Virginia Symphony Orchestra

Full Concert Schedule

Classics from Chopin and Brahms • 2/23-2/25

Friday, February 23, 2018 | 8PM | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News
Saturday, February 24, 2018 | 8PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk
Sunday, February 25, 2018 | 2:30PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach

The concert begins with Mendelssohn’s poetic work, Fingal’s Cave, before French pianist Prisca Benoit takes the stage with the VSO. Known for her intense, powerful sound, and for a refined pianistic touch with countless range of colors, Benoit performs Chopin’s moving Piano Concerto No. 2. Twenty-one years after its conception, Brahms wrote his first symphony after hearing Beethoven’s Ninth, both pieces in D minor.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Prisca Benoit, piano

Mendelssohn: Fingal’s Cave
Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 2
Brahms: Symphony No. 1

Newport News Classics Series Sponsor:

Norfolk Classics Series Sponsor:

Scheherazade, and a Philip Glass Fantasy • 3/9-3/11

Friday, March 9, 2018 | 8PM | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News
Saturday, March 10, 2018 | 8PM | L. Douglas Wilder Performing Arts Center, Norfolk
Sunday, March 11, 2018 | 2:30PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach

Join guest conductor Eric Jacobsen (conductor and co-founder of the out-of-the-box orchestral ensemble The Knights) for a contemporary masterwork by Philip Glass, featuring two of the VSO’s beloved principal players, Michael Laubach and Robert Cross.  This performance will thrill audiences in substance and style with its fantasy for two timpanists.  Scheherazade is the musical portrayal of a story from One Thousand and One Nights in which the Persian queen Scheherazade saves her own life through cunning story-telling.

Eric Jacobsen, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Michael Laubach, timpani
Robert Cross, timpani

Barber: Adagio for Strings
Philip Glass: Concerto Fantasy for Two Timpanists and Orchestra
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade

Norfolk Classics Series Sponsor:

Old Dominion University Symphony Orchestra Side-by-Side with the VSO • 3/20

March 20, 2018 | 7PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach

Enjoy a concert featuring the Old Dominion University Symphony Orchestra side-by-side with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra!

Rimsky-Korsakov: Russian Easter Overture
Paul Kim, conductor

Shchedrin: Carmen Suite
David Walker, conductor

Mussorgsky/Ravel: Pictures at an Exhibition
Benjamin Rous, conductor

Adults $10 | Children 12 and under are FREE
ODU students free with promo code

Mozart’s Haffner Symphony • 3/23

Friday, March 23, 2018 | 8PM | Crosswalk Community Church, Williamsburg

The final Williamsburg Classics program opens with György Ligeti’s Concert Romanesc, a modestly modern piece composed in four movements played without pause. Using elements from the Romanian folk tradition, Ligeti echoes childhood memories of Alpine horns heard in the Carpathian mountains. William Walton’s viola concerto, featuring Juilliard graduate and Chesapeake, VA native Andrew Gonzalez, is an emotionally gripping piece and is arguably the first great viola concerto of the 20th century. The performance concludes with Mozart’s Symphony No. 35. Also called the Haffner Symphony, the work has a spirited first movement that is, Mozart said, to be played with fire, followed by an unhurried, graceful second movement, a bright, atmospheric third, and ending in a fervid finale that Mozart advised be played “as fast as possible.”

  • Benjamin Rous, conductor
  • Virginia Symphony Orchestra
  • Andrew Gonzalez, viola

 

  • Mozart: Overture to Don Giovanni
  • Walton: Viola Concerto
  • Mozart: Symphony No. 35, Haffner

The Music of John Williams • 3/24

Saturday, March 24, 2018 | 8PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk

With a career spanning over six decades, John Williams has composed some of the most popular and recognizable film scores in the history of cinema, including Indiana Jones, Schindler’s List, Jurassic Park, and most notably Star Wars, which was selected by the American Film Institute as the greatest American film score of all time. Williams, who holds the record for most Oscar nominations (50) for a living person, transports audiences to new worlds through heart-pounding, awe-inspiring musical adventures.

Benjamin Rous, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra

Norfolk POPS! Series Sponsor:

Carmina Burana PLUS a Michael Daugherty World Premiere! • 4/6-4/8

Friday, April 6, 2018 | 8PM | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News
Saturday, April 7, 2018 | 8PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk
Sunday, April 8, 2018 | 2:30PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach

The VSO’s Classics season closes with one of the most recognizable works of all time – Carmina Burana.  Based on 24 of the poems found in the medieval collection Carmina Burana, this 20th-century choral masterpiece has been heard countless times in film, television and even at professional sporting events. Also on this dynamic program is a World Premiere of Grammy Award-winning composer Michael Daugherty’s Night Owl for Orchestra, commissioned by Susan and David Goode and inspired by the nocturnal steam locomotive photography of O. Winston Link.  Our partners for this production include the Virginia Museum of Transportation and the O. Winston Link Museum in Roanoke.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus
Robert Shoup, chorusmaster
Virginia Children’s Chorus
ODU Concert Choir
F. Ludwig Diehn Chorale

Michael Daugherty: Night Owl for Orchestra (World Premiere)
Orff: Carmina Burana

April 6 concert sponsor:

Norfolk Classics Series Sponsor:

Bernstein at 100 • 4/13 & 4/14

Friday, April 13, 2018| 8PM | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News
Saturday, April 14, 2018 | 8PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk

 

Virginia Symphony Orchestra
JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Virginia Chorale, Charles Woodward, Artistic Director
Jamie Bernstein, narrator
Todd Rosenlieb Dance
Soloist from Virginia Children’s Chorus
Robert McDuffie, violin
Jon Manasse, clarinet

If any single performance could encompass the breadth of Bernstein’s genius, this selection of works does. The audience is taken on a breathtaking ride through the joyful celebration of the Chichester Psalms, the darkly intricate beauty of the Serenade, featuring Grammy-nominated violinist Robert McDuffie, the transporting Symphonic Dances from West Side Story, and the knife-edge jazz of Prelude, Fugue and Riffs, written for Benny Goodman and performed here by award-winning clarinetist Jon Manasse, with Todd Rosenlieb Dance performing Rosenlieb’s original choreography. Bernstein’s daughter Jamie will host this spectacular celebration and speak of her father’s legacy.

Program:
Symphonic Dances from West Side Story
Chichester Psalms 
Serenade; Robert McDuffie, violin
Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs; Jon Manasse, clarinet; Todd Rosenlieb Dance

Leonard Bernstein at 100 is the worldwide celebration of the 100th birthday of composer, conductor, educator, musician, cultural ambassador and humanitarian Leonard Bernstein. Virginia Arts Festival is pleased to join hundreds of arts institutions and ensembles around the world in celebrating the contributions of this seminal artist.

The Festival will partner with two artists who share deep connections with Leonard Bernstein: Virginia Symphony Orchestra Music Director JoAnn Falletta, who studied under Bernstein, and Rob Fisher, the award-winning music director who has led Bernstein shows on Broadway and most recently kicked off the Leonard Bernstein at 100 worldwide celebrations with a Bernstein on Broadway tribute concert at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Co-presented with Virginia Symphony Orchestra


This production made possible through a generous gift from the Susan Goode Performance Fund.

This program funded by the City of Newport News and the Newport News Arts Commission.

Birmingham Royal Ballet: Romeo and Juliet with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra • 4/20 – 4/22

Friday, April 20, 2018 | 7:30 PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk
Saturday, April 21, 2018 | 7:30 PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk
Sunday, April 22, 2018 | 2:30 PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk

Forbidden passion, dangerous secrets and star-crossed fate collide in this exhilarating ballet classic. From the lovers’ first tender touch to the brash swordplay of the feuding nobles, Sir Kenneth MacMillan’s indelible choreography illuminates Shakespeare’s poignant tale as you have never seen it before. This spectacular production is a feast for the eyes and the ears: lavish costumes and elegant sets summon a Renaissance court and the full Virginia Symphony Orchestra performs the unforgettable Prokofiev score live. “Deeply moving…dancing which explored love in all its soaring wonder. A matchless theatre experience” (Birmingham Mail).

Sponsored by:

Virginia Arts Festival is proud to partner with American Evolution™, an initiative of the Commonwealth of Virginia commemorating the 400th anniversary of key historical events that occurred in Virginia in 1619 that continue to influence America today. Through a series of signature events and education programs of national and international significance, the American Evolution™ initiative is inspiring local, national, and international engagement in the themes of democracy, diversity, and opportunity and building awareness of Virginia’s role in the creation of the United States and Virginia’s leadership in education, tourism, and economic development over the past 400 years. The Virginia Arts Festival partnership with American Evolution™ began in 2017 and continues through 2019; the Festival’s 2018 season American Evolution ™ events include Alvin Ailey® American Dance Theater and Birmingham Royal Ballet.

Dance series sponsor:

Supported in part by the Friedrich Ludwig Diehn Fund of the Hampton Roads Community Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. 

The Music of Star Wars • 4/27

Friday, April 27, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 7:30 PM

Performing original music from the iconic motion picture series, the Virginia Symphony Orchestra takes audiences to a galaxy far, far away in a concert of Jedi proportions. Experience the entire saga through the films’ scores written by the legendary John Williams, including music from the recently released Episode VII: The Force Awakens. Don’t miss this epic performance of The Music of Star Wars!

Damon Gupton, conductor

Afternoon Encores • 5/1

Tuesday, May 1, 2018 | 2:00 PM | Chesapeake Conference Center, Chesapeake 

A special concert for the Senior Community of Hampton Roads

Robert Shoup, conductor

Enjoy a look back in time with familiar light classics and favorite popular tunes. Join the musicians of the Virginia Symphony on a musical tour through the years with romantic strings, rousing marches, and toe-tapping favorites. We’ll even throw in a sing-along for the young at heart!

Accommodations for wheelchairs, scooters and other assistive devices will be available. If you have a question about accessibility, please ask! We welcome your questions and look forward to welcoming you! Ushers will be on hand to greet you and your friends at this fun and memorable event! The concert will last approximately an hour and fifteen minutes.

TICKETS $25 PER PERSON AND $20 PER PERSON FOR GROUPS

Afternoon Encores • 5/2

Wednesday, May 2, 2018 | 2:00PM | Virginia Beach Convention Center 

A special concert for the Senior Community of Hampton Roads 

Enjoy a look back in time with familiar light classics and favorite popular tunes. Join the musicians of the Virginia Symphony on a musical tour through the years with romantic strings, rousing marches, and toe-tapping favorites. We’ll even throw in a sing-along for the young at heart!

Accommodations for wheelchairs, scooters and other assistive devices will be available. If you have a question about accessibility, please ask! We welcome your questions and look forward to welcoming you! Ushers will be on hand to greet you and your friends at this fun and memorable event! The concert will last approximately an hour and fifteen minutes.

TICKETS $25 PER PERSON AND $20 PER PERSON FOR GROUPS

Presenting Sponsor

Bernstein on Broadway • 5/12

May 12, 2018 | 8PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach


Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Rob Fisher, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus,
Robert Shoup, Chorusmaster
Broadway soloists to be announced

Music director, arranger and conductor Rob Fisher’s Broadway resume includes some of the biggest hits of the past three decades, including Chicago, Anything Goes, Hair, and An American in Paris. Fisher’s Bernstein roots run deep, and include the 2003 Broadway revival of Wonderful Town. In this starry evening at the Sandler Center, Fisher leads the VSO and leading Broadway singers in songs from Bernstein’s Broadway masterworks including West Side Story, On the Town, Candide, Wonderful Town, and more.

Leonard Bernstein at 100 is the worldwide celebration of the 100th birthday of composer, conductor, educator, musician, cultural ambassador and humanitarian Leonard Bernstein. Virginia Arts Festival is pleased to join hundreds of arts institutions and ensembles around the world in celebrating the contributions of this seminal artist.

The Festival will partner with two artists who share deep connections with Leonard Bernstein: Virginia Symphony Orchestra Music Director JoAnn Falletta, who studied under Bernstein, and Rob Fisher, the award-winning music director who has led Bernstein shows on Broadway and most recently kicked off the Leonard Bernstein at 100 worldwide celebrations with a Bernstein on Broadway tribute concert at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.


This program funded in part by the Sandler Center Foundation and the citizens of Virginia Beach through a grant from the Virginia Beach Arts and Humanities Commission.

Afternoon Encores • 5/29

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 | 2:00PM | Denbigh Community Center, Newport News

A special concert for the Senior Community of Hampton Roads 

Robert Shoup, conductor

Enjoy a look back in time with familiar light classics and favorite popular tunes. Join the musicians of the Virginia Symphony on a musical tour through the years with romantic strings, rousing marches, and toe-tapping favorites. We’ll even throw in a sing-along for the young at heart!

Accommodations for wheelchairs, scooters and other assistive devices will be available. If you have a question about accessibility, please ask! We welcome your questions and look forward to welcoming you! Ushers will be on hand to greet you and your friends at this fun and memorable event! The concert will last approximately an hour and fifteen minutes.

TICKETS $25 PER PERSON AND $20 PER PERSON FOR GROUPS

The Music of Journey• 5/17 & 5/18

Thursday, May 17, 2018 | 8PM | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk
Friday, May 18, 2018 | 8PM | Ferguson Center for the Arts

Forever Yours. Faithfully. For decades, Journey has been one of the world’s most revered rock bands of all time. With 25 gold and platinum albums, and 19 Top 40 singles, this year the world celebrates their influence with the band’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Join Benjamin Rous and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra for its own celebration of the band that never stopped believing. The Music of Journey boasts all the beloved rock ballads and hits like “Don’t Stop Believin’,” “Open Arms,” “Lights,” and “Faithfully.”

Virginia Symphony Orchestra

 

Newport News POPS! Series Sponsor:

Norfolk POPS! Series Sponsor:

Norfolk POPS! Concert Sponsor: Southern Bank, Grow

 

 

Lemony Snicket’s The Composer is Dead • 5/20

Sunday, May 20, 2018  | 3 PM | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts

The composer is dead! But where is the culprit lurking? In the strings? The lower brass? The woodwinds? Young music-loving sleuths can unravel the mystery in a concert of wit, wonder and whimsy! Experience how all the instruments of the symphony combine to bring the story to life!

Jeff Phelps, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra

Virginia Beach PB&J Series Sponsor:

Musical Genius “Squared” • 5/25

Friday, May 25, 2018 | 8PM | Regent University, Virginia Beach

This remarkable performance will feature signature works by two musical icons – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, arguably the greatest composer of all time, and “America’s foremost composer,” Aaron Copland. Mozart’s Haffner Symphony is one of his most famous, and like many of his works, it has a backstory nearly as interesting as the music itself. Copland’s Appalachian Spring was a commission by famed dancer Martha Graham and, throughout the years, has become an American anthem as important to our national heritage as apple pie.

Benjamin Rous, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra

Mozart: Overture to Don Giovanni
Mozart: Symphony No. 35, Haffner
Copland: Appalachian Spring
Copland: “Hoe-Down” from Rodeo

Virginia Beach Regent University Classics Series Sponsor:

Faith-The Music of George Michael • 9/14 & 9/15

Friday, September 14, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM
Saturday, September 15, 2018 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

With over 115 million records sold world-wide, George Michael secured his place in pop music history long before his untimely death on Christmas Day in 2016. A voice of his generation, his iconic style and high-energy songs spanned a 30-year career. Join the Virginia Symphony Orchestra for a special tribute to this superstar, performing his best hits like “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” “I’m Your Man,” “Faith,” and “Careless Whisper.”

Pictures at an Exhibition • 9/21 – 9/23

Friday, September 21, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM
Saturday, September 22, 2018 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM
Sunday, September 23, 2018 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Saunter into a new season with Pictures at an Exhibition. Mussorgsky’s most famous composition, written in just twenty days, is a suite of 10 pieces depicting his tour of a memorial exhibition for his late friend, the painter and architect Victor Hartmann. JoAnn Falletta and the VSO will perform Ravel’s orchestration of this picturesque masterpiece. Brahms’ Academic Festival Overture makes for a triumphant opening to this program before world-class violinist Sandy Cameron takes the stage to perform acclaimed film composer Danny Elfman’s Violin Concerto, recently premiered in June 2017 with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. 

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Sandy Cameron, violin

Brahms: Academic Festival Overture
Elfman: Violin Concerto
Mussorgsky/arr. Ravel: Pictures at an Exhibition

Boléro • 10/19 – 10/21

Friday, October 19, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, October 20, 2018 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Sunday, October 21, 2018 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Building on the momentum of our opening night, JoAnn Falletta and the VSO return for Ravel’s most famous work, Boléro. This melodic, whimsical work – originally composed as a ballet – is a perfect example of Ravel’s preoccupation with restyling and reinventing dance movements. The program begins with the Fourth Piano Concerto by Canadian composer André Mathieu, performed by guest artist Alain Lefèvre, who worked with conductor and composer Gilles Bellemare to reconstruct the composition that was lost for 70 years. At the height of the concert is Poulenc’s most celebrated work, Gloria.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Alain Lefèvre, piano
Anna Feucht, soprano
Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus
Robert Shoup, chorus master

Tailleferre: Overture
Mathieu: Piano Concerto No. 4
Poulenc: Gloria
Ravel: Boléro

The Sounds of Simon & Garfunkel • 11/3

Saturday, November 3, 2018 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Michael Krajewski, conductor
AJ Swearingen & Jonathan Beedle, vocals

Theirs was the harmony of a generation. Popular conductor Michael Krajewski returns to the VSO with two outstanding singers and band to lead this tribute, featuring Simon & Garfunkel’s greatest hits: “The Sounds of Silence,” “Scarborough Fair,” “Mrs. Robinson,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” “The Boxer,” and many more. This show is sure to leave you Feelin’ Groovy.

Winter Dreams • 11/30 & 12/2

Friday, November 30, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Sunday, December 2, 2018 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

“Winter is coming….” Usher in the season with the VSO in a program featuring an homage to winter featuring Glazunov’s picturesque Winter from The Seasons. Celebrated cellist Julian Schwarz returns with Tchaikovsky’s delightful Rococo Variations. The VSO then takes a trip north to Finland for Sibelius’ evocative Fifth Symphony. We close with a rare treat on the concert stage, the climactic Pas de Deux from Tchaikovsky’s beloved Nutcracker.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Julian Schwarz, cello

Glazunov: Winter from The Seasons, Op. 67
Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations for Cello and Orchestra
Sibelius: Symphony No. 5
Tchaikovsky: Pas de Deux from The Nutcracker

Handel’s Messiah • 12/14 & 12/15

Friday, December 14, 2018 | First Baptist Church, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, December 15, 2018 | Harrison Opera House, Norfolk | 8PM

Join the Virginia Symphony Orchestra and VSO Chorus for the time-honored Christmas tradition of George Frideric Handel’s revered oratorio, Messiah. Get in the spirit of the season with this distinguished performance of Handel’s sacred masterpiece that presents the austere and dramatic narrative of the Messiah. From Isaiah’s prophecies to the Hallelujah Chorus, you will be brought to your feet in the Messiah performance of the season.

Handel: Messiah

Holiday Pops! • 12/20 – 12/22

Thursday, December 20, 2018 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM
Friday, December 21, 2018 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM
Saturday, December 22, 2018 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 8PM

Robert Shoup, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus

Join us for the must-see holiday tradition of the season – Holiday Pops! There’s no better way to lift your spirits than with seasonal songs and traditional carols delivered in full sound and spectacle by the Virginia Symphony, the inspirational voices of Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus and special guests. Led by conductor Robert Shoup, Holiday Pops and will have all the magical elements you’ve come to expect Holiday Pops—high energy, familiar carols and lots of holiday warmth! And we’ll even throw in a surprise or two! We can’t wait to celebrate the season with all of you!

Broadway A to Z … ABBA to Lez Miz!™ • 1/18 & 1/19

Friday, January 18, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM
Saturday, January 19, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

We’re back with the best of Broadway! Your favorite Broadway hits spanning the decades, from Jerome Kern to Comden and Green. Featuring songs from: SHOWBOAT, Les Misèrables, Guys and Dolls, The King And I, Peter Pan, Rent, West Side Story, La Cage Aux Folles, Cabaret, and The Music Man. These are the songs that you and all Broadway fans around the world want to hear sung by the current stars of Broadway!

Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 • 1/25 – 1/27

Friday, January 25, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, January 26, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Sunday, January 27, 2019 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Composed during a health retreat in the Bohemian spa town of Teplice, in today’s Czech Republic, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 is one the composer considered to be among his best works. It gained instant popularity for its second movement, Allegretto, which was encored at the premiere in which Beethoven conducted. To open our program, the VSO is joined by soloist Sirena Huang for Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto, the largest orchestral work by the composer.

Thom Wilkins, conductor
Sirena Huang, violin

Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7

Grieg Piano Concerto • 3/9 & 3/10

Saturday, March 9, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Sunday, March 10, 2019 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Guest artist Jeffrey Biegel joins the VSO for one of the most-loved concertos of all time, Grieg’s Piano Concerto. This concerto is among Grieg’s earliest important works and the only concerto the composer completed. Written in just a month in the summer of 1944, Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 5 was intended to be “a hymn to free and happy Man, to his mighty powers, his pure and noble spirit.” This triumphant and electrifying composition has remained one of his most popular works.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Jeffrey Biegel, piano

Bantock: Kishmul’s Galley
Grieg: Piano Concerto
Prokofiev: Symphony No. 5

A Mozart Celebration • 3/21 – 3/24

Thursday, March 21, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, March 23, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Sunday, March 24, 2019 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Guest conductor Scott Yoo, Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Mexico City Philharmonic, takes the helm of this magnificent Mozart program.  Symphony No. 39 is the first of a set of three symphonies, the last set he composed. Its opening is “so majestic that it so surprised even the coldest, most insensitive listener.” The program opens with the Overture to The Magic Flute before Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante, a work that blends symphony with concerto in this small-ensemble masterpiece. With its rich harmonies and incandescent themes, the work has inspired arrangers and composers for centuries. This beautiful piece, the only surviving complete concerto for this combination of instruments, features principal musicians of the VSO.

Scott Yoo, conductor
Sherie Aguirre, oboe
Michael Byerly, clarinet
Laura Leisring, bassoon
Jacob Wilder, horn

Mozart: Overture to The Magic Flute
Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante in E-flat Major, K. 297b
Mozart: Symphony No. 39

Gershwin’s Rhapsody and More! • 3/28 & 3/29

Thursday, March 28, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM
Friday, March 29, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Kevin Cole, piano

Hailed “America’s Pianist,” Kevin Cole joins the VSO to pay homage to great American jazz giant George Gershwin! Chicago Tribune raves “When Cole sits down at the piano, you would swear Gershwin himself was at work… Cole stands as the best Gershwin pianist in America today.”  Don’t miss this grand finale to an incredible POPS season featuring “Rhapsody in Blue” and “They Can’t Take That Away From Me”.

A Night at the Movies • 4/5 – 4/7

Friday, April 5, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, April 6, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

Sunday, April 7, 2019 | Sandler Center for the Performing Arts, Virginia Beach | 2:30PM

Join the VSO for a Night at the Movies! From the composer of the score to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Tan Dun’s Pipa Concerto features a first for local audiences. The pipa is a traditional Chinese four-stringed instrument, and soloist Wu Man is one of the world’s leading performers, having worked with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble. John Williams’ hauntingly beautiful music from Steven Spielberg’s 1977 film Close Encounters of the Third Kind will be one of the many film scores featured.

Wu Man, pipa

Tan Dun: Pipa Concerto
Rózsa: Hitchcock’s Spellbound
John Williams: Close Encounters

Mahler Symphony No. 2 • 4/19 & 4/20

Friday, April 19, 2019 | Ferguson Center for the Arts, Newport News | 8PM

Saturday, April 20, 2019 | Chrysler Hall, Norfolk | 8PM

The 2018-19 Classics Season comes to a close with one of the greatest symphonies of all time. Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, among his most popular and successful works during his lifetime, demonstrates his vision of beauty in the afterlife and in resurrection. Characteristic of Mahler, the symphony is written for a huge orchestra and runs the gamut of emotions in the contemplation of life and death.

JoAnn Falletta, conductor
Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus
Robert Shoup, chorus master

Mahler: Symphony No. 2

Joanne Falletta, Music Director, Conductor - Virginia Symphony OrchestraJoAnn Falletta

Music Director

JoAnn Falletta is internationally celebrated as a vibrant ambassador for music, an inspiring artistic leader, and a champion of American symphonic music. An effervescent and exuberant figure on the podium, she has been praised by The Washington Post as having “Toscanini’s tight control over ensemble, Walter’s affectionate balancing of inner voices, Stokowski’s gutsy showmanship, and a controlled frenzy worthy of Bernstein.” Acclaimed by The New York Times as “one of the finest conductors of her generation”, she serves as the Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center and music advisor to the Hawaii Symphony.

Ms. Falletta is invited to guest conduct many of the world’s finest symphony orchestras. Recent guest conducting highlights include debuts in Belgrade, Gothenburg, Lima, Bogotá, Helsingborg, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, a European tour with the Stuttgart Orchestra, return engagements with the Warsaw, Detroit, Phoenix, and Krakow Symphony Orchestras and a 13 city US tour with the Irish Chamber Orchestra with James Galway.

She has guest conducted over a hundred orchestras in North America, and many of the most prominent orchestras in Europe, Asia, South America and Africa. Her North America guest conducting appearances have included the orchestras of Philadelphia, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Seattle, San Diego, Montreal, Toronto and the National Symphony and international appearances have included the London Symphony, Czech Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Korean Broadcast Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, China National Symphony, Shanghai Symphony, Liverpool Philharmonic, Manchester BBC Philharmonic, Scottish BBC orchestra, Orchestra National de Lyon and Mannheim Orchestra among others. Ms. Falletta’s summer activities have taken her to numerous music festivals including Aspen, Tanglewood, the Hollywood Bowl, Wolf Trap, Mann Center, Meadow Brook, OK Mozart Festival, Grand Teton, Eastern, Peninsula and Brevard Festival.

Falletta is the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards including the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award, the coveted Stokowski Competition, and the Toscanini, Ditson and Bruno Walter Awards for conducting, as well as the American Symphony Orchestra League’s prestigious John S. Edwards Award. She is an ardent champion of music of our time, introducing over 500 works by American composers, including more than 110 world premieres. Hailing her as a “leading force for the music of our time”, she has been honored with twelve ASCAP awards. Ms. Falletta served as a Member of the National Council on the Arts during both the George W Bush and Obama administrations.

Under Falletta’s direction, the VSO has risen to celebrated artistic heights. The VSO, which made critically acclaimed debuts at the Kennedy Center and New York’s Carnegie Hall under Falletta and entered into their first multinational recording agreement with Naxos, performs classics, pops and family concert series in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Newport News and Williamsburg.

In addition to her current posts with the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Virginia Symphony, Brevard Music Center and Hawaii Symphony, Ms. Falletta has held the positions of principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra, principal guest conductor of the Phoenix Symphony, music director of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra, associate conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and music director of the Denver Chamber Orchestra.

Ms. Falletta received her undergraduate degree from the Mannes College of Music in New York and her master’s and doctorate degrees from The Juilliard School.

JoAnn Falletta on NPR | The Innovative Mosaic Of American Symphonies

Michael Laubach, Principal

Dr. Ralph R. & Barbara Stephens, Principal Timpani Chair

Originally from Pittsburgh PA, Mike received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University studying with Timothy K. Adams, Jr., Principal Timpani with the Pittsburgh Symphony (retired) and Paul Evans, Percussionist with the River City Brass Band. Postgraduate studies included a drum set performance certificate from Los Angeles Music Academy and Cleveland State University where he studied with Tom Freer, Assistant Principal Timpani/Percussion with the Cleveland Orchestra. Mike has performed with the Baltimore Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Charlotte Symphony, Dayton Philharmonic, Erie Philharmonic, Fort Wayne Philharmonic, Toledo Symphony, and West Virginia Symphony Orchestras. Mike Currently lives in Virginia Beach with his wife Alice and son Valentine.

Robert W. Cross, Principal

Robert Cross joined the Virginia Symphony in 1981 and has been principal percussionist since 1987. He has also served the Symphony as Personnel Manager, Artistic Administrator, Orchestra Manager, Interim Executive Director and General Manager. In 1995, Mr. Cross became Executive Director of the Virginia Arts Festival. He has performed with the Boston Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Atlantic Symphony, American Repertory Theater, Leonard Bernstein Festival of American Music, Skaneateles Festival, Brevard and the Eastern Music Festival, and some of the world’s most prestigious ballet companies. A graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, Mr. Cross has recorded for Northeastern Records, New Albion, NPR Classics, CD Review, and Albany Records.

Benjamin Rous

Resident Conductor

Admired for his dynamism on the podium, Benjamin Rous was hired as Associate Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra in 2010 and quickly became a favorite among audiences throughout southeastern Virginia. Promoted to Resident Conductor in 2013, he took on an expanded role in the VSO’s calendar, where he performs annually on every series including Classics, Regional Classics, Pops, Young People’s Concerts, and state tours. In the summers, he pursues his love of education, serving as faculty conductor of Greenwood Music Camp in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts.

Recent guest appearances include debuts with the National Symphony, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Hartford Symphony, and the Santa Fe Symphony. Highlights of past seasons include performances with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa), Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, the Illinois Symphony, and on St. Louis’s Pulitzer Concerts with musicians of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. Rous was featured in the 2013 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview with the Jacksonville Symphony, and in the summer of 2014 he was called upon by the Grant Park Festival to fill in for a delayed conductor on less than 24 hours’ notice.

An accomplished instrumentalist, Rous has concertized extensively on violin, viola, and keyboard instruments. He has served as guest principal 2nd violin with Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with whom he performed under the batons of Claudio Abbado and Daniel Harding, including European tours and a teaching residency with El Sistema students in Caracas. He was a regular member of the Boston-area Arcturus Chamber Ensemble for a decade, and has led the Virginia Symphony Orchestra from the harpsichord in baroque repertoire.

Benjamin Rous studied music at Harvard with an emphasis on composition, graduating with highest honors. His works have been performed by diverse ensembles including the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, the Greenwood Orchestra, and the Fromm Players. During his college years he served as Music Director of Harvard Bach Society Orchestra and of Lowell House Opera, studied performance practice with Robert Levin, and performed on baroque violin with the Harvard Baroque Chamber Orchestra as section leader and soloist. He went on to earn the Doctor of Musical Arts in orchestral conducting with Kenneth Kiesler at the University of Michigan, where he also studied harpsichord and pursued his interest in dance. He received further guidance in festivals and masterclasses from David Zinman, Kurt Masur, Gustav Meier, Marin Alsop, and Lorin Maazel.

Benjamin Rous

Resident Conductor

Admired for his dynamism on the podium, Benjamin Rous was hired as Associate Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra in 2010 and quickly became a favorite among audiences throughout southeastern Virginia. Promoted to Resident Conductor in 2013, he took on an expanded role in the VSO’s calendar, where he performs annually on every series including Classics, Regional Classics, Pops, Young People’s Concerts, and state tours. In the summers, he pursues his love of education, serving as faculty conductor of Greenwood Music Camp in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts.

Recent guest appearances include debuts with the National Symphony, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Hartford Symphony, and the Santa Fe Symphony. Highlights of past seasons include performances with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa), Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, the Illinois Symphony, and on St. Louis’s Pulitzer Concerts with musicians of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. Rous was featured in the 2013 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview with the Jacksonville Symphony, and in the summer of 2014 he was called upon by the Grant Park Festival to fill in for a delayed conductor on less than 24 hours’ notice.

An accomplished instrumentalist, Rous has concertized extensively on violin, viola, and keyboard instruments. He has served as guest principal 2nd violin with Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with whom he performed under the batons of Claudio Abbado and Daniel Harding, including European tours and a teaching residency with El Sistema students in Caracas. He was a regular member of the Boston-area Arcturus Chamber Ensemble for a decade, and has led the Virginia Symphony Orchestra from the harpsichord in baroque repertoire.

Benjamin Rous studied music at Harvard with an emphasis on composition, graduating with highest honors. His works have been performed by diverse ensembles including the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, the Greenwood Orchestra, and the Fromm Players. During his college years he served as Music Director of Harvard Bach Society Orchestra and of Lowell House Opera, studied performance practice with Robert Levin, and performed on baroque violin with the Harvard Baroque Chamber Orchestra as section leader and soloist. He went on to earn the Doctor of Musical Arts in orchestral conducting with Kenneth Kiesler at the University of Michigan, where he also studied harpsichord and pursued his interest in dance. He received further guidance in festivals and masterclasses from David Zinman, Kurt Masur, Gustav Meier, Marin Alsop, and Lorin Maazel.

Joanne Falletta, Music Director, Conductor - Virginia Symphony OrchestraJoAnn Falletta

Music Director

JoAnn Falletta is internationally celebrated as a vibrant ambassador for music, an inspiring artistic leader, and a champion of American symphonic music. An effervescent and exuberant figure on the podium, she has been praised by The Washington Post as having “Toscanini’s tight control over ensemble, Walter’s affectionate balancing of inner voices, Stokowski’s gutsy showmanship, and a controlled frenzy worthy of Bernstein.” Acclaimed by The New York Times as “one of the finest conductors of her generation”, she serves as the Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center and music advisor to the Hawaii Symphony.

Ms. Falletta is invited to guest conduct many of the world’s finest symphony orchestras. Recent guest conducting highlights include debuts in Belgrade, Gothenburg, Lima, Bogotá, Helsingborg, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, a European tour with the Stuttgart Orchestra, return engagements with the Warsaw, Detroit, Phoenix, and Krakow Symphony Orchestras and a 13 city US tour with the Irish Chamber Orchestra with James Galway.

She has guest conducted over a hundred orchestras in North America, and many of the most prominent orchestras in Europe, Asia, South America and Africa. Her North America guest conducting appearances have included the orchestras of Philadelphia, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Seattle, San Diego, Montreal, Toronto and the National Symphony and international appearances have included the London Symphony, Czech Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Korean Broadcast Symphony, Seoul Philharmonic, China National Symphony, Shanghai Symphony, Liverpool Philharmonic, Manchester BBC Philharmonic, Scottish BBC orchestra, Orchestra National de Lyon and Mannheim Orchestra among others. Ms. Falletta’s summer activities have taken her to numerous music festivals including Aspen, Tanglewood, the Hollywood Bowl, Wolf Trap, Mann Center, Meadow Brook, OK Mozart Festival, Grand Teton, Eastern, Peninsula and Brevard Festival.

Falletta is the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards including the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award, the coveted Stokowski Competition, and the Toscanini, Ditson and Bruno Walter Awards for conducting, as well as the American Symphony Orchestra League’s prestigious John S. Edwards Award. She is an ardent champion of music of our time, introducing over 500 works by American composers, including more than 110 world premieres. Hailing her as a “leading force for the music of our time”, she has been honored with twelve ASCAP awards. Ms. Falletta served as a Member of the National Council on the Arts during both the George W Bush and Obama administrations.

Under Falletta’s direction, the VSO has risen to celebrated artistic heights. The VSO, which made critically acclaimed debuts at the Kennedy Center and New York’s Carnegie Hall under Falletta and entered into their first multinational recording agreement with Naxos, performs classics, pops and family concert series in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Newport News and Williamsburg.

In addition to her current posts with the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Virginia Symphony, Brevard Music Center and Hawaii Symphony, Ms. Falletta has held the positions of principal conductor of the Ulster Orchestra, principal guest conductor of the Phoenix Symphony, music director of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra, associate conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, and music director of the Denver Chamber Orchestra.

Ms. Falletta received her undergraduate degree from the Mannes College of Music in New York and her master’s and doctorate degrees from The Juilliard School.

JoAnn Falletta on NPR | The Innovative Mosaic Of American Symphonies

Bob Shoup, Chorusmaster, Staff Conductor - Virginia Symphony OrchestraRobert Shoup

Chorusmaster/Staff Conductor

This is Robert Shoup’s 20th season as Chorus Master and Staff Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra. His national and international conducting credits include the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra, ensembles from the Prague Radio Orchestra and Czech State Philharmonic, and numerous choral ensembles. He served as the Music Director of the all professional Virginia Chorale from 1997-2007.

Robert Shoup’s choruses have been described by critics as “totally enthralling” and “completely mesmerizing,” and he has spearheaded numerous collaborations that have included music, dance and visual arts. His ensembles have been featured on numerous recordings, including two discs with the VSO for the Naxos label (Hailstork and Stravinsky). He served as Assistant Music Director for the Virginia Symphony and Virginia Arts Festival’s highly acclaimed production of the Leonard Bernstein “Mass” and coordinated the collaborating choruses for 2012 performances and recording of Mahler’s Eighth symphony known as the “Symphony of a Thousand.”

His achievements include the creation and coordination of “American Voices”, a two-week-long festival of American choral music with the Virginia Chorale and the VSO. The project earned one of seven major National Endowment for the Arts “American Masterpieces: Choral Music” grants. Shoup also prepared a nationally recruited choir of over 1,800 singers for the 400th Anniversary celebration of Jamestown.

Mr. Shoup is also a singer whom the Pittsburgh Post Gazette called Shoup “an especially fine tenor.” His vocal performances have included the role of John Adams in the world premiere performance of Adolphus Hailstork’s Crispus Attucks, and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Fort Collins (CO) Symphony. Mr. Shoup is the founding Artistic Director of CREATOrS, Inc., for which he is composing the score for a major theatrical project related to a true story in sub-Saharan Africa.

Shoup holds a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education (voice) from Duquesne University, and a Master’s degree in Conducting in the studio of Grammy-winning conductor Robert Page at Carnegie Mellon University.

 

Benjamin Rous

Resident Conductor

Admired for his dynamism on the podium, Benjamin Rous was hired as Associate Conductor of the Virginia Symphony Orchestra in 2010 and quickly became a favorite among audiences throughout southeastern Virginia. Promoted to Resident Conductor in 2013, he took on an expanded role in the VSO’s calendar, where he performs annually on every series including Classics, Regional Classics, Pops, Young People’s Concerts, and state tours. In the summers, he pursues his love of education, serving as faculty conductor of Greenwood Music Camp in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts.

Recent guest appearances include debuts with the National Symphony, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Hartford Symphony, and the Santa Fe Symphony. Highlights of past seasons include performances with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (Ottawa), Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, the Illinois Symphony, and on St. Louis’s Pulitzer Concerts with musicians of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. Rous was featured in the 2013 Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview with the Jacksonville Symphony, and in the summer of 2014 he was called upon by the Grant Park Festival to fill in for a delayed conductor on less than 24 hours’ notice.

An accomplished instrumentalist, Rous has concertized extensively on violin, viola, and keyboard instruments. He has served as guest principal 2nd violin with Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with whom he performed under the batons of Claudio Abbado and Daniel Harding, including European tours and a teaching residency with El Sistema students in Caracas. He was a regular member of the Boston-area Arcturus Chamber Ensemble for a decade, and has led the Virginia Symphony Orchestra from the harpsichord in baroque repertoire.

Benjamin Rous studied music at Harvard with an emphasis on composition, graduating with highest honors. His works have been performed by diverse ensembles including the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra, the Greenwood Orchestra, and the Fromm Players. During his college years he served as Music Director of Harvard Bach Society Orchestra and of Lowell House Opera, studied performance practice with Robert Levin, and performed on baroque violin with the Harvard Baroque Chamber Orchestra as section leader and soloist. He went on to earn the Doctor of Musical Arts in orchestral conducting with Kenneth Kiesler at the University of Michigan, where he also studied harpsichord and pursued his interest in dance. He received further guidance in festivals and masterclasses from David Zinman, Kurt Masur, Gustav Meier, Marin Alsop, and Lorin Maazel.