BOSTON LYRIC OPERA follows up Dvorák’s moonstruck Rusalka (Shubert Theatre, March 20-31) with Christopher Schaldebrand in the title role of Mozart’s Don Giovanni (April 24–May 5; 617.542.6772). OPERA BOSTON gives us Smetana’s tuneful The Bartered Bride, with soprano Jennifer Aylmer and baritone James Maddalena (May 1, 3, 5; 617.451.9944). You can also see live Hi-Def telecasts from the METROPOLITAN OPERA at near-by movie theaters (www.metoperafamily.org).
HOT VOX Renée Fleming returns to Symphony Hall April 19.
At the BOSTON SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA (617.266.1200 or www.bso.org), guest conductor Charles Dutoit has a Franco-Russian program (March 26-28). The great Brazilian pianist Nelson Freire pays a rare visit playing the Grieg Piano Concerto under talented BSO assistant conductor Shi-Yeon Sung (April 9-11, 14). Yuri Temirkanov has cancelled all his US appearances, and as of this writing, replacement BSO programs have yet to be announced. Still, Sir Colin Davis will end the season with Imogen Cooper in Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25 and the Berlioz Te Deum, with Met tenor Matthew Polenzani (April 30, May 1-2).
Some Russians are coming. The CELEBRITY SERIES OF BOSTON (617.482.6661; www.celebrityseries.org) follows Valery Gergiev and the London Symphony Orchestra (Symphony Hall, March 25) with Vladimir Spivakov leading the National Philharmonic of Russia and Siberian pianist Denis Matsuev (Symphony Hall, April 22). The Orion String Quartet, with clarinettist David Krakauer, plays Wolf, Del Tredici, Golijov, and Beethoven (Jordan Hall, April 18). High-level song recitals include British tenor Ian Bostridge (Jordan Hall, April 3), glamorous superstar soprano Renée Fleming (Symphony Hall, April 19), and soprano Dawn Upshaw (Jordan Hall, May 3). Pianists Murray Perahia (Symphony Hall, March 29) and Krystian Zimerman (Jordan Hall, April 10) will also be big draws.
DAVID HOOSE and the CANTATA SINGERS (617.868.5885) are focusing on Benjamin Britten: a staging of his opera The Little Sweep, with the PALS Children’s Chorus (Roxbury Community College, April 29), and a program of choral works to include the rarely heard 1937 radio cantata The Company of Heaven and the premiere of Andy Vores’s newly commissioned Natural Selection, with texts by Darwin, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and Christina Rossetti, and melodies supplied by the students at the Neighborhood House Charter School (Jordan Hall, May 8).
BENJAMIN ZANDER and the BOSTON PHILHARMONIC bring back golden-age cellist Natalia Gutman in Prokofiev’s Symphony-Concerto (April 23, 25, 26; 617.236.0999). The BOSTON CHAMBER MUSIC SOCIETY has three appealing concerts at Sanders Theatre (March 29, April 19, May 17; 617.349.0086).
Richard Pittman’s BOSTON MUSICA VIVA concludes its 40th season with “Lunar Eclipse”; there’s a new piece by Michael Gandolfi and one of the triggers of the entire modern movement, Schoenberg’s haunting Pierrot lunaire, with soprano Lucy Shelton (Tsai Center, May 1; 617.353.8724). Two terrific clarinettists, Katherine Matasy and Diane Heffner, are special guests with Scott Wheeler’s DINOSAUR ANNEX (Community Music Center of Boston, April 5; 617.895.8769).
The BOSTON EARLY MUSIC FESTIVAL presents the Tallis Scholars (St. Paul Church, Cambridge, April 3; 617.661.1812). BOSTON BAROQUE brings us Mozart and two Haydns (Jordan Hall, May 1-2; 617.484.9200). I’m eager to hear Sir Roger Norrington’s “Haydn in London” concert with the HANDEL AND HAYDN SOCIETY (Symphony Hall, April 24 + 26). At EMMANUEL CHURCH, there’s a free noontime series of Bach’s solo cello suites (Thursdays, through April 2; 617.536.3356). And Peggy Pearson’s WINSOR MUSIC unites Bach and Telemann with a new piece for the Boston Children’s Chorus by John Heiss (Follen Church, March 28; 781.863.2861.)