Celebrating Masterpieces: Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra’s Upcoming Season Kicks off Sept. 25

20 Sep 2017
The Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra’s 2017-2018 season, “Brilliance: A Celebration of Masters and Masterpieces,” begins on Sept. 25. The Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra’s 2017-2018 season, “Brilliance: A Celebration of Masters and Masterpieces,” begins on Sept. 25. John Earl

Tuscaloosa is no stranger to those who master their craft, and the Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra’s 2017-2018 season, “Brilliance: A Celebration of Masters and Masterpieces,” is bringing its own message to the town of champions.

The season kicks off Monday, Sept. 25 with “The Majesty of Beethoven.” TSO Executive Director Jenny Mann says the concert will present Beethoven in a fresh perspective.

“It’s really going to be an interesting experience to hear ‘Symphony No. 4’ and ‘Symphony No. 7’ next to each other, because they represent two different periods of Beethoven’s style,” Mann said. “No. 4 was influenced by Mozart, while No. 7 is fully in Beethoven’s own voice, which is known for being very emotional and dark. No. 4 more closely follows classical music form and rules and No. 7 is motivated by emotion, but both are written by the same mind. No. 7 is also not played as often as some of his other symphonies, so it’s a unique opportunity to hear it live.”

Cheers ‘n Chat will begin prior to the performance at 6 p.m. For those who want to see behind the curtain and become more knowledgeable about the orchestra’s inner workings, the TSO will hold its Music and Wine Dinner with Evangeline’s Restaurant on Monday, Oct. 30.

“The wine pairing dinner is a great opportunity for people to see musicians up close in an informal and intimate environment,” she said. “We’re only seating 70 people, and the musicians will stay and eat with everyone. People will have the chance to ask any question they’ve ever wanted to ask, and there’s no dumb question.”

The TSO will perform pieces at the dinner that aren’t as standard and aren’t performed on the orchestra’s stage, Mann said. TSO’s “Shout for Joy – Winds and Voice with Chamber Orchestra” will bring some extra culture right before Thanksgiving on Monday, Nov. 20.

“It’s the only concert of its kind all year long. It’s another opportunity to hear a different kind of music with a smaller orchestra and a different collection of instruments,” Mann said. “It’s perfect for people who feel intimidated by classical music or think they don’t like it. It’s a good chance to hear something different and inspiring, but also relates to the holiday season with its general seating and being less formal.”

The TSO will round out 2017 with its Annual TSO Christmas Celebration in collaboration with the Prentice Concert Chorale and the Alabama Choir School on Monday, Dec. 18. Just a couple of days before Valentine’s Day, the TSO will present “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” on Monday, Feb. 12.

“Two things inspired ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.’ Hudson Poole is such an incredible supporter to the TSO. They’re donating a piece of jewelry to give away at that concert. We want to thank Gene Poole for doing that,” she said. “We’ve also wanted to collaborate with our longtime friend Paul Houghtaling and the UA Opera Theatre. We wanted to celebrate orchestral music and opera, so the TSO is having special arrangements written to be performed alongside the song. People will be able to see their favorites performed in a new way.”

Monday, March 5 will mark TSO’s Annual Discovery Day – Dancing Musical Characters at 6 p.m. This year, the TSO is collaborating with the Tuscaloosa Community Dancers to bring Benjamin Britten’s “Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra” to awaken the piece.

“It’s a familiar piece. People know that piece whether they know it or not,” she said. “They’ll see it in a different way because they don’t usually see it in dance.”

Wrapping up the season, the Run for the Roses Dinner and Silent Auction will be held on Thursday, May 3 at 6:30 p.m. The TSO closes its 2017-2018 season with “Musical Brilliance – The Phenomenal Stewart Goodyear” on Monday, May 8.

“[Goodyear] is a renowned piano soloist and we are incredibly lucky that he agreed to play in Tuscaloosa,” Mann said. “West Alabama doesn’t have the opportunity to hear a soloist with this kind of international renown, so it’s going to be exciting for the audience and for the orchestra to play with him.”

All concerts by the TSO are held in the Moody Music Building at 7 p.m. unless otherwise written. For more information about TSO’s 2017 season and to buy tickets, visit tsoonline.org. 

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Tori Linville

A graduate of The University of Alabama, Tori is a professional in the publishing industry and brings strong writing and editing skills while contributing creative ideas, contemporary concepts, and editorial experience to her varied projects.

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Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.



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