Virginia Symphony Orchestra

POPS! Concert Series

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:

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

 

 

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.”

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.

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!

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”.

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.