In 2018, the key players of San Diego’s classical music scene struck gold by collaborating with each other. Enlisting some 10 musical organizations in its month-long “It’s About Time Time” festival in January, the San Diego Symphony set a high bar of cooperation for the coming year, but other organizations readily took up the challenge with rewarding results.

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With the San Diego Symphony’s dazzling performance of Antonín Dvořák’s Sixth Symphony at Friday’s concert, Dvořák lovers in Copley Symphony Hall were no doubt left swooning. Guest conductor Johannes Debus led an exuberant yet skillfully shaped account of the composer’s one mature symphony that stubbornly remains in the shadow of his mighty Eighth Symphony and beloved Ninth—the “New World.”

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A significant advantage of conductor Edo de Waart’s frequent guest appearances with the San Diego Symphony is the array of new music he brings to Copley Symphony Hall. On Friday, October 12, he offered Mason Bates’ 2014 intriguing “Garages of the Valley” followed by Rachmaninoff’s “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini” with the brilliant pianist Joyce Yang.

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