Brahms & Copland

October 17 | 8:00 PM | Michigan Theater

Behind the Music

Writer’s block is annoying. Whether you’re writing an essay in college, a report at work, or a piece of music, everyone has encountered a creativity drought. But what about the iconic composers? Didn’t creative expression effortlessly flow from them? Nope! It took Johannes Brahms nearly twenty years to finish his first symphony. He said that he didn’t think he would finish it, even after he’d been working on the piece for almost a decade. Aaron Copland shared a similar experience when it took him over a year to write his sixteen-minute Clarinet Concerto for Benny Goodman. So, take a break from your writer’s block and come hear what procrastination sounds like!


MOZART Overture to The Impresario

COPLAND Clarinet Concerto

BRAHMS Symphony No. 1

Chad Burrow, clarinet

Andreas Delfs, conductor

Chad Burrow, Clarinet


In 2009, Burrow was appointed to the clarinet faculty of the University of Michigan, where he teaches clarinet and chamber music and has served as the director for the Michigan Chamber Players. Additionally, he serves as co-artistic director for the Brightmusic Society of Oklahoma and is on the faculty of the Sewanee Summer Music Festival and Alpenkammermusik Festival in Austria. Burrow is the current principal clarinetist with the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra and regularly performs with the Detroit Symphony and the Michigan Opera Theatre Orchestra. He is also the former principal clarinetist of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, the New Haven Symphony, Quartz Mountain Music Festival, and the Arizona Musicfest Orchestra, and a past associate professor of clarinet at Oklahoma City University.

Burrow’s recent concert engagements abroad have included concerts in Austria, Denmark’s Thy Chamber Music Festival, and Strasbourg, France; a recital in the National Concert Hall in Taipei, Taiwan; and Concerto appearances with the Taichung Philharmonic, the “Classic” Orchestra of Taichung, and the Shin Sharn Ensemble in Taipei. Recent performances in the United States have included appearances with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in Alice Tully Hall and with Chamber Music Northwest, as well as performances in a series of Benny Goodman centennial concerts in Carnegie Hall and Yale University. Other performances have included venues at Rice University, the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York, Northwestern University, Notre Dame University, and Louisiana State University, among many others. He has also appeared at three International Clarinet Association conferences and the University of Oklahoma Clarinet Symposium.

Burrow has recordings released by Albany Records, CD Baby, Centaur Records, and Wei Studios in Taiwan. A recent recording of Brahms and Schumann, with pianist Amy Cheng, was released on CD Baby. He is also the clarinetist with Trio Solari. The trio has had a regular touring schedule around the world since 2006.

Burrow serves as an artist for Backun Musical Services. He plays exclusively on Backun, MOBA clarinets.

Andreas Delfs,  Conductor


Andreas Delfs’ twelve seasons as Music Director of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra have been described as an extraordinary era during which the ensemble rose to national prominence under his guidance. Additionally, he led the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra as Music Director and artistic consultant, served as General Music Director of Hannover, Germany, conducting the symphony orchestra and opera company, and was resident conductor of the Pittsburgh Symphony. Over the years, Andreas Delfs has guest conducted numerous distinguished ensembles including the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Sydney Symphony, and the Taipei Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Delfs has conducted several world premieres and has close links with many of today’s top composers and performers including John Corigliano, Philip Glass, Roberto Sierra, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Yo-Yo Ma, and Renée Fleming. He has recorded with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra on the Naxos label and with the London Symphony Orchestra on the Telarc label. Other recording projects have included a collection of sacred songs with Renée Fleming for Decca, as well as a recording of Mozart’s Requiem with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Born in Flensburg, Germany, Delfs studied at the Hamburg Conservatory and The Juilliard School, where he won the Bruno Walter Memorial Scholarship. At 20, Andreas Delfs became the youngest ever Music Director of the Hamburg University Orchestra and Musical Assistant at the Hamburg State Opera.

By The Numbers

Annual a2so listeners

How many years it took Brahms to write his first symphony

Musicians in Your A2SO