ASA ANNOUNCES SPRING 2021 EVENTS

Date: Apr 12, 2021

Allentown Symphony Association announces Spring 2021 events connecting audiences with new digital performances recorded live from the stage at Miller Symphony Hall

Music Director/Conductor Diane Wittry returns to the podium leading the Allentown Symphony Orchestra with three new concerts
Composer in Residence Chris Rogerson curates the first New Music Chamber concert showcasing premiere works from regional composers
Jazz OnStage at Miller Symphony Hall continues with a full slate of livestream performances
Young musicians from El Sistema Lehigh Valley present a digital Spring Concert – recorded from Miller Symphony Hall, and
Live music goes al fresco with the Symphony’s new Serenade Series bringing the joy of music to neighborhoods throughout the region beginning this June

Allentown, PA, April 1, 2021 – Continuing its successful digital performance series, the Allentown Symphony Association announced Spring 2021 events, highlighted by the return of Music Director/Conductor Diane Wittry to the podium leading the Allentown Symphony Orchestra in three performances streamed from Miller Symphony Hall. Other streaming events announced include the first New Music Chamber Concert, curated by Composer in Residence Chris Rogerson, featuring works by regional composers, and the continuation of the popular Jazz OnStage series featuring performances livestreamed from the stage at Miller Symphony Hall.  Young musicians of El Sistema Lehigh Valley will present a Virtual Spring Recital and musicians of the Symphony go al fresco with Symphony Serenades – a new series bringing the joy of live music directly into the community.

“We began streaming chamber ensemble concerts last fall as a way to stay connected to our audience and lift spirits – the way that only music can – while many were feeling isolated,” said Executive Director Al Jacobsen. “Now, with hope very much in the air, we are thrilled that we can safely bring an orchestra to the stage at Miller Symphony Hall conducted by Music Director Diane Wittry. The safety of our musicians, staff, and audience remains our top priority – which is why we have decided to continue our performances virtually rather than open the Hall for public events. While these events remain on the digital stage there is a lot of creative, exciting new offerings this spring.”

“It will be a very active spring season for us,” Jacobsen continued. “Jazz streams on tap, the start of the new music series curated by Chris Rogerson and El Sistema Lehigh Valley – which has continued its successful program of online teaching since March 2020 – will present a concert of ‘Hope and Celebration’ in June. And we are excited about our Serenade Series which will take the musicians of the orchestra, in small ensembles, to the community for outdoor events.  We’re thrilled with the variety of events planned for the spring as we continue to reach our audience with innovative programs.”

ALLENTOWN SYMPHONY DIGITAL SERIES
Music Director Diane Wittry returns to the podium leading the Allentown Symphony Orchestra with all new performances of masterworks this spring.  Plus, Composer in Residence Chris Rogerson curates a innovative New Music program featuring up and coming composers from throughout the region. Mozart. Schubert. Beethoven. Rogerson and more.  The greatest music of all time – and of our time – with the Allentown Symphony.

ALLENTOWN SYMPHONY NEW MUSIC SERIES: CHAMBER SERIES
NATURE & POETRY
Digital stream premiere Saturday, April 24th at 7:30pm. Then available on demand. Featuring Musicians of the Allentown Symphony.

The Allentown Symphony Orchestra begins its innovative three-concert, multi-year New Music Chamber Series with Nature & Poetry.  Curated by the ASO’s first Composer in Residence, Chris Rogerson, the performance features premieres by area composers and selections from Rogerson and renowned contemporary composer Valerie Coleman.

Composers have long been inspired by nature in their works, from Haydn’s The Seasons to Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony and others. The works on this concert have a connection to nature, whether abstractly, like the Beethoven, or with a connection to a text about nature.

Nature and Poetry Composers and Selections:
Pierre Bohemond (Adult selection): “The Shores of Phoenicia”
Lawrence Flynn (Faculty, Dieruff High School): “Emerson's River”
Paul Salerni (Faculty, Lehigh University): “Golden Retrievals”
Ava Bloomfield (High School Senior selection, Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts): “A Bird Song”
Liam Mulligan (College selection, Moravian College): “tusaidie”
Morgan Moss (College selection, Temple Unniversity): “The Brook”
Chris Rogerson (ASO Composer in Residence): “A Fish Will Rise”
Valerie Coleman (Contemporary composer spotlight): Selections from “Portraits of Langston”

 

MAGNIFICENT MOZART – SYMPHONY NO. 40
Diane Wittry, Conductor
Omri Barak, ASO Principal Trumpet
Allentown Symphony Orchestra Digital Stream Premiere Saturday, May 1 at 7:30pm. Then available on demand.

Louise Farrenc  Overture No. 2 in E-flat major, Op. 24         
J.B.G. Neruda  Corno da Caccia Concerto in E-flat major
  Omri Barak, trumpet
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550                                                            


SUBLIME SCHUBERT – THE FIFTH SYMPHONY
Diane Wittry, Conductor
Peter Paulsen, ASO Principal Bass
Allentown Symphony Orchestra Digital Stream Premiere Saturday, May 29 at 7:30pm. Then available on demand.

George Frideric Handel  “Entrance of the Queen of Sheba” from Solomon
Chris Rogerson  In Passing 
Giovanni Bottesini  Concerto No. 2 for Double Bass in B minor
  Peter Paulsen, bass
Franz Schubert  Symphony No. 5 in B-flat major, D. 485


BEETHOVEN’S “EROICA”
Diane Wittry, Conductor
Allentown Symphony Orchestra Digital Stream Premiere Saturday, June 12 at 7:30pm. Then available on deman.

Beethoven  Overture & Finale from The Creatures of Prometheus, Op.43                                                              
Beethoven  Symphony No. 3 in E-flat major, Op. 55 “Eroica”      

 

SYMPHONY SERENADES
In June, the Allentown Symphony is bringing live music to the neighborhoods of music lovers throughout the community with a new Serenade Series. These private concerts will be performed by the Lehigh Valley’s finest musicians, al fresco, in backyards, driveways, cul-de-sacs and neighborhood get-together spots.  Don’t worry about dressing up, parking or getting downtown…the Allentown Symphony is coming to you!

Symphony Serenades are exclusive 30-minute concerts each performed by two or three musicians of the Allentown Symphony. Patrons have the flexibility of coordinating their guest lists with the ASO providing an unforgettable afternoon or evening concert of outdoor music for a fee of only $400. This amount is considered a charitable contribution. With five remarkable ensembles available, Serenade concerts will delight groups with eclectic performances and the magic that only live performance brings. The Allentown Symphony is grateful to individual underwriters for helping to fund the Serenade Series in order to lower the cost to the community.

Reservations are limited and CDC guidelines will be strictly adhered to. For more information on booking home or community Symphony Serenade performances email Donna Fritchey at dfritchey@allentownsymphony.org. Companies interested in sponsoring this program should contact Lucy Bloise at lbloise@allentownsymphony.org.

 

JAZZ ONSTAGE
The “Best Listening Room in the Lehigh Valley” continues to be at Miller Symphony Hall this spring.  The popular jazz cabaret series will showcase the phenomenal sounds of The Frank Dibussolo Group, Horizons Quartet and Steve Sandberg. All performances will be presented live-streamed in HD direct to jazz-lovers’ at-home nightspots.

THE FRANK DIBUSSOLO GROUP "Get Organized!"
Live stream video Friday, April 23 at 7:30pm. Then available on demand.
Frank DiBussolo – guitar
Gary Staples - organ
Lorenzo Branca - drums

Guitarist Frank DiBussolo returns with a new ensemble and sound. The organ trio that was prevalent in the 60's and 70's is back!
This classic grouping defined the jazz world with its swinging, hard driving groove and sensuous ballads.
Reminiscent of the sound Wes Montgomery, Pat Martino and George Benson, Frank and his colleagues bring " Get Organized " to the Miller Symphony Hall Jazz Series.

HORIZONS QUARTET
Live stream video Friday, May 14 at 7:30pm. Then available on demand.
Dan Wilkins – saxophones
James Collins – piano
Gene Perla – bass
Byron Landham - drums

Horizons Quartet is the latest collaboration between saxophonist Dan Wilkins and pianist James Collins.  The band features the revered bassist, Gene Perla and Philadelphia’s Byron Landham on drums.  Their self-titled album releases in May 2021, on PM Records.  

STEVE SANDBERG QUARTET
Premiere video stream Friday, June 19 at 7:30pm. Then available on demand.
Steve Sandberg – piano
Zach Brock – violin
Mauricio Zottarelli – drums
Michael O’Brien – bass

Three-time Emmy-nominated composer/pianist Steve Sandberg brings his Quartet to the stage of Miller Symphony Hall for a debut performance.   The concert mixes performances from the solo piano repertoire (Chopin, Ravel, Bartok, Liszt), with soaring improvisions on originals that are based on these pieces and draw from Latin, African, Balkan, and East Indian traditions. A not-to-be missed performance!

 

EL SISTEMA LEHIGH VALLEY – SPRING CONCERT
SPRING CONCERT 2021
“Hope and Celebration”

El Sistema Lehigh Valley
Thursday, June 10th at 6:30 pm

El Sistema Lehigh Valley will present its Spring 2021 Concert on June 10th at 6:30 PM featuring recordings of ESLV students playing together at Miller Symphony Hall with a theme of “Hope and Celebration”.  Free to watch at http://www.facebook.com/ESLVprogram.

 

Ticketing and General Information

Tickets for the Allentown Symphony Digital Series are FREE to Allentown Symphony subscribers and $15 per device for the public.  Jazz OnStage shows are available to stream for $15 per device.  For more information on the Allentown Symphony Serenade Series, email Donna Fritchey at dfritchey@allentownsymphony.org.

To order tickets for streaming events follow these easy steps:

Visit MillerSymphonyHall.org
Select Buy Tickets from the drop-down menu, choose your event by series or by date then click on the “Buy Tickets” button
Complete your order form (virtual event ticket links can only be delivered by email – this option will be preselected) and click “Submit”
Once the order is complete, ticket buyers will receive an email with a unique event link (highlighted in blue) to view the concert.

For questions about how to order contact our Box Office staff at info@allentownsymphony.org.

The most up-to-date information, news, event listings and ordering details for Miller Symphony Hall may be found by visiting http://www.MillerSymphonyHall.org, by asking a question at info@allentownsymphony.org or by calling 610.432.6715.  For the latest in digital content visit Miller Symphony Hall@Home (mshathome.org).

 

ABOUT THE ALLENTOWN SYMPHONY ASSOCIATION /ALLENTOWN SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

Operating the Allentown Symphony Orchestra, El Sistema Lehigh Valley and owner/operator of Miller Symphony Hall, the Allentown Symphony Association is one of the region’s premier performing arts organizations.

Each year, the Allentown Symphony performs more than 20 classical, pops, educational, and family concerts.  In 2014 and again in 2017, the orchestra received the national American Prize for “orchestral excellence.”  With passion and finesse, led by Music Director & Conductor Diane Wittry, the Allentown Symphony plays time-honored masterworks, newly commissioned world premieres, and intriguing repertoire, including works by prominent new composers.

Exciting world-class artists that have performed with the Allentown Symphony include Midori, Emanuel Ax, Angela Meade, and Peter Serkin, as well as jazz trumpeter Byron Stripling, saxophonist Branford Marsalis, and Broadway vocalist Christiane Noll.  The orchestra’s classically trained musicians include players from the major urban centers of New York, Baltimore-D.C., and Philadelphia.

Music Director Diane Wittry, now in her 26th Season, is known for her innovative programming style, using video, dancers, subtitles, and other visuals that give her concerts a sense of occasion.  She has been a stellar advocate for music education outreach for all ages and skill levels.  Lehigh Valley native Ronald Demkee is the Allentown Symphony Associate/Pops Conductor.  The two previous Allentown Symphony Music Directors were Donald Voorhees, the distinguished conductor of the studio orchestra for NBC’s Emmy-award-winning “The Bell Telephone Hour,” and William Smith, Assistant Conductor to the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy.

The Allentown Symphony has received music commissioning grants from the National Endowment of the Arts, and from the League of American Orchestras in support of its El Sistema-inspired program for at-risk youth.  The Allentown Symphony Association also hosts the biennial National Schadt String Competition which attracts top young performers from all over the country.

As it has for the last 70 years, the Allentown Symphony continues its pursuit of excellence with passion, keeping alive the legacy of masterworks while bringing the works of modern masters to the concert stage for the entire community.

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