Well, here we go again. It's off season for most, so if something's going on around town, it's news to me. How to fill your week, then, and more importantly my 250-word column? Fortunately, most of the 1999-2000 season schedules have already been sent out. To allow for more in-depth coverage, and to keep the option open for future fallbacks, I've decided to tackle potential highlights one musical organization at a time, one week at a time. First up, the big boys on the block, THE SEATTLE SYMPHONY.

Never one to miss out on a marketing gimmick, the classical music industry is already gearing up to not let you forget that Nov 14, 2000--hell, the whole year--marks Aaron Copland's centenary. The Symphony is no exception, with 11 Copland pieces scheduled for the season, including an all-Copland night, Thurs May 11. The only other composers to get sole billing, besides one-piece-only performances (Beethoven's 9th, Mahler's 3rd, Handel's [sigh] Messiah), are a few Mozart nights and one for Stravinsky. World premieres are scheduled from Diane Thome, David Kechley, and Theodore Shapiro. And the guest list includes pianists Murray Perahia, Awadagin Pratt, John O'Conor, and Fazil Say; violinists Anne-Sophie Mutter and Cho-Liang Lin; clarinetist Richard Stoltzman; percussionist Evelyn Glennie; and conductors Hugh Wolff and Leonard Slatkin. Plus Guy Bovet, James David Christie, and Carole Terry, who together will inaugurate Benaroya's organ on July 1, 2000. Which as you read this, is but one scant year away; plan your ticket-buying now! Complete schedules and further details are readily available at www.seattlesymphony.org.

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