Pacific Symphony League Receives California Senate Resolution of Recognition  

State Senator Dave Min (SD-37) presented the California Senate Resolution of Recognition to the Pacific Symphony League at a luncheon on Monday, Sept. 27. Photo by Stan Sholik.  

The Pacific Symphony League has been the orchestra’s premier support group since 1990. Volunteers serve as ambassadors and provide operational and financial support for our education, community and engagement programs. As of October 2021, they have a total of 84 members. 

2020 was a milestone year for the League. At a luncheon last month, State Senator Dave Min presented the California Senate Resolution of Recognition in honor of their 30th anniversary. In addition to the Resolution of Recognition, they also received other recognition documents from United States Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative Katie Porter. Pacific Symphony staff members President and CEO John Forstye and Assistant Conductor Dr. Jacob Sustaita were onsite as well.  

One of the best things about being a part of this unique group is being around like-minded music lovers who enjoy the Symphony just as much as you do. If you’ve ever been to one of our concerts or events before, you’ve most likely interacted with one of their members. They’re an incredibly important part of our community.  

From helping behind the scenes to enjoying member-only events, there’s a way for everyone to get involved. If you’re interested in joining, upcoming events include a Happy Hour at the Avenue of the Arts Hotel before the Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto concert on Nov. 11 and a luncheon at Center Club Orange County on Dec. 13. Volunteer perks include concert vouchers and a member pin among others.  

To learn more about the League and/or join, please click here. You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Thank you for everything you all do to help keep the arts going. 

Voice of OC Features Symphony on the Go!

Symphony on the Go! concert at Diamond Jamboree Shopping Center in July 2021. Photo by Eric Simonson.  

Since June 2021, we’ve had the honor of bringing light chamber music to cities across Orange County. From the South Coast Chinese Cultural Center in June to San Juan Capistrano this month, it has been an incredibly fun road trip.  

Recently, Symphony on the Go! was featured in the Voice of OC. To see the full article written by Richard Chang, please click here. Thank you for the mention!  

What is a Symphony on the Go! concert? A Symphony on the Go! concert is a free outdoor event that typically features a string quartet or a woodwind or brass quintet on a pop-up mobile stage. Audience members are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets. Our mobile stage is a special gift from philanthropists and Pacific Symphony-lovers Jerry and Terri Kohl. All concerts are weather permitting.  

If this is something you’d still like experience, there are a few more concerts left before the season comes to an end. You can learn more about upcoming events here. Craving more concerts? You can learn more about our 2021-22 season here.  

Thank you for joining us this season, everyone!  

Composer Frank Ticheli’s “All the World’s a Stage” Receives World Premiere Oct. 14 – 16  

Composer Frank Ticheli at the piano.

Specially commissioned for Carl St.Clair’s 30th anniversary career milestone as Pacific Symphony’s Music Director, Frank Ticheli’s All the World’s a Stage will receive its world premiere next week.  

A gift for orchestra and audience, this unique piece will encourage everyone in the concert hall to participate. From making air sounds to playing whirlies and even singing, the tasks will add an interactive element to the evening. Something like this hasn’t been done at the concert hall before.  

For those of you who may be wary, don’t worry, Carl St.Clair will teach you everything you need to know beforehand. You’ll only be joining the Symphony at the beginning and end of the piece. No prior music training required. Carl St.Clair will cue you when it’s time for you to join the orchestra.  

Formerly Pacific Symphony’s Composer-in-Residence from 1991–1998, Ticheli has a decades-long friendship with our community and also teaches composition at USC’s Thornton School of Music. Named after one of Shakespeare’s famous lines from the play As You Like It, Ticheli’s 10-minute piece is sure to be a memorable experience for all of us.  

We don’t want to give too much away, but if you would like to get a sneak peek and hear from the composer, don’t forget to catch this conversation with our Assistant Conductor Jacob Sustaita and Frank Ticheli below. We can’t wait to see everyone in action soon.  

A virtual conversation with Assistant Conductor Jacob Sustaita and Composer Frank Ticheli.

To learn more about our Beethoven’s “Eroica” concerts, please click here.  

Welcome! Live Music is Back!

From the Desk of John Forsyte

Please join me for the opening weekend of what will surely be an emotional return to classical music performances by Pacific Symphony at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. Music Director and Conductor Carl St.Clair has a wonderful program planned including the world premiere of a fantastic work by Juilliard-based composer, Wayne Oquin. The work is described by the composer as the “ongoing aspect of urban city life: the construction of modern skyscrapers.” It features virtuosic and colorful writing for the entire orchestra and for solo clarinet.

One of the great legends in classical music is pianist Emanuel Ax who has had a distinguished solo and recording career and has been a close collaborator with Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman and so many other luminaries. Mr. Ax will perform the sparkling Mozart Piano Concerto No. 17. To close the concert, we will hear the sweeping drama of Tchaikovsky’s most beloved Symphony No. 5.

Concerts take place Thursday-Saturday at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday at 3:00 p.m. (Sunday is Tchaikovsky only). To learn more, please click here: www.pacificsymphony.org.

Video message from Music Director Carl St.Clair

Season Ahead: Sunday Matinees

Image Description: Photos of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (top left), Gustav Mahler (top right), Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (bottom left) and Ludwig van Beethoven (bottom right).  

Weekends are a big part of our schedule here at Pacific Symphony. We know how important they are to you too. If you’re looking for new Sunday activities, we have 4 Sunday Matinee concerts this season for your consideration:  

  • Oct. 3: Tchaikovsky’s Fifth  
  • Jan. 9: Mahler’s Symphony No. 4  
  • May 22: Mozart’s Requiem  
  • Jun. 12: Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto  

Join us for an intimate and lively behind-the-scenes exploration of the classics! Concerts are 90 minutes long and include insightful comments from Maestro St.Clair. Doors open at 2 p.m. and the concert starts at 3. There will be no intermission for each show.  

To learn more about the series and get tickets, please click here.  

Arts & Culture Events To Enjoy In Orange County This Fall

Image Description: Pacific Symphony led by Maestro Carl St.Clair on the performance platform at the Renee and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa, CA.

Orange County’s arts and culture scene provides a lot to look forward to this fall and Voice of OC has a great run down of everything going on. There truly is something for everyone, and we hope you get a chance experience the best our community has to offer. You can take a look at the piece written by Richard Chang, Kristina Garcia, Timothy Mangan, Eric Marchcese, Anne Marie Panoringan and Kaitlin Wright here

Mentioned in the article is our classical season opener, “Emanuel Ax Plays Mozart,” from Sept. 30 – Oct. 2. The show starts at 8 p.m. each night and tickets are still available. To learn more about the event, please click here. 

What events are you looking forward to going to this season? Let us know in the comments below. Thank you for the shout out, Voice of OC!  

Celebrate Opening Night, Sept. 30

Can you feel the excitement and anticipation building? The fall concert season is about to begin. Pacific Symphony has planned an exceptional opening concert you won’t want to miss. Music Director Carl St.Clair leads the orchestra in a program featuring the internationally renowned pianist Emanuel Ax, who is known for his “thoughtful, lyrical, lustrous pianism” (The Washington Post). He will perform Mozart’s charming Piano Concerto No. 17. Maestro St.Clair concludes the concert with Tchaikovsky’s moving Fifth Symphony. For more information or to buy tickets, click here.

For an enhanced experience, reserve an Opening Night Celebration Table or Ticket for “A Notable Gathering.” Be part of this one-of-a-kind Orange County special event, featuring a pre-concert cocktail reception and sumptuous dinner on the plaza, an inspiring concert, intermission reception and festive after-party. All proceeds for this fundraising event benefit go towards Pacific Symphony’s artistic, community and education programs. All guests are asked to provide proof of vaccination or a negative Covid test result within 72 hours the event. For more information, please contact Pacific Symphony Special Events (714) 876-2364 or Events@PacificSymphony.org

Get ready for opening night by tuning in to Symphony Mixer on Weds., Sept. 22 at 5 p.m. to experience Emanual Ax in conversation with Jacob Sustaita, Pacific Symphony’s assistant conductor. Watch the Symphony’s Facebook page for more details.

September 11: A Remembrance

The final SummerFest concert falls on Sept. 11, this year the 20th anniversary of 9/11. In addition to presenting the traditional Tchaikovsky Spectacular program, the concert will open with musical homage to the bravery of so many Americans.

The Star-Spangled Banner, John Williams’ Liberty Fanfare, The Road Home by Stephen Paulus, Amazing Grace played on bagpipes and God Bless America will be followed by a moment of silence to remember the fallen. Pacific Symphony’s President John Forsyte provided the following note about the concert:

The first half of the Sept. 11 concert commemorates the 20th anniversary of 9/11 with works by American composers and a presentation by Brian Fennessy, Fire Chief of the Orange County Fire Authority. We honor and will never forget the 3,000 lives lost that terrible day. We honor the courage of those who put themselves in harm’s way to save people they never knew. We come together in gratitude for the strength that has fortified us across these 20 years and attempt to honor the legacy of those who were lost. 

We applaud the bravery of the region’s first responders, particularly as they grapple with the losses due to our fire season here and so many other challenges created by the pandemic.

We also salute the bravery of our women and men in uniform who, in the last few weeks, undertook the largest airlift in history under extremely dangerous conditions. We also offer condolences to the families of the service women and men and Afghan citizens who were lost during this valiant effort.

With the music of the Sept. 11 concert, we hope that you find joy, solace and a reminder of the power of gathering as a community to honor freedom, community and creativity.

John Forsyte

President, Pacific Symphony

For more information or to buy tickets for the Sept. 11 concert yet, go here.

Happy Classical Music Month!

“Classical music is a celebration of artistic excellence. Great art endures through the ages, and in the United States we have embraced that great music and incorporated it into the American experience.” –former President Bill Clinton

In Aug. 1994, former President Bill Clinton declared September Classical Music Month in the U.S. Since then, fans around the country have been trying to find different ways to celebrate it each year.  

Whether you’ve just started listening to classical music or are a seasoned pro, know that it’s never too late to get started or to deepen your knowledge of the art form.  

Here are some fun suggestions:  

  • Pick a composer you’ve never listened to and put together an introductory playlist. You can even keep track of what you think about it on a blog or social media. 
  • If you’re a musician, create a video series of some of your favorite compositions and classical artists.  
  • Don’t forget to thank your favorite music educators!  
  • Look for volunteer opportunities to support your local arts organizations. 
  • Attend a Pacific Symphony concert! 😉  
  • If you’re looking for a way to end the summer season, our Tchaikovsky Spectacular will take place on Saturday, Sept. 11th at the Pacific Amphitheatre.  

How would you celebrate Classical Music Month? How has music impacted your life? Let us know in the comments below! We’d love to hear your story. Thank you for your continued support during this unprecedented time.  

ICYMI: Pacific Symphony and Other Major OC Arts Venues Announce New Vaccination & Masking Policies

In March 2020, after the worldwide outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, the entire performing arts industry experienced an unprecedented shutdown. After a year and a half of adjusting to conditions, Pacific Symphony and several major Orange County arts venues are getting ready to welcome patrons back to concert halls once more.  

While we’re excited to see you in-person again, the success in reopening live performing arts venues will rely on all of us to work together. In case you missed the initial announcement last week, here are some highlights:  

  • These updates are in effect for all indoor performances.  
  • Masks must be worn at all times.  
  • Fully vaccinated 14 days after the first or second dose of receiving a covid-19 vaccine. 
  • Anyone without proof of being fully vaccinated must provide proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours prior to entering the theatre. 

As we continue to monitor industry and government guidelines, we will keep you updated as much as we can. Places where you’ll find reminders include (but are not limited to) our main website and social media and email communication channels.  

We know it has been a very challenging time but we want to take this moment to thank you for your cooperation and understanding as we move forward with upcoming 2021-22 concert season.   

Please save this link for future reference: https://bit.ly/PSVaccinationMaskUpdate.