Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Pacific Symphony Presents BEETHOVEN'S EROICA This Month


This concert is part of the Symphony's 2021-22 Hal & Jeanette Segerstrom Family Foundation Classical Series.

Pacific Symphony Presents BEETHOVEN'S EROICA This Month

Pacific Symphony's 2021-22 Classical Season is officially in full swing after an exciting opening weekend, marking the orchestra's return to live music in the concert hall. The second program in Pacific Symphony's season features two great Romantic masterworks and opens with an exciting world premiere by contemporary composer Frank Ticheli.

"Beethoven's Eroica" takes place Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 14-16 at 8 p.m. in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall; doors open at 6:45 p.m. Single tickets start at $25. A preview talk with Jake Sustaita begins at 7 p.m. This concert is part of the Symphony's 2021-22 Hal & Jeanette Segerstrom Family Foundation Classical Series. For more information or to purchase tickets, please call (714) 755-5799 or visit

The Friday night performance will be live-streamed and the recording will be available to all ticket holders for online viewing for 30 days. [How do ticket-holders access?]

Frank Ticheli's All the World's a Stage is as playful, joyful and novel a work as you're likely to hear in a concert hall. This piece d'occasion was commissioned by Pacific Symphony in celebration of Carl St. Clair's 30th anniversary season as the orchestra's music director. Ticheli, currently professor of composition at University of Southern California's Thornton School of Music, was composer-in-residence with Pacific Symphony from 1991 through 1998. By now-as he comments in his note on the piece-"Carl is a dear friend of nearly 40 years."

In his compositional note, Ticheli comments: "All the World's a Stage takes its name from the oft-quoted line from Shakespeare's well known play, As You Like It-"All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players." For my piece, the "stage" is literally the entire performance hall. The audience participates with the orchestra in various ways-making gentle wind sounds and whistling effects, snapping fingers to a specified rhythm, singing Shakespeare's words set to an original melody, and so on."

Ticheli continues, "The audience participates mostly in the beginning and end of the piece, whereas during the faster-paced middle section they are able to sit back and enjoy the music. During this middle section, the energy is quite festive and dance-like. A boppy ostinato, first introduced by the bass clarinet and contrabassoon, serves as the main idea for the entire section. Near the end, as the music builds in intensity, one may hear a hint of the wild energy conjured in the 'Mambo' from Bernstein's West Side Story. Bernstein was Carl's beloved conducting teacher, and it seemed fitting to channel a bit of his most joyous music (although without ever quoting it directly)."

Variations on a Rococo Theme could be considered Tchaikovsky's unofficial cello concerto. It is a work of elegance and virtuosity. Cellist Gabriel Martins, winner of the 2020 Concert Artists Guild - Young Classical Artists Trust Grand Prize and the 2020 Sphinx Competition, makes his debut with Pacific Symphony at these concerts. According to esteemed cellist Ralph Kirshbaum, Martins has "revealed heart, passion, intellect and a finely-nuanced palette of colors in a compelling manner worthy of a seasoned artist."

Beethoven's thrilling "Eroica" Symphony-a work so innovative and influential it changed the course of music history-closes the program. Leonard Bernstein said the first two movements are "perhaps the greatest two movements in all symphonic music." The symphony's second movement has been played as a funeral march at state funerals, memorial services and commemorations including to mourn the deaths of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and President John F. Kennedy. One of the Beethoven's most celebrated works, it marks a true milestone in classical music.

Artists, programs, prices and dates are subject to change.

Related Articles View More San Francisco Stories

Buy at the Theatre Shop

T-Shirts, Mugs, Phone Cases & More

More Hot Stories For You