Highlight includes PSO’s Gorton-Van Hoesen family performing Goossens’ Concert Piece

PITTSBURGH –  Music Director Manfred Honeck closes the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s BNY Mellon Grand Classics season with three concerts featuring two momentous works.

The concerts will feature the PSO’s Gorton-Van Hoesen family (James, Gretchen and daughter Heidi) coming together to perform the imaginative Concert Piece for Oboe/English Horn, Two Harps and Orchestra by Eugene Goossens.

Honeck also continues the PSO’s Mahler Cycle with the immensely moving and provacative masterpiece – the Sixth Symphony. Last performed by the PSO 10 years ago, this “Tragic“ Symphony is an epic work that will leave the audience in awe of the sheer musical power manifested by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

The concerts begin at 8 p.m., Friday, June 15  and Saturday, June 16,  and at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 17. Tickets, ranging from $20 to $93, can be purchased by calling the Heinz Hall box office at 412.392.4900, or by visiting the PSO online at www.pittsburghsymphony.org.

The PSO would like to recognize and thank BNY Mellon for their 2011-2012 title sponsorship of BNY Mellon Grand Classics. Fairmont Pittsburgh is the Official Hotel of the PSO. Delta Air Lines is the official airline of the PSO. Bobby Rahal Automotive Group is the official automotive group of the PSO.

James Gorton, Co-Principal Oboist, Mildred S. Myers and William C. Frederick Chair, joined the PSO in 1971. Prior to joining the PSO, Gorton was a member of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, the Eastman-Rochester Orchestra, and Principal Oboe of the Rochester Chamber Orchestra. He has also served as Principal Oboe of the Colorado Philharmonic, New Hampshire Music Festival, Aspen Festival Orchestra, and Strings in the Mountains Festival. As oboe soloist, Gorton gave the Pittsburgh premiere of Witold Lutoslawski’s Double Concerto for Oboe, Harp and Chamber Orchestra with harpist Gretchen Van Hoesen, conductor Zdenek Macal and the PSO in May 1985. Gorton presented the Rochester premiere of L’Horloge de flore (The Flower Clock) by Jean Françaix with the Eastman-Rochester Orchestra under Walter Hendl.  Other solo appearances with the PSO have included both the Mozart and Haydn Sinfonia concertante and the Hertel Concerto in E-flat for Oboe and Trumpet.  In addition, Gorton has appeared as soloist with the Colorado Philharmonic, New Hampshire Music Festival, Johnstown Symphony, Carnegie Civic Symphony (now Pittsburgh Civic Orchestra) and the Main Line (Philadelphia) Symphony. His performance of the C.P.E. Bach Concerto in D minor with the Pittsburgh Symphony Chamber Orchestra was named one of the Top Ten Concerts of 2001 by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Gretchen Van Hoesen has been Principal Harpist of the Pittsburgh Symphony since 1977. She presently holds the Virginia Campbell endowed Principal Harp Chair of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and has appeared as soloist with the orchestra on numerous occasions, both on the subscription series and on tour. She gave the New York premiere of the Alberto Ginastera Harp Concerto in 1976 and the Pittsburgh premiere in 1978. She has appeared as soloist with conductors André Previn, Lorin Maazel, James Conlon, Zdnek Macal, Sergiu Comissiona, and Pinchas Zukerman and has collaborated with flutists James Galway, Bernard Goldberg, Jean-Pierre Rampal and Emmanuel Pahud. Van Hoesen and her husband, PSO Co-Principal Oboe James Gorton, presented the Pittsburgh premiere of Witold Lutoslawski’s Double Concerto for Oboe, Harp and Chamber Orchestra on the Pittsburgh Symphony subscription series.  She gave the US premiere of Suite Concertante for solo harp and orchestra by Manuel Moreno-Buendia in San Antonio, Texas. In March 2008, she presented the world premiere of Sir André Previn’s Concerto for Harp on the Pittsburgh Symphony subscription series.

Heidi Van Hoesen Gorton has been described as one of the most outstanding solo, chamber and orchestral musicians of her generation and has performed solo recitals the world over from New York to Los Angeles, Vancouver to Vienna. As an orchestral player Heidi has performed with the Pittsburgh, Boston and Hartford Symphony Orchestras with maestros Manfred Honeck, Andrew Davis, Marek Janowski, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Rafael Fruhbeck de Burgos, Gianandrea Noseda, and James Levine. She has been a member of the Sun Valley Summer Symphony since 2001, after having participated in the National Repertory Orchestra of America (a preeminent intensive fellowship that equips young musicians for orchestral music careers). Heidi has been an active participant in the Strings Chamber Music Festival, as well as the Music Festivals at Aspen, Tanglewood and Interlochen.

Editors Please Note:

Friday, June 15 at 8 p.m.
Saturday, June 16 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, June 17 at 2:30 p.m.


Eugene Goossens                       Concert Piece for Oboe/English Horn, Two Harps and Orchestra, Opus 65

Gustav Mahler                           Symphony No. 6 in A minor “Tragic”


  • matt davis
    Posted April 2, 2013

    i need to hear that piece by Goossens again, is there anywhere online i can listen to it…thanks

  • Kevin DeLuca
    Posted April 3, 2013

    Unfortunately, the rebroadcast of that concert on WQED just happened on March 24, and there is no other scheduled rebroadcast at this time. For a complete schedule of rebroadcasted PSO concerts, please visit http://www.wqed.org/fm/psoradio/

  • Henry Hobscheid
    Posted January 4, 2014

    There is a WQED Audio on Demand website:


    The Goossens piece is under the heading:

    Pittsburgh Symphony Radio – 12-13 – Program 26 – Part 1

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