s The Muppet Christmas Carol in Concert will have its tri-state debut, with the holiday favorite score performed live to picture. In April, the New Jersey Symphony will present Star Wars: The Force Awakens in Concert, a continuation of the popular Star Wars trilogy concerts the Symphony has performed to thousands of audience goers across the state. Star Wars: The Force Awakens features John Williams’ epic score, using both new and old themes throughout, including the popular “Rey’s Theme.”

In February, Bugs Bunny at the Symphony returns for the 30th Anniversary of the popular animated series featuring classics like “Baton Bunny,” “The Rabbit of Seville,” and “What’s Opera Doc.” Created by George Daugherty and David Ka Lik Wong, and conducted by George Daugherty himself, it’s a not-to-be-missed concert full of your favorite Looney Tunes characters on the big screen, with the extraordinary musical scores performed live.

Holiday Celebrations

The annual tradition of performing Handel’s Messiah continues, this year with an extra performance at Richardson Auditorium in Princeton, so even more patrons can enjoy the warm atmosphere and music in Princeton. Conductor Jeannette Sorrell will be joined by soprano Sonya Headlam, countertenor John Holiday, tenor Ed Lyons and bass-baritone Kevin Deas, as well as the Montclair State University Singers, directed by Heather J. Buchanan. Also in December, the Symphony’s newest tradition A Gospel Holiday will be performed at Newark’s Science Park High School, featuring the New Jersey Symphony Gospel Chorus. In January, Music Director Xian Zhang conducts the 2025 Lunar New Year Celebration Concert, the Year of the Snake. Pianist Min Kwon joins on stage, as well as two choruses—Peking University Alumni Chorus and Starry Arts Children’s Chorus.

Family Concerts

Concerts designed for children will be featured in the season, including the annual A Gospel Holiday concert spotlighting celebrated artists from Newark and beyond. This community concert is performed in Newark’s Science Park High School and features the New Jersey Symphony Gospel Chorus. In May, the Symphony will present Discover Mozart & Bach, where children (and adults!) can discover what makes a live orchestra concert so special, with a deep dive into two joyous works by Mozart and Bach. The “Discover” series is inspired by Leonard Berstein’s masterful way of putting young audiences at the center of music-making.

Summer Concerts

This summer, the New Jersey Symphony will present as part of its 2023–24 season—which began in September 2023 and runs through August 2024—a full slate of outdoor and indoor summer concerts in the summer of 2024, including concerts at parks and community centers throughout the state. An announcement will be made in mid-April 2024. Summer concerts will also be programmed for 2024–25 season and will be announced in spring 2025.

Tickets and Subscriptions

Subscriptions are now on sale for the 2024–25 season. Patrons can choose from curated packages at a specific venue or create their own series of concerts throughout the state. Full information on ticket packages for each series and venue is available at; subscriptions are available for purchase online or by phone at 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476). Single tickets will go on sale in August.

New Jersey Symphony

The Emmy and Grammy Award-winning New Jersey Symphony is redefining what it means to be a nationally leading, relevant orchestra in the 21st century. The Symphony is renewing its deeply rooted commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion by championing new, and often local, artists; engaging audiences for whom the inspiring depth and breadth of classical music will be a new experience; and incorporating the broadest possible representation in all aspects of our organization-all to better reflect and serve our vibrant communities.

Internationally renowned Chinese American conductor Xian Zhang began her tenure as the New Jersey Symphony's current Music Director in 2016. Since her arrival at the New Jersey Symphony, Zhang has revitalized programming with an industry-leading commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion in mainstage concerts.

For more information about the New Jersey Symphony, visit or email Tickets are available for purchase by phone 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476) or on the Orchestra's website.

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The New Jersey Symphony's programs are made possible in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, along with many other foundations, corporations and individual donors.