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Press Release


Jean Oelrich
Director of Marketing & Communications
(714) 876-2380

Pacific Symphony’s Opening Night party—“Ode To Joy”— surrounds “Beethoven’s Ninth” concert, while honoring the orchestra’s exceptional musicians with cocktails, dinner and champagne

Orange County, Calif. — September 04, 2015

The spotlight shines brightly on the brilliant artistry of Pacific Symphony’s musicians, when the orchestra kicks off its 2015-16 season with an Opening Night party appropriately called “Ode to Joy” to encompass the spirit of the evening. With an elegant dinner at The Westin South Coast Plaza, the Symphony’s Board of Directors pay tribute to the highly accomplished men and women of the Symphony who, through their great talent and passion, inspire joy and hope with each performance onstage and in the Orange County community. The elegant black-tie affair takes place on Thursday, Oct. 1, and surrounds the opening night concert featuring Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9—a thrilling fusion of orchestra and voice, led by Music Director Carl St.Clair. In addition to the musicians, special evening honorees include Sally Segerstrom Andrews and Toby Andrews, Sandy Segerstrom Daniels, Susie and Steve Perry and Rae and Ted Segerstrom.

“We often speak of the orchestra as a whole, but our focus this year is on the musicians themselves and their superb artistic skills and talent,” says Opening Night Chair Jo Ellen Chatham. “The concert program includes Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy,’ which is so appropriate because joy is what our musicians inspire in us with every performance. They are especially important to the young people in our education programs and to those in our music and wellness programs who are in need of inspiration and renewal.”

The festivities begin at 5 p.m. with a stylish cocktail reception and delicious gourmet dinner inspired by the bounty of the harvest season and served in the Westin’s Plaza Ballroom.

Decor promises to dazzle in rich velvet and shimmer linens the shade of deep fall tones. After dinner, a procession of guests makes its way to the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall up the red carpet for the concert at 8 p.m. During intermission, party-goers are invited to an exclusive Box Circle Club reception one level up from the concert hall lobby. Post-concert, all are welcomed back to The Westin’s Terrace Pavilion for more entertainment, dessert and a champagne toast to the musicians who make it all possible.

The presenting sponsor for Opening Night is South Coast Plaza; musician sponsors are Jaguar, Land Rover, Aston Martin of Newport Beach. Individual seats are $500; tables for 10 may be purchased for $7,500-$25,000. For more information, please contact special events at (714) 876-2364 or email For more information about the concert or to purchase tickets for the concert only, call (714) 755-5799 or visit

Music Director St.Clair has attracted some of the nation’s finest musicians to Orange County to perform with Pacific Symphony. “Orchestra members range from those who have been with the Symphony from the very beginning to those musicians who have just recently graduated from some of the nation’s best music conservatories. Together on stage, they create a consistently polished sound that is unique and reflects the dynamic vitality of Orange County. Beyond the stage, Symphony musicians are involved in the community in a multitude of ways—from developing year-long relationships with elementary school students through the Class Act program, to teaching students in Santa Ana how to play the violin, to bringing specialized concerts to underserved communities in partnership with community agencies.

There is really no better way to showcase the musicians’ talent than with a concert featuring Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 and the powerhouse voices of Pacific Chorale. A hymn to human freedom and brotherhood, Beethoven’s final symphony culminates in a magnificent union between symphony and voice. The concert also features the highly anticipated unveiling of a brand new piece of music written for the Symphony by its composer-in-residence Narong Prangcharoen, titled “Beyond Land and Ocean.” The concert opens with a rare opportunity to hear “The Promise of Living” from Aaron Copland’s opera, “The Tender Land,” a choral piece with a similar message of thanksgiving and neighborly love.

“Opening Night events are designed to raise funds to support the Symphony, and the focus on the musicians of Pacific Symphony has generated a lot of excitement,” continues Chatham. “It is the perfect opportunity for the community to demonstrate its support not only for the Symphony, but for the incredibly talented musicians that continually inspire us with their artistic skills and abilities.”