The Fresno State Symphony Orchestra, directed by Dr. Thomas Loewenheim, will present its final concert of the season at 8 p.m. Saturday, April 28, in the Department of Music Concert Hall. The concert, titled “The Emperor Concerto,” will feature the internationally acclaimed pianist Jeremy Denk.

Denk is also the featured pianist at the Philip Lorenz Keyboard Series the night before.

Winner of a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and the Avery Fisher Prize, Denk was recently elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Denk returns frequently to Carnegie Hall and has recently performed with the Chicago Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and Cleveland Orchestra.

Denk will perform what some consider as Beethoven’s greatest piano concerto, his fifth named “Emperor.” It was composed early in 1809, in part while the French army under Napoleon laid siege to Vienna. That conflict perhaps influenced the concerto’s often militaristic style, but the origin of its nickname “Emperor” is not known.

The orchestra will close the concert with Sergei Prokofiev’s monumental Symphony No. 5. The work was written in the summer of 1944 in the midst of World War II, and its premiere performance had to be briefly halted due to celebratory cannon fire outside the concert hall, because the Russian army had just scored a resounding victory on the River Vistula.

Ticket cost: $15 general, $10 employees and seniors, $5 students. Click here for additional information.