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Oakland Symphony Announces 2018-19 Programming

Oakland Symphony Announces 2018-19 Programming

Oakland Symphony and Music Director and Conductor Michael Morgan announce programming for 2018-19 Season running October 12, 2018 - May 19, 2019. Concerts are at the Paramount Theatre in Oakland and other East Bay venues. Subscriptions for the 2018-2019 season are currently on sale and single tickets go on sale Monday, August 27at 10:00am PST. For information, to purchase subscriptions and single tickets, visit

This season, Oakland Symphony will explore the issues of today by remembering those lost in the tragic Ghost Ship Fire in 2016 and amplifying the voices of women across our musical landscape. Last season, the Symphony launched the groundbreaking performance series, Playlist, the annual concert inviting the major thinkers of our time to host and curate a concert, giving audiences unique insights into their passions.The first Playlist featured the musical selections from social commentator and host of CNN's United Shades of America,W. Kamau Bell. This season presents the second installment of Playlist featuring selections from Dolores Huerta, the Mexican-American labor leader and civil rights activist who, with Cesar Chavez, co-founded the United Farm Workers. President Obama honored her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012.

The season will also present time-honored composers from Rachmaninoff to Ellington, honor the rich cultural traditions of the African diaspora, and the season opens on Friday, October 12 with the audience choice winner, Shostakovich's powerful 5th Symphony.

Throughout the season, the Oakland Symphony will celebrate 100 years of musical innovation with works byMaestro Morgan's mentor and teacher, Leonard Bernstein, capping the season with an exuberant concert performance of West Side Storyon Friday, May 10, 2019.

"We are celebrating the Bernstein centennial throughout the season culminating with two of the biggest works, Songfestand West Side Story," says Morgan. "Bernstein would have heartily approved the inclusion of civil rights icon Dolores Huerta's Playliston a season honoring him. This orchestra celebrates our community's heroes both past and present."

2018-19 Concerts

All performances at Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oaklandexcept where noted.

Season Opening Concert

Friday, October 12, 2018, 8:00 pm, $25-90

The evening includes the Audience Choice Winner of Shostakovich's 5thSymphony, Rachmaninoff's Piano Concerto No. 2, and three dance episodes from Bernstein's On The Town. Canadian pianist Stewart Goodyear joins the Symphony for opening night.

Oakland Symphony Gala

Saturday, November 10, 2018, Rotunda Building, Oakland

For more information, contact Leslie Marks,

Requiem For Ghost Ship

Friday, November 16, 2018, 8:00 pm, $25-90

This evening is dedicated to the people lost in the tragic 2016 Ghost Ship Fire and is anchored by Richard Marriott's commission, Requiem For Ghost Ship, with guest cello soloist Matthew Linaman, Oakland Symphony's 2014 Young Artist Competition Winner. The program also includes Brahms' Requiem featuring the Oakland Symphony Chorus with Soprano Patricia Westley and Baritone Robert Sims. The evening will also feature Leonard Bernstein's "Take Care of this House" from the musical 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Youth Orchestra Fall Concert

Sunday, November 18, 2018, 2:00pm, Free, Castro Valley Center for the Arts

Led by Youth Orchestra Principal Conductor Omid Zoufonoun, the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra performs Saint-Saëns' Cello Concerto No. 1, Liszt's
Symphonic Poem No. 3, andStravinsky'sThe Firebird Suite.

Swing & Soul - Let Us Break Bread Together

Sunday, December 16, 2018, 4:00pm, $15-60

The Oakland Symphony's holiday concert features Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir, Mt. Eden High School Concert Choir, Oakland Symphony Chorus, and more. This year's concert honors Nina Simone and Fats Domino, both vital parts of our country's musical identity.

To Belong Here: Notes from the African Diaspora

Friday, January 25, 2019, 8:00pm, $25-90

This program presents Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint George, born to a plantation owner and a slave, who became a virtuoso violinist and composer - combining the folk songs of his childhood in Guadeloupe with the sounds of Mozart. Symphony No.3 by Florence Price,the first African-American woman to be recognized as a composer,will be performedas well as Duke Ellington's Harlem featuring Soprano Shawnette Sulker.

Sí, Se Puede, Dolores Huerta's Playlist

Friday, February 22, 2019, 8:00pm, $25-90

Oakland Symphony's groundbreaking performance series Playlistis a curated by some of the greatest thinkers of todaytogive listeners unique insights into theirpassions and take audiences on a musical journey to unexpected and unchartered territories. The first Playlistfeatured socio-political comedian, activist, and Emmy-winning host of CNN's United Shades of AmericaW. Kamau Bell. For the second Playlist, the Oakland Symphony welcomes to the Paramount Theatre, Dolores Huerta, the Mexican-American labor leader and civil rights activist who, with Cesar Chavez, co-foundedthe United Farm Workers. She coined the phrase Sí, Se Puede/Yes, We Can. President Obama honoredher with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012. Huerta's Playlist will present a wide range of her musical inspirations arranged and performed by Oakland Symphony and conducted by Michael Morgan with special guests.

Youth Orchestra Winter Concert

Sunday, February 24, 2019, 2:00pm, Free, San Leandro High School Performing Arts Center

Led by Youth Orchestra Principal Conductor Omid Zoufonoun, the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra performs Leonard Bernstein's CandideSuite and Luis Pastor's Cubanerías.

I Raise Up My Voice

Friday, March 22, 2019, 8:00pm, $25-90

Violinist Jessie Montgomery's comments on the Star Spangled Banner with inspiration from traditional symphonic works, African-American spirituals and the anthems of the United States, Mexico, and Puerto Rico. Also on the program, Louis Farrenc's 3rdSymphony from 1847 and Bernstein's Songfest,a musical journey through America as told through the words of 13 poets,performed by the San Francisco Opera Adler Fellows.

Oakland Symphony Chorus Spring Concert

Saturday, April 13, 2019, 8:00pm, 1st Congregational Church of Oakland

The Oakland Symphony Chorus celebrates its 60thAnniversary in 2019 and has been heralded as the symphony chorus of the East Bay. Under the leadership of Dr. Lynne Morrow, the Chorusis an auditioned, tuition-based choir that performs regularly with its partners, the Oakland Symphony and Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra, as well as commissioning new choral works.

West Side Story

Friday, May 10, 2019, 8:00pm, $25-90

Leonard Bernstein's beloved revision of Romeo and Juliet.Stunning songs from "Maria" to "Somewhere" will fill the Paramount Theatre alongside the snaps and jibes of the Sharks and Jets in this concert performance.

Youth Orchestra's Spring Concert

Sunday, May 19, 2:00pm, Free, El Cerrito High School

Led by Youth Orchestra Principal Conductor Omid Zoufonoun, the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra is recognized as an outstanding Bay Area music program receiving numerous awards from the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers. This concert is the culmination of the Orchestra'syearly projects and works.

Oakland Symphony Education Programs

The Symphony's MUSE Program is a multi-component music education and enrichment initiative that serves young people at public schools and community sites throughout Oakland. By providing these programs free to participants, the Symphony ensures that each year, 16,000 young people have access to a variety of music education and enrichment activities, regardless of their economic situation.

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