The program includes two 20th-century works, John Adams' Harmonielehre and Claude Vivier's Lonely Child; Mozart's arias "Laudate dominum" (from Vesperae solennes de confessore) and "Bella mia fiamma"; and Stravinsky's arrangement of Bach's "Vom Himmel hoch" variations. Soprano Dawn Upshaw and the Saint Louis Symphony Chorus are featured.
Robertson succeeds Hans Vonk, who stepped down in 2002 because of a rare neurological disorder and died last year.
The new music director will lead nine subscription programs, including the St. Louis premiere of Adams' On the Transmigration of Souls, this season.
Most of Robertson's programs include at least one piece of contemporary or 20th-century music by composers including George Benjamin, Magnus Lindberg, Steve Reich, Ingram Marshall, Morton Feldman, and Gy‹rgy Kurtšg.
Other new music on the schedule includes the St. Louis premiere of a new work for piano and orchestra by Charles Wuorinen.
Highlights also include Brahms' Ein deutsches Requiem (paired with Transmigration) and Mahler's Das Lied von Erde with soprano Michelle de Young. The SLSO will mark the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth with performances of 11 of his works, including the Requiem, the Mass in C minor, and the last three symphonies.
The season also marks the inauguration of a new cross-genre "fusion" series, which takes place on the campus of the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Among other concerts, the series includes a performance with the Wayne Shorter Quartet, led by Robertson.
Guest conductors include Roberto Abbado, Philippe Jordan, Nicholas McGegan, Peter Oundjian, and David Zinman. Among the soloists on the schedule are Gil Shaham, Emanuel Ax, Leon Fleisher, and Peter Serkin.