Richmond Symphony Announces 60th Anniversary Season

Richmond Symphony Announces 60th Anniversary Season

Music Director Steven Smith and Executive Director David Fisk are pleased to announce the 2017-18 Season of the Richmond Symphony. The 60th Anniversary Season features a great line-up of concerts, events and world-class soloists, beginning with a special Opening Night concert with pianist Lang Lang.

"I am very excited about our 60th anniversary season, which brings together numerous celebratory features. World-famous soloists like Lang Lang, favorite orchestral show pieces, topically important and thought-provoking themes, Pops and LolliPops loaded with fun; all make up programs that blend styles and eras. This wide range of activity, both in the Carpenter Theatre and throughout our community highlights the reach of the Richmond Symphony in its next generation." says Music Director Steven Smith.

Richmond Symphony Executive Director David Fisk adds "The Richmond Symphony's 60th Anniversary Season is designed to be a year-long festival of music at its finest, performed in settings that celebrate past, present and future. The artists featured are some of the best in their field in the world, opening with the incomparable pianist Lang Lang, including Time for Three on our 60th birthday, and closing with a commission from Richmond's own Mason Bates, in a world première performance. In showcasing RVA as a city of great music of all kinds, we're delighted to partner for the first time with The Broadberry to present some stellar Richmond musicians onstage with the Richmond Symphony as part of our Pops Series, as we revel in our ongoing partnerships with other Richmond arts institutions including VMFA, VCUArts, the Richmond Ballet and Virginia Opera. We thank the signature sponsors of our Diamond Anniversary festivities - especially Altria and the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation - and welcome all Richmond to join us at the Carpenter Theatre, under our Big Tent, and in venues around town for a season that will be talked about for many years to come."

Highlights of the season include:

An Opening Night concert featuring world-renowned pianist Lang Lang on Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017 at 8pm, presented in association with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

A concert celebrating the Richmond Symphony's 60th Anniversary with Time for Three on Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017 at 8pm, in partnership with VCU Arts Department of Music.

Mason Bates: World Première Commission with the Richmond Symphony Chorus on Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 8pm.

On his new work, Mason Bates writes "Virginia has always existed at the crossroads of American history, from Native Americans to colonialists to soldiers in the Revolution and the Civil War. This large new work explores the magnificent tapestry of history that has shaped the state and its people, featuring a setting of texts that illustrate events that range from the inspiring to the frightening, from the beautiful to the visceral. Scored for chorus, orchestra, and electronics, the piece is shaped by Bates' upbringing and musical education in Richmond, where he studied choral music and composition at St. Christopher's School."

A special collaboration with The Broadberry titled "Broadberry Presents: RVA LIVE!" with artists Matthew E. White, Natalie Prass, Tim Barry, Bio Ritmo and Clair Morgan on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 at 8pm. "The idea of RVA Live! is something I've been contemplating for some time and I am excited that the right partnership has presented itself." says The Broadberry's Lucas Fritz. "With the help and guidance from the good people at the Richmond Symphony, it is finally happening. It is truly an honor to help curate such a special night of music with the talented artists involved. I had the pleasure of working on Matthew E. White and Natalie Prass' debut albums here in town. All the other bands I hold near and dear to my heart as they've really helped make The Broadberry and The Camel the wonderful venues that they have become over the past eight years. Bringing together all the different genres on one stage, especially Carpenter Theatre with the Richmond Symphony, is going to be truly amazing."

As part of the 60 th Anniversary celebration, the Symphony will present The Music of Billy Joel featuring Michael Cavanaugh, the artist hand-picked by Billy Joel to become the next "Piano Man" on Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 at 8pm.

Other Altria Masterworks concerts will feature Mozart's Mass in C Minor with the Richmond Symphony Chorus; A New Year in Vienna with the Virginia Opera Emerging Artists and Richmond Symphony Chorus; Remembering 1968: A Tribute to MLK with University Choruses from across Virginia and members of the Richmond Symphony Chorus; Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, Ravel's Piano Concerto in G Major featuring pianist Ian Parker, Dvo?ák's New World Symphony and Brahms' Concerto for Violin and Cello in A Minor featuring Richmond Symphony musicians Daisuke Yamamoto (violin, Concertmaster) and Neal Cary (Principal cello).

Additional Symphony Pops concerts include Motown's Greatest Hits with the Motortown All-Stars featuring music from The Temptations, The Miracles, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder and our annual holiday favorite "Let It Snow!" with the return of conductor Erin R. Freeman and a return appearance by Susan Greenbaum.

The Union Bank & Trust LolliPops season begins with Superhero Halloween, a concert featuring music based on superheroes; the annual family tradition and beloved animated film The Snowman; An American in Paris with The School of Richmond Ballet; and the return of Really Inventive Stuff's Michael Boudewyns for Peter and the Wolf.

After a second season of sold-out performances, the Symphony will team up again with Hardywood Park Craft Brewery for one-hour, Thursday evening Rush Hour concerts.

Randolph-Macon College will continue to host the Metro Collection series. This season features guest soloists Molly Sharp (viola) and Zachary Guiles (trombone), plus popular chamber pieces from Beethoven, Clarke, Salieri, Mozart, Schubert, Handel, Prokofiev and many more.

The Casual Fridays Series is the perfect start to the weekend. Relax with a drink and let the evening's host and conductor take you behind the scenes of the music. Afterward, head to an exclusive happy hour with Symphony musicians.

(Full list of concerts and dates listed below)

Leading the artistic team this year will be Steven Smith, the Lewis T. Booker Music Director Chair; ChiaHsuan Lin, the Associate Conductor and Jack & Mary Ann Frable Associate Conductor Chair; and Dr. Erin R. Freeman, Director of the Richmond Symphony Chorus and James Erb Choral Chair.

To ensure that the Symphony is accessible to people of all ages, child tickets to Altria Masterworks and Casual Friday performances are free to individuals 17 and under. (Does not include Opening Night with Lang Lang on September 14, 2017.)

Altria Masterworks Series The Altria Masterworks series features celebrated guest artists and the great works from the classical repertoire. All Altria Masterworks concerts take place at the Dominion Arts Center's Carpenter Theatre. We are grateful for the support from our Masterworks series sponsor Altria.

Masterworks 1

Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017 at 8pm
Opening Night with Lang Lang
Steven Smith, conductor
Cabell Fund for Artistic Excellence
Presented in association with Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
Sponsored by Covington Travel
Kay Theater Set for Orchestra (Overture)
Strauss Ein Heldenleben (A Hero's Life)
Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 5 (Emperor)

Masterworks 2
Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017 at 8pm
60th Anniversary with Time for Three
Steven Smith, conductor
Rennolds Memorial Concert
In partnership with VCU Arts Department of Music
Guest Artists sponsored by RiverFront Investment Group
Stucky Jeu de timbres
Chris Brubeck Travels in Time for Three
Bartók Concerto for Orchestra

Masterworks 3 Saturday,
Nov. 11, 2017 at 8pm and Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017 at 3pm
Mozart: Mass in C Minor
Steven Smith, conductor
Richmond Symphony Chorus
Wagner - Tristan und Isolde: Prelude
Tchaikovsky - Romeo and Juliet Overture-Fantasy
Mozart Mass in C Minor, K. 427

Masterworks 4 Saturday,
Jan. 13, 2018 at 8pm and Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018 at 3pm
A New Year in Vienna
Steven Smith, conductor
Virginia Opera Emerging Artists
Richmond Symphony Chorus

Suppé - Poet and Peasant Overture
Mahler - Excerpts from Des Knaben Wunderhorn
Strauss, Jr. - Overture to The Gypsy Baron Voices of Spring
Pleasure Train Polka
On the Beautiful Blue Danube

Masterworks 5 Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018 at 8pm and Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018 at 3pm Remembering 1968: A Tribute to MLK Steven Smith, conductor Members of Richmond Symphony Chorus University Choruses from across Virginia.

Mary Watkins - Excerpts from Five Movements in Color
Jonathan Bailey - Holland Equality
Beethoven - Choral Fantasy
Moore - Excerpts from Scenes from the Life of a Martyr

Masterworks 6 Saturday,
March 10, 2018 at 8pm
Pictures at an Exhibition
Danail Rachev, guest conductor
Ian Parker, piano
Florence Robertson Givens Guest Artist

Britten - Sinfonia da requiem, Op. 20
Ravel - Piano Concerto in G Major
Mussorgsky - Pictures at an Exhibition

Masterworks 7
Saturday, April 21, 2018 at 8pm and Sunday, April 22, 2018 at 3pm
New World Symphony
Steven Smith, conductor
Daisuke Yamamoto, violin
Neal Cary, cello
Thomas P. Bryan, Jr. Guest Artists

Kaprálová - Suita Rustica
Brahms - Concerto for Violin and Cello in A Minor, Op. 102
Dvo?ák - Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95 (From the New World)

Masterworks 8
Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 8pm
Mason Bates: World Première
Steven Smith, conductor
Richmond Symphony Chorus

Honegger - Pacific 231
Mason Bates World Première Commission
Tobias Picker Old and Lost Rivers
Debussy La Mer

Symphony Pops Series The Symphony Pops Series combines the excitement of a live orchestra with the best in popular music.

All Symphony Pops concerts take place at the Dominion Arts Center's Carpenter Theatre.

Symphony Pops 1
Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017 at 8pm
The Broadberry Presents: RVA Live!
with Matthew E. White, Natalie Prass, Tim Barry, Bio Ritmo and Clair Morgan

The Richmond Symphony shares the concert stage with some of RVA's favorite artists at the Carpenter Theatre. It's a night of live music you won't want to miss!

Symphony Pops 2
Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017 at 8pm and Sunday, Dec. 3, 2017 at 3pm
Let It Snow!
Erin R. Freeman, conductor
Richmond Symphony Chorus
Susan Greenbaum, soloist
Sponsored by Hunton & Williams

Celebrate the holidays with a concert featuring the sounds of the season! Join the Richmond Symphony and Richmond Symphony Chorus for this magical holiday tradition the whole family will love.

Symphony Pops 3
Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 at 8pm
Music of Billy Joel
featuring Michael Cavanaugh
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor
Sponsored by Keiter

Hand-picked by Billy Joel to become the next "Piano Man," Michael Cavanaugh joins the Richmond Symphony to perform the superstar's hits.

Symphony Pops 4
Saturday, March 24, 2018 at 8pm
Motown's Greatest Hits
with the Motortown All-Stars
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor
Sponsored by The London Company

Get ready for a show jam-packed with timeless Motown grooves. The Motortown All-Stars will have you dancing and singing along to the greatest hits from The Temptations, The Miracles, The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye and Stevie Wonder.

Union Bank & Trust LolliPops Series The Union Bank & Trust LolliPops Series is designed with the whole family in mind. Performances include concerts that entertain, educate and are fun for children of all ages. All Union Bank & Trust LolliPops concerts take place at the Dominion Arts Center's Carpenter Theatre. Pre-concert festivals feature family activities including the popular instrument petting zoo and take place in Rhythm Hall one hour prior to the concert. Union Bank & Trust LolliPops concerts are now Sensory-Friendly and designed to create a performance experience where all audiences are welcome, including those with autism or other sensory sensitivities. We are grateful for the support from our LolliPops series sponsor Union Bank & Trust.

LolliPops 1
Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017 at 11am
A Superhero Halloween
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor

Dress in your favorite heroic costume and get ready for high-powered fun with the Richmond Symphony and the music of superheroes.

LolliPops 2 Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017 at 11am
The Snowman (animated film)
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor

Continue this holiday tradition with the Richmond Symphony! This charming animated film tells the story of a young boy's magical friendship with a snowman. Enjoy other holiday favorites during this program as well.

LolliPops 3
Saturday, Jan. 20, 2018 at 11am
An American in Paris
with The School of Richmond Ballet
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor

The Richmond Symphony and The School of Richmond Ballet team up to bring you this Gershwin classic. Kids will be mesmerized by the stunning combination of music and dance as they follow the story of Jerry and his adventures in Paris.

LolliPops 4
Saturday, March 17, 2018 at 11am
Peter and the Wolf
with Really Inventive Stuff's Michael Boudewyns
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor

Boys like Peter are not afraid of wolves! Prokofiev's timeless tale of boy vs. wolf comes to life in Really Inventive Stuff's signature performance. This concert is a perfect introduction to music and the instruments of the orchestra.

Casual Fridays

It's the perfect start to your Friday night! Relax with a drink and let the evening's host, along with the conductor, take you behind the scenes of the music. Afterward, head to an exclusive happy hour with Symphony musicians!

Casual Fridays 1
Friday, Sept. 15, 2017 at 6:30pm
Ein Heldenleben (A Hero's Life)

Casual Fridays 2
Friday, Oct. 27, 2017 at 6:30pm
An Evening with Time for Three

Casual Fridays 3
Friday, March 9, 2018 at 6:30pm
Pictures at an Exhibition

Casual Fridays 4
Friday, May 11, 2018 at 6:30pm
Mason Bates: World Première Rush Hour at Hardywood

We're teaming up with Hardywood Park Craft Brewery again this season to continue the popular Thursday night Rush Hour concerts! Grab your favorite craft beer, hit the food trucks and enjoy a laid back concert at 6:30pm in Hardywood's tasting room.

Rush Hour 1 - Oct. 5, 2017 at 6:30pm
Rush Hour 2 - Jan. 18, 2018 at 6:30pm
Rush Hour 3 - Feb. 22, 2018 at 6:30pm
Rush Hour 4 - May 3, 2018 at 6:30pm

Metro Collection The Metro Collection offers audiences fantastic classical music in an intimate setting. Concerts feature smaller scale works from the classical repertoire and newer pieces by contemporary composers. Richmond Symphony musicians are often featured soloists. All Metro Collection concerts take place in Blackwell Auditorium at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA.

Metro Collection 1
Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017 at 3pm
Steven Smith, conductor
Molly Sharp, viola
Beethoven - Coriolan Overture
Clarke - Concerto for Viola and Orchestra
Davies - Carolisima for Chamber Orchestra
Haydn Symphony - No. 83 (Le Poule)

Metro Collection 2
Sunday, Jan. 21, 2018 at 3pm
Steven Smith, conductor
Zachary Guiles, trombone
Salieri Sinfonia (Veneziana)
Norman Bolter IOURS (for trombone and chamber orchestra)
Crawford Seeger Andante for Strings Rissolty Rossolty
Mozart Symphony No. 38, K. 504 (Prague)

Metro Collection 3
Sunday, Feb. 25, 2018 at 3pm
Steven Smith, conductor
Schubert Overture (in the Italian Style)
Roussel Concerto for Small Orchestra
Handel Water Music, Suite No. 2
Walton Façade Suite No. 2
Arturo Marquez Danzon No. 4
Milhaud Le Boeuf sur le toit

Metro Collection 4
Sunday, May 6, 2018 at 3pm
Chia-Hsuan Lin, Conductor
J.C. Bach Symphony in B-flat Major, Op. 18, No. 2
Wagner Siegfried Idyll
J.S. Bach Orchestral Suite No. 1 Prokofiev Symphony No. 1 (Classical)

Special Concerts

Friday, December 1, 2017 - 7:30pm
Handel's Messiah
Chia-Hsuan Lin, conductor
Richmond Symphony Chorus

Don't miss the Richmond Symphony and Richmond Symphony Chorus performing Handel's masterwork, a holiday classic that has delighted Richmonders for generations.

What Do You Think? Tell Us In The Comments!


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