PSYWE Season Finale
After opening the season with John Philip Sousa's march for the inauguration of President Garfield, Pacific Symphony Youth Wind Ensemble closes the season with another piece by the American march king, composed for the same president's funeral. The program also includes "Variations on America" by Charles Ives and a "Suite of Old American Dances" by Robert Russell Bennett.
Admission is free, but tickets are required. Seating is general admission.
PSYO Season Finale
Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra's season finale features the two tied-for-first-place winners of our annual PSYO Concerto Competition. The program opens with selected movements from the Glazunov and Sibelius Violin Concertos, and closes with the ever-popular "An American in Paris" by George Gershwin.
Admission is free, but tickets are required. Seating is general admission. This free concert is SOLD OUT. A limited number of standby tickets will be available on the night of the concert on a first-come, first-served basis.
Gramophone places pianist Boris Giltburg “among the truly memorable Rachmaninoff interpreters, an elect including Moiseiwitsch, Horowitz, Kappel, Richter and Cliburn. Giltburg’s originality stems from a convergence of heart and mind, served by immaculate technique and motivated by a deep and abiding love for one of the 20th century’s greatest composer-pianists.”
Pacific Coast Wine Festival
The 11th annual Pacific Coast Wine Festival will be a sensational wine auction and gourmet, wine-paired dinner, featuring extraordinary wine tasting of exceptional wines from the premier wine producing regions of the world. Imaginative silent-auction offerings include fine wines that range from cult and storied artisanal wines to wines that need no introduction, luxury goods and fine dining experiences and travel opportunities. The live auction features vintage and rare wine lots, wine-paired dinners and extraordinary travel opportunities
Saturday Night Fever - Music of the Bee Gees
In the hands of Stayin' Alive, the worlds’ #1 tribute to the Bee Gees, the quintessential pop culture icons of the 1970s live again! With expert harmonies and undeniable groove, powerful vocals recreate the sound that defined a generation — from blockbusters like “Stayin’ Alive,” “How Deep is Your Love” and “Night Fever” to early hits like “To Love Somebody” and “Massachusetts.”
A Hero's Life
Anne Akiko Meyers is one of today’s premier violinists and has been described by the Los Angeles Times as a performer of “vigorous mastery, unflinching technical skills and stylish elegance.” She joins the orchestra to perform Lauridsen's ethereal “O Magnum Mysterium” and Ravel's rhapsodic “Tzigane.” Then, Concertmaster-Designate Dennis Kim will be featured in “A Hero's Life” (Ein Heldenleben), Strauss' autobiographical tone poem depicting confidence, unrest, the battle of life, love and serenity. Enjoy image magnification on our big screens during the concert for a closer look at the artists!
Music Director Carl St.Clair and Pacific Symphony take a closer look at Richard Strauss' monumental tone poem, exploring how the work was both a nod to the past and a herald of the future. This autobiographical work features Concertmaster-Designate Dennis Kim. The concert opens with Lauridsen's ethereal “O Magnum Mysterium” and Ravel's rhapsodic “Tzigane” played by Anne Akiko Meyers, one of today’s premier violinists and a performer of “vigorous mastery, unflinching technical skills and stylish elegance” (Los Angeles Times). Enjoy image magnification on our big screens during the concert for a closer look at the artists!
Brass Transit: Music of Chicago
TIMELESS CLASSICS THAT DEFINE GENERATIONS
Celebrate the Fourth with the music of Chicago, known as the “rock and roll band with horns.” With hits like “You’re the Inspiration,” “If You Leave Me Now,” and “Hard to Say I’m Sorry” you’ll be swept away by the melodies that make this band such a beloved classic. To cap off the evening, sing along to your favorite patriotic tunes as we salute our armed forces and thrill to a sizzling fireworks show.
E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial: In Concert
FILM WITH ORCHESTRA
Don’t miss Steven Spielberg’s cinematic masterpiece E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial with John Williams’ Academy Award®-winning score performed live to picture, and experience the magic once more.
TM & © Universal Studios.
END THE SUMMER WITH A BANG!
No SummerFest is complete without Pacific Symphony performing Tchaikovsky’s thrilling “1812” overture, complete with live cannons and brilliant fireworks. You’ll enjoy this famous romantic composer’s greatest hits along with his memorable Piano Concerto No. 1. You won’t want to miss it!
Rach 3 & Boléro
An opening night celebration that immerses you in the virtuosity of the solo musician, both on the piano and in the orchestra. The brilliant Olga Kern returns to Orange County with the “Mount Everest” of piano concertos, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3. And be amazed by the artistry of solo Pacific Symphony musicians as they sweep you away with music from Mozart and Ravel.
The brilliant Olga Kern returns to Orange County with the “Mount Everest” of piano concertos, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3. And be amazed by Ravel’s hypnotic Boléro.
Television, film and Broadway star Vanessa Williams joins Pacific Symphony in an opening night celebration performing songs that span her impressive career such as “Dreamin,” “Save the Best for Last,” “Love Is” and more.
The French Connection
Immerse yourself in the sound and color of 19th century French romantic chamber works. Journey through a trio of sonatas as you experience a range of instrumental textures including violin, flute, harp and bassoon. Enjoy coffee, tea and pastries in the intimate coffee-house atmosphere of the Samueli Theater.
Bernstein @ 100
Feel the joy and emotion of one of the greatest 20th-century composers — an American treasure and mentor of Music Director Carl St.Clair —through works like Chichester Psalms, combining Broadway-inspired melodies with sacred texts for chorus and orchestra and Serenade, a symbolic, lyrical work scored for solo violin, strings, harp and percussion.
The Wizard’s Spellbook
Hocus pocus, alakazam! Join us for a spellbinding Halloween celebration that includes music from Fantasia and Harry Potter, as well as The Conductor’s Spellbook, an exciting and interactive new work by composer Paul Dooley that teaches about the instruments of the orchestra. Come dressed in costume and don’t forget your wand and broomstick!
Dvořák’s New World Symphony
Carl St.Clair uses Dvořák’s popular symphony to explore three historic links between the United States and the Czech people. First, Dvořák’s remarkable journey to the United States helped to identity a unique American voice. Some 25 years later, America played a central role in the creation of a democratic Czechoslovakia. Today, a new Orange County institution, Pangea World, explores and expands the wealth of knowledge between nations.
The Wonderful Music of Oz
Follow the yellow brick road on a musical journey celebrating all things Oz! Joined by bewitching vocalists and the Hollywood sound of the Symphony, three singers interpret favorites from the hit Broadway show, “Wicked,” the dazzling reimagining film, “The Wiz,” and of course the 1939 classic film.
Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto
Danish composer Carl Nielsen described his Symphony No. 4, “The Inextinguishable,” as a metaphor for “the fundamental life-force of music.” Dive into this dynamic tour de force that features an explosive introduction and a dueling timpani finale. Violinist Philippe Quint returns with Tchaikovsky’s delightful Violin Concerto and the overture to one of the most famous operas, Mozart’s Don Giovanni, opens this immersive program.
A dazzling reimagining of the traditional Tchaikovsky classic, Duke Ellington’s interpretation of The Nutcracker will jazz up your holiday! Enjoy reinvented favorites like “Sugar Rum Cherry” and “Dance of the Floreadors.” German pianist Markus Groh returns with Brahms’ dramatic Second Piano Concerto and Vaughan Williams’ sacred Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis introduce this festive program.
Nutcracker for Kids
Visions of sugarplums and beautiful ballerinas will dance in your head after seeing Tchaikovsky’s delightful Christmas ballet, performed in a condensed 45-minute version created just for kids. This annual favorite finishes with a grand finale sing-along and a jolly visit from Santa himself!
Handel's Glorious Messiah
A beloved holiday tradition, Handel’s celebrated oratorio — with its blazing trumpets, thundering timpani and spectacular “Hallelujah!” chorus — provides a moment during the busy season to experience reflection, renewal and joy.
Christmas with Jackie Evancho
Come celebrate the most wonderful time of the year as teenage superstar Jackie Evancho performs some of the most memorable classics of the season including hits from her holiday album and more.
Chopin's Piano Concerto
Technically his second piano concerto (he wrote two in one year during his late teens), Chopin’s Concerto in E minor is a work that takes what the melodic composer did best – compose deeply expressive melodies – and puts it in the hands of a virtuoso soloist and orchestra. Prokofiev’s last symphony and Mussorgsky’s macabre Night on Bald Mountain accompany this unforgettable program.
The Magic Flute - Opera for Kids
Mozart’s musical fairy tale, with its imaginative setting and spectacular music, is brought to life in a special version designed just for you and your family! Fantastical life-size puppets, talented professional singers and special guests from Chapman University join Pacific Symphony to bring this classic opera to life!
Inspired by the legendary folk stories of “A Thousand and One Nights, “Scheherazade” tells the story of a beautiful young bride who must use her charm as a storyteller to save herself from the wrath of a jealous sultan. Also featured are Bernstein’s “Slava!” and Shostakovich’s high voltage Cello Concerto No. 1 — both written for legendary cellist Mstislav Rostropovich.
Part violin concerto, part symphonic poem, “Scheherazade” tells the story of a beautiful young bride who must use her charm as a storyteller to save herself from the wrath of a jealous sultan. Come and be immersed in the mythical sounds of this sweeping masterpiece.
Lunar New Year for Kids
Join Pacific Symphony for a special fun-filled Lunar New Year concert celebrating the Year of the Pig! Together we will explore the legends and stories through a musical feast of Eastern and Western music as we celebrate this joyous annual festival observed by many Asian cultures here in Orange County and across the world!
Chinese New Year
Join us for Pacific Symphony’s annual festivities honoring the Lunar New Year! Celebrating the Year of the Pig, this performance is sure to sell out once again as audiences from across our communities come together to feast on a colorful presentation of Eastern and Western music and dance.
Valentine's Day with Kenny G
Sultry, sweet sounds of saxophone superstar Kenny G meld with the full orchestra when Pacific Symphony delivers a romantic Valentine’s evening of music. By grafting elements of R&B, pop and Latin to his smooth jazz foundation, Kenny G is one of the most iconic and best-selling instrumentalists of all time.
Puccini’s Madame Butterfly tells the story of a young naïve Japanese geisha who believes that her love for a handsome American naval officer is eternal. With its lush score and heartbreaking arias, it is a timeless tale that will stir your emotions.
Bach is Beautiful
Bach’s serene Goldberg Variations has been described as both a beautiful keyboard work and a “Rubik’s Cube of invention and architecture.” There are over 300 recordings of the work, many in unusual arrangements. Conductor David Robertson’s striking arrangement for string quartet and piano receives its world premiere at this performance! Enjoy coffee, tea and pastries in the intimate coffee-house atmosphere of the Samueli Theater.
Leslie Odom, Jr.
Best known for his Tony and Grammy Award-winning performance as Aaron Burr in the original cast of Broadway’s “Hamilton” and his part in the musical TV series, “Smash,” Leslie Odom, Jr. joins the Symphony with a specially curated selection of Broadway and jazz hits including Jerome Kern’s “Look for the Silver Lining” and Nat King Cole’s “I Know That You Know.”
Mendelssohn's "Italian" Symphony
Inspired by his travels to Venice, Rome, Bologna and Florence, Mendelssohn’s symphony evokes imagery of Mediterranean sunshine, famous architecture and the rustic landscapes that make Italy so iconic. And be inspired by an arrangement of the Adagio from Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 16 and Bruch’s profoundly virtuosic Violin Concerto.
Nowruz: Persian New Year
Celebrate Nowruz, the Persian New Year, with Pacific Symphony! A traditional festival that marks the beginning of spring, Nowruz is a time to celebrate the “rebirth of nature” and wash away the past. Homayoun Shajarian and brothers Sohrab and Tahmoures Pournazeri join the symphony for a concert that unites cultures through the power of music.
A Space Odyssey
Famous as part of the soundtrack to 2001: A Space Odyssey, Strauss’ Also Sprach Zarathustra elicits wonder about our vast universe. Former Composer-in- Residence Michael Daugherty offers a suitable prelude — a new work celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Mozart’s cheerful Piano Concerto No. 23, with Finnish pianist Juho Pohjonen, is the sublime centerpiece.
3…2…1…liftoff! Launch into the wonders of outer space as you tour the moon, the planets and beyond with music from Star Wars, Star Trek and 2001: A Space Odyssey. Featuring NASA space footage, Pacific Symphony is joined by special guests, the Pacific Symphony Youth Orchestra on this exciting intergalactic adventure!
Defiant Requiem tells the story of the courageous Jewish prisoners in the Terezín Concentration Camp during World War II who performed Verdi’s stunning Requiem Mass, despite experiencing the depths of human degradation. Combining magnificent music with video testimony from survivors, this powerful and dramatic work will move you.
Music of Queen
Epic rock riffs and majestic symphonic strings will come together in perfect harmony as Pacific Symphony pays tribute to one of the greatest bands of all time. Joined by high energy band and vocalists Windborne, the Symphony performs hits such as “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “We Are the Champions,” “Killer Queen,” “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” “Another One Bites the Dust” and many more!
Villegas: Master of Guitar
Be swept away by the romantic charm of the guitar as Pacific Symphony embarks on a special celebration of this popular instrument. A festival curated by the “master of guitar” Pablo Villegas takes you on a journey to Spain with Joaquín Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuaz, inspired by the real-life royal Spanish palace.
Ravel's "The Child & the Magic Spells"
Considered one of Maurice Ravel’s masterpieces, L’enfant et les sortilèges takes the perspective of a young boy who encounters magical forces. Opening the program is Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, a symphonic fairy tale for children that illustrates the characterful sounds of the orchestra and features unique visual performers, the Magic Circle Mime Company.
To Tell a Story
Enjoy this unique theatrical program featuring Alan Ridout’s “Ferdinand the Bull,” a musical narration of Munro Leaf’s enchanting picture book and Igor Stravinsky’s “The Solider’s Tale,” a parable about a solider who deals with the devil. A lyrical work by Brahms and a poetic Pohádka by Janácek complete this delightful program. Enjoy coffee, tea and pastries in the intimate coffee-house atmosphere of the Samueli Theater.
My Fair Lady in Concert
Enjoy Lerner and Loewe’s elegant and enchanting musical performed live in a semi-staged concert setting! One of America’s favorite American musicals, “My Fair Lady” tells the romantic story of a young Cockney flower seller and a linguistics professor who is determined to transform her into his idea of a “proper lady.”
Symphony of a Thousand
A tidal wave of sound, Mahler’s “Symphony of a Thousand” is a deeply immersive work that pushes the sonic boundaries of the orchestra and choir. Written as an expression of confidence in the eternal human spirit, Mahler’s Eighth Symphony is an exhilarating experience you cannot miss.
“On the threshold of my old workshop, the Spiritus Creator took hold of me and shook me and drove me on for the next eight weeks until my greatest work was done," said Gustav Mahler about his “Symphony of a Thousand.”
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