We christen this season’s magnificent Davidson Classical Series with a matched pair of masterworks. Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, in its virtuoso orchestration by Maurice Ravel, opens the program; then we’ll hear Carmina Burana, Carl Orff’s gripping rendition of poetry by the savvy, mischievous goliards – “monks gone wild,” if you will. Experience the mystique, dark humor, and rapturous bliss of this panoramic window on medieval life and lore in an unforgettable performance featuring some of Alabama’s finest young classical singers and the Huntsville Community Chorus.
Mussorgsky | Pictures at an Exhibition
Orff | Carmina Burana
The “gentle giants” of the early twentieth century, these two French composers created sound-worlds never before imagined, leaving an indelible impression on the consciousness of the age. Ravel’s saffron-scented Rapsodie espagnole is one of his first mature orchestral works, and the cosmopolitan, jazzy Piano Concerto in G ranks among the most dazzling creations of his later years. Respighi’s watercolor Fountains of Rome, and Debussy’s La mer, inspired by views of the wild English Channel coast, round out tonight’s decadent feast for the ears.
Ravel | Rapsodie espagnole
Ravel | Piano Concerto in G
Respighi | Fountains of Rome
Debussy | La mer
Dinner & Concert
Franz Schubert loved spending time in the taverns of his native Vienna, a few of which today bear plaques distinguishing them as places where the composer ate, drank, and worked late into the night. This evening, we invite you and your guests to enjoy dinner and drinks as Gregory and the musicians of the HSO bring Schubert’s approachable but ambitious Octet to a “secret room” hidden in plain sight within Straight to Ale at Campus 805, Huntsville’s nationally renowned craft brewery.
New Year’s Eve with the Symphony
Be sure to include the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra in your New Year’s Eve plans, because we’re tuning in and toasting to great orchestral music from screens big and small – blockbuster epics like Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, and Pirates of the Caribbean as well as nostalgic nods to classic television. Music is what makes the magic happen, and we have plenty of thrills and surprises in store for fans of all ages.
Known as the “Apotheosis of the Dance,” Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 presents a particularly vivacious side of the composer; even the introspective second movement bursts with rythmic vitality. The centerpiece of a triad of gems offered tonight, the Beethoven is complemented by Brahms’ Variations on a Theme by Haydn, which the composer transcribed from its original setting for two pianos in order to teach himself the art of orchestration; and by Alban Berg’s sublimely crafted Violin Concerto, the occasion for Finnish virtuoso Elina Vähälä’s return to the Rocket City.
Brahms | Variations on a Theme by Haydn
Berg | Violin Concerto
Beethoven | Symphony No. 7
Prokofiev | Peter and the Wolf
Prokofiev | Violin Concerto No. 1
Tchaikovsk | Symphony No. 4
The nightly jazz concerts at New Orleans’ Preservation Hall are the stuff of legend. These musical ambassadors of the bona fide Big Easy have toured since 1963, continuously bringing both new musicians and fans into their fold; they have performed and recorded with Carlos Santana, the Grateful Dead, Harry Connick, Jr., Dr. John, and Pete Seeger, and have appeared at the Hollywood Bowl, Lincoln Center, the White House, and Coachella in recent years. A recipient of the 2006 National Medal of Arts, Preservation Hall Jazz Band is dedicated to preserving and perfecting a genuine American art form, and knows how to have a large time doing it!
Mozart’s “Haffner” Serenade
Barber | Second Essay for Orchestra
Barber | Toccata Festiva
Saint-Saëns | Symphony No. 3
With its innocence and sincerity, Steven Spielberg’s 1982 sci-fi fantasy set hearts aglow. Thanks in large part to the sensitive orchestral score by John Williams, the story of Elliott and his unusual friend captured the imaginations of millions and became a cultural phenomenon. Grab some popcorn, settle in, and share the magic with the whole family as we screen the original film — and perform the soundtrack live with full orchestra – in this one-of-a-kind film concert spectacular.
To walk through the doors of U. G. White Mercantile in downtown Huntsville is to step into the living history of Alabama; nearly every fixture in the store has a story to tell. This afternoon’s Casual Classics performance celebrates our state’s rich storytelling heritage: Alabama’s most treasured wordsmiths and yarn-spinners will entertain and enlighten you, while the musicians of the orchestra perform underscores drawn from the chamber works of composers such as Bernstein, Barber, Dvořák, and William Grant Still.
Strauss | Don Juan
Schumann | Cello Concerto
Strauss | Don Quixote