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Springfield Symphony Orchestra Announces 2024-25 Season’s Concerts, “A Tapestry of Music”

By June 24, 2024June 27th, 2024No Comments
2024-2205 Season Header

Season to feature nine concerts, two led by Artistic Advisor Mei-Ann Chen; Music to feature Latin American and Spanish composers; romantic themes for February, and the ever-popular Holiday Pops

Springfield—The Springfield Symphony Orchestra (SSO) has announced its 2024-25 Season, which will open on October 19, 2024 and will feature nine concerts with the theme, “A Tapestry of Music.” 

The “Tapestry of Music” theme highlights the universal language of music that transcends cultural, linguistic and geographical barriers and connects people across the globe, invoking the world themes of the season’s nine performances.

Season subscriptions and individual concert tickets will be available soon on the SSO website, Tickets will start at $25.

According to Paul Lambert, President and CEO of the SSO, “We are thrilled and proud to announce what will be the most diverse offerings of symphonic music and Pops performances in the coming 2024-25 season. Our conductors and soloists will transport our audiences around the globe with performances featuring North and South American composers to African American popular music, Asian Folk-themed symphonies, German and French-inspired compositions and a Leonard Bernstein composition from West Side Story.”

The season will begin on Saturday, October 19, 2024 with “New England Reverie” featuring newly-named Artistic Advisor for the SSO, Mei-Ann Chen, at the helm in her first concert under her new title, and pianist Ann Marie McDermott. The concert will feature works by two of the “Boston Six” and America’s first great composers, George Whitefield Chadwick and Amy Beach. Beach composed the first-ever piano concerto by an American woman, to be performed by McDermott that evening. The performance will also be highlighted by Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5.

The second concert of the season will be held on Saturday, November 16 with “Echos of the Americas,” an exciting program that explores Latin American and Spanish composers with Guillermo Figueroa as guest conductor and violin soloist, and pianist Miguel del Aguila. The performance will feature a violin concerto by Puerto Rican composer Ernesto Cordero, whose unique style fuses classical approaches with Caribbean sounds and rhythms. Also featured will be tango, conga and much more.

The ever-popular Holiday Pops will be held as a matinée on Saturday, December 14, “Heralding the Holidays,” featuring the return of William Waldrop as guest conductor, vocalist Shayna Steele, an American singer, songwriter and Broadway stage actress; the Springfield Symphony Chorus; and Cantor Elise Barber. 

On Saturday, January 18, 2025, the SSO will present “A New Musical World,” the SSO’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, with Antonín Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 at the heart of the performance (subtitled “From the New World”) which will also be accompanied by visuals on the big screen. The concert will feature both historic and living composers who explore and express their visions of America and use of African-American popular musical styles and melodies. The concert will be led by Jeri Lynne Johnson as guest conductor and will feature Melissa White as a violin soloist.

Byron Stripling, a popular guest conductor for the SSO, will return to conduct “Gershwin, Berlin &  Friends” on Saturday, February 1, which will also feature vocalist Sydney McSweeney, pianist Bobby Floyd and percussionist Jim Rupp. The concert is described as “a magical journey through some of the greatest songs ever written,” all American classics by musical icons. 

A second February concert will feature a matinée of romantic works on Saturday,
February 15, titled “The Harmony of Love,” conducted by Mei-Ann Chen. The concert will feature Asian folk-themed repertoire from Taiwan, South Korea and Vietnam, highlighted by Butterfly Lover’s Concerto (Chen Gang / He Zhanhao), along with Leonard Bernstein’s world-renowned Symphonic Dances from West Side Story

On Saturday, March 15 will be “Eternal Echoes,” the third matinée of the season, featuring Cailin Marcel Manson as guest conductor, soprano soloist Jamie-Rose Guarrine and the Springfield Symphony Chorus, under the direction of Nikki Stoia. The concert will create a fusion of choral and orchestral elements with John Rutter’s Requiem. Ennio Morricone’s Gabriel’s Oboe and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Symphony #4 will also be performed.

The SSO will present “Something New” on Saturday, April 19, another matinée with world-renowned guest conductor JoAnn Falletta, saxophonist Tim McAllister, and violinist Nikki Chooi. Modest Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition will be highlighted by visual projections on the big screen over the orchestra, displaying artist Viktor Hartmann’s drawings, watercolors and designs that inspired Mussorgsky. Kenneth Fuchs’ Saxophone Concerto will be premiered by virtuoso McAllister, and another virtuoso, Chooi, will perform Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto. The concert will take concertgoers through a wonderful tapestry of American, German and Russian music “with a French accent.”

The SSO’s final concert of the season will be “Variation and Virtuosity” on Saturday, May 3, featuring Marcelo Lehninger as guest conductor and pianist Natasha Paremski. The program will feature Ronaldo Miranda’s Temporal Variations (Beethoven Revisited); Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Pagagini, Op. 43; and Beethoven’s Symphony #7 in A major, Op. 92, known as one of his most important works.

In addition to the scheduled season’s concerts, the SSO will again plan to host its third annual Juneteenth celebration in 2025, and the hosting of educational performances for public school students. 

The Springfield Symphony Orchestra is the largest Massachusetts symphony outside of Boston. It consists of over 65 musicians from the NE region of the United States and Canada, and holds many performances in a given season – as either the full orchestra or in ensemble formats. 

Mei-Ann Chen appears by arrangement with Opus 3 Artists, LLC
Ann Marie McDermott appears by arrangement with Opus 3 Artists, LLC
Jeri Lynne Johnson appears by arrangement with Arabella Arts LLC
Melissa White appears by arrangement with Dinin Arts Management & Consulting, LLC
JoAnn Falletta appears by arrangement with Opus 3 Artists, LLC
Timothy McAllister appears by arrangement with Jonathan Wentworth Associates, Ltd
Marcelo Lehninger appears by arrangement with Opus 3 Artists, LLC
Natasha Paremski appears by arrangement with Arts Management Group