One last performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony today. Sunday afternoons are usually more casual, well maybe not this casual, but in any case, it seems an appropriate way to celebrate the close of of great Classical Season!
Pacific Symphony • Carl St.Clair, conductor Kelley Nassief - soprano • Susana Poretsky - mezzo-soprano • Chad Shelton - tenor • Kevin Deas - bass • Pacific Chorale - John Alexander, artistic director
TICHELI: Rest TICHELI: Radiant Voices BEETHOVEN: Symphony No. 9, “Choral” Preview Talk with composer Frank Ticheli at 7 p.m. Art Exhibit - OC Can You Create? In the lobby: an array of artwork by local artists who responded to the call for original expressions reflecting the numerous ways Beethoven’s Ninth has impacted humanity.
Matinee: St.Clair leads the Symphony in a performance and conversation for Classical Connections, “Beethoven’s Ninth Revealed,” on Sunday, June 3, at 3 p.m. After, enjoy a cup of coffee or tea and mingle with St.Clair and musicians for “Coffee Connections,” and a reception for “OC Can You Create?” artists.
Saturday, June 2 • 8:30 p.m.
Pacific Symphony, in association with Segerstrom Center for the Arts, presents the very first “Plazacast,” a live simulcast of Beethoven Ninth shown on the Center’s Arts Plaza during the June 2 concert starting at 9 p.m.;festivities begin at 8:30 p.m. Hosted by Classical KUSC’s Rich Capparela.
Celebrate Maestro St.Clair’s 60th birthday, the Center’s 25th anniversary and John Alexander’s 40th as artistic director of Pacific Chorale.
FREE and open to the public—no ticket required. Come early, bring chairs and picnic on the plaza, while enjoying a preview and live interviews with key guest artists—and a few surprises.
CLASSICAL SEASON ENDS WITH A FESTIVAL OF MUSIC FEATURING A FUSION OF MAGNIFICENT VOICES, SUBLIME SYMPHONIC SOUNDS
Beethoven’s crowning achievement, the epic and exquisite Symphony No. 9, “Choral”—featuring the soul-stirring “Ode to Joy,” which has thrilled listeners around the world for nearly two centuries—brings Pacific Symphony’s 2011-12 classical season to a memorable close. The concert, led by Music Director Carl St.Clair, features a monumental union of orchestra and voices that includes Pacific Chorale and four world-class opera singers—soprano Kelley Nassief; mezzo-soprano Susana Poretsky; tenor Chad Shelton; and bass Kevin Deas—who take on the florid and challenging solo passages in the fourth movement.
Takingplace Thursday-Sunday, May 31, June 1-3, at 8 p.m., in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, this concert is also part of the Symphony’s Music Unwound series and includes a display of Beethoven-inspired artwork by local artists. A preview talk by composer Ticheli begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25-$110; for more info or to purchase tickets, call (714) 755-5799 or visitwww.PacificSymphony.org.
For a complete line-up of events taking place for “Beethoven’s Ninth: Inside and Out,” read all about it HERE.
Yet it was clear from the first notes that the real star of this performance was the Pacific Symphony, with European-opera-house-seasoned Carl St.Clair providing on-the-dot pacing…the orchestra played beautifully, illuminating aspects of Puccini’s orchestrations that are so often obscured in the pit. And the Pacific Chorale’s and Southern California Children’s Chorus’ singing was at such a high level that you almost didn’t miss the color and clamor of a fully-staged Act II.
The stage comes alive with Puccini’s most beloved opera, “La Bohème,” starring Pacific Symphony, led by Music Director Carl St.Clair, and a cast of magnificent voices that include tenor David Lomeli as Rodolfo, soprano Maija Kovalevska as Mimi, baritone Hyung Yun as Marcello, soprano Georgia Jarman as Musetta, bass Denis Sedov as Colline, baritone Jeremy Kelly as Schaunard, bass Thomas Hammons as Benoit/Alcindoro and tenor Nicholas Preston as Parpignol.
Maija Kovalevska (Mimi)…. gave the role a slightly regal air with her velvety tone and elegant bearing… David Lomelí proved an ardent and ringing Rodolfo… Baritone Hyung Yun made a delightfully worldly Marcello… Soprano Georgia Jarman provided a suitably lively and flirtatious Musetta, her voice nimble and bright… and St.Clair led the orchestra judiciously, mining its soft colors and honoring his singers.
“It’s not about sets and costumes, it’s about the people,” says St.Clair. “From the sobbing Mimi to the flirtatious Musetta, the interaction of these characters paints a highly riveting and compelling story. The fact that our opera will be semi-staged allows for the focus to be on the relationships and for the orchestra to come out of the pit into the middle of the action. Whether you love the arias, duets, the ensembles, the waltz, the delight of children’s voices or the power of a large chorus—it has it all. It has everything it needs to be memorable.”—Carl St.Clair
The American Composers Festival opens with “Nowruz—Celebrating Spring,” exploring intersections between American and Persian music, on Thursday-Saturday, March 22-24, at 8 p.m. in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Led by St.Clair, the performance features Grammy Award-winning soprano Hila Plitmann, known for her astonishing voice. Her ability to perform challenging new works makes her the ideal choice to perform, along with the Pacific Chorale, the concert’s centerpiece, the world premiere of Richard Danielpour’s “Toward a Season of Peace.” Also on the program is Iran’s preeminent conductor, Farhad Mechkat, who takes turns with St.Clair on the podium, including conducting Kodaly’s “Dances of Galanta”; plus, the highly acclaimed Shams Ensemble performs Persian music. Read more about the Festival