Yo-Yo Ma headlines 2003-04 RSO

Yo-Yo Ma headlines 2003-04 RSO


Building on a tradition the Rockford Symphony established last season, the RSO will also perform two outdoor concerts this summer at the Bengt Sjostrom Theatre on the campus of Rock Valley College. The ComEd Independence Day Spectacular, Saturday, July 5, will feature a variety of patriotic anthems and marches—even fireworks! Then, on Aug. 2, the RSO welcomes jazz, gospel and swing vocalist Dee Daniels to the stage for a salute to the great ladies of swing. Tickets for these concerts are $20, $19 for students and senior citizens, and are on sale through the Starlight Theatre Box Office.

Music Director Steven Larsen and the musicians of the Rockford Symphony invite you to “Feel the Excitement” in the 2003-04 season with a variety of classics, pops, summer and special concerts in a full spectrum of exciting symphonic music performances. This season, the Rockford Symphony is bringing some of the greatest guest artists in the classical music world to the Coronado Theatre. World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, pianist André Watts, and tenor Daniel Rodriguez top the list of unforgettable performers in store for audiences of the RSO next year.

“The Symphony has made huge strides in its artistic product in the last five years,” said Executive Director Scott Provancher. “We are now able to bring our audiences the finest artists in the world—our talented orchestra is able to share the stage with legendary guest performers. It’s an exciting time for the RSO, and for our concert-goers.”

After last season’s triumphant opera, Madama Butterfly, the Rockford Symphony is thrilled to collaborate once again with Opera Illinois for its Season Opening Opera, Donizetti’s stunning Lucia di Lammermoor. This tale of star-crossed lovers, set in 17th- century Scotland, is based on Sir Walter Scott’s novel, The Bride of Lammermoor, and presents some of opera’s most memorable duets and ensembles. The sumptuous costumes, soaring arias, beautiful sets and glorious orchestral music are all back this year, coming together for one unforgettable evening! This performance is sponsored by National City.

“The response to the opera was so positive last year,” said Music Director Steven Larsen, “we really wanted to work with Opera Illinois on another performance. Lucia is very similar to Madama Butterfly, in that it has a wonderfully tragic story, amazing orchestration and beautiful production elements. I think Rockford is really going to fall in love with Lucia.”

In the Conflux Design Classics Series, the RSO is privileged to host legendary pianist André Watts performing Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 1. Other highlights of the Classics Series include Haydn’s stunning “Creation,” an expansive work for orchestra and chorus featuring the Mendelssohn Chorale; and Chinese cellist Hai Ye Ni performing Ernest Bloch’s Schelomo. The RSO will also welcome 17-year-old Stefan Jackiw, already recognized as one of the most significant artists of his generation, performing Mendelssohn’s inspired Violin Concerto No. 2. Add to these exciting guest performers an incredible collection of orchestral music, including works by Brahms, Beethoven, Haydn, Rachmaninoff and Bach, alongside some of the most important composers of our generation—Jennifer Higdon, Steven Mackey, and Michael Daugherty.

Pops audiences will be treated to the exceptional concerts as well. Local native and hometown favorite Randy Sabien will perform his signature jazz violin with the RSO in the Fall Pops concert. Then the Chicago Children’s Choir will bring us the sounds of the season, performing for the RSO’s Holiday Pops. Finally, the RSO’s Spring Pops features the NYPD officer and superstar tenor Daniel Rodriguez—whose talents were made famous by his moving performances in the aftermath of Sept. 11.

In April 2004, virtuoso cellist Yo-Yo Ma will come to the Coronado with a special concert, presented by the RSO, called “The Silk Road Project.” The program explores the culture, history and music that developed along the ancient trade route linking Europe with the Far East. Traditional Eastern instruments and musicians from all over the world will join Yo-Yo Ma on stage for this incredible concert.

“We are thrilled to have this rare opportunity to host Yo-Yo Ma in Rockford,” said Executive Director Scott Provancher. “He is one of the pre-eminent musicians of our time, and this performance is something very personal for him. It should be an amazing event.”

The RSO’s Family Series will also continue next year with two KinderKonzerts at the Coronado Theatre. These 50-minute performances are geared toward young people and families. More information on specific programming at dates will be available soon.

Rockford Symphony Orchestra subscription packages range in price from $18-$314. (Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Project tickets are available only to subscribers at this time.) To request a season brochure, call the RSO office at 965-0049 or visit the RSO Web site at www.rockfordsymphony.com. Single tickets to RSO performances will go on sale Aug. 13, 2003. Single ticket prices are $36, $28 and $15, $6 for students. Single tickets for the opera Lucia di Lammermoor are $48, $38, $28 and $20 for students.

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