General News

MICHAEL FEINSTEIN & THE POPS CLOSE THE SEASON WITH JEREMY JORDAN & SHELÉA FRAZIER IN A NIGHT AT THE MOVIES!

Pasadena, CA – Michael Feinstein and the Pasadena POPS close their popular outdoor summer concert series at the Los Angeles County Arboretum on September 12 with the quintessential Feinstein experience – a special tribute to the Academy Awards. A Night at the Movies! brings the glitz and glamour of the Academy Awards to the Arboretum with Oscar-nominated music from Hollywood classics Singing in the Rain, Meet Me in St. Louis, The Wizard of Oz, Lullaby of Broadway and many more. “This will be an evening that salutes great film composers, classical film scores and a lot of songs that you will know and love,” says Feinstein, who has curated an evening of what he considers “the best and most representative of Hollywood.”

The songs of Hollywood’s Golden Age will be sung by two fresh talents, Sheléa Frazier and Jeremy Jordan.  A versatile rising star, Frazier has performed with such legends as Stevie Wonder and Brian McKnight. She will be joined on stage by the fabulous Jeremy Jordan. A Tony and Grammy award nominee, this singular talent is best known for his starring role in the Broadway production of Newsies and his series regular role on the NBC hit series Smash.

Feinstein has put together a sensational season closer jam-packed with surprises. The evening promises not to disappoint, with tap dancers and a chorus complementing a few select pieces, and a parade of authentic Hollywood costumes topping off the spectacle. Don’t miss Michael Feinstein and the Pasadena POPS in their final concert of the 2015 season as they remember Oscar winners and losers in this evening of Hollywood favorites that will leave everyone saying, “You should have been there.”

It’s the last chance for the best outdoor dinner party in town with spacious circular table seating with fine linens, or lawn seating for those who want to bring a blanket – each option carries on the tradition of picnic-dining with family and friends. Among many venue amenities, audiences can enjoy pre-ordered gourmet dining packages for on-site pickup just steps from your table from Julienne, Marston’s, and Claud & Co. The food court also host mouth-watering food trucks plus specialty ice creams by Choctál and two full beverage centers serving fine wines, beer, coffee and soft drinks. Audiences get the ultimate outdoor concert experience: large LED video screens to see the artists and orchestra up close, superior sound quality and the high-quality production value that is a signature of the Pasadena POPS. Patrons may also visit the Pasadena Humane Society’s Mobile Adoption Unit, which will be on-site prior to the concert with deserving animals in need of a forever home as part of the Pups for POPS program.

All concerts are held at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Grounds open for picnicking and dining at 5:30 p.m. and performances begin at 7:30 p.m. All concertgoers enjoy free parking at the adjacent Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with complimentary non-stop shuttle service to the Arboretum’s main entrance.

The Arboretum is located at 301 North Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA. Single tickets and season subscriptions are now on sale and are available by calling the box office at (626)-793-7172, online at PasadenaSymphony-Pops.org or at the Arboretum on the day of the concerts.

 

IF YOU GO:

  • What: Michael Feinstein and The Pasadena POPS present A Night at the Movies!
  • When: Saturday, September 12; Gates open at 5:30pm, Concert starts at 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: The LA County Arboretum | 301 N Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007
  • Cost: Tickets start at $25.00
  • Dining: Gates open at 5:30pm. Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drink or visit one of the many onsite gourmet food vendors.
  • Parking: Subscribers have the opportunity to purchase onsite Arboretum parking. Single ticket holders may park for free at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with free non-stop shuttles to the main gate.

MICHAEL FEINSTEIN SINGS THE SINATRA PROJECT FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY WITH THE PASADENA POPS

Pasadena, CA – Pasadena Pops Conductor Michael Feinstein puts down the conducting baton and picks up the microphone for one night only to sing a full concert devoted to the legacy of Frank Sinatra. On Saturday, August 1 spend an evening with the Pasadena POPS at the Los Angeles County Arboretum to celebrate Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday with Feinstein as soloist for his Grammy-nominated Sinatra Project. An old-fashioned crooner with luxuriant vocals that meld the traditions of old and new, Feinstein has been dubbed the “Ambassador of the Great American Songbook” for his preserving, presenting, and interpreting of that seminal body of work.  In typical Feinstein fashion, The Sinatra Project will share both the music of Sinatra and personal anecdotes recalling the life and times of Ol’ Blue Eyes.

The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer has curated an evening celebrating the brilliance of “The Voice” as only Feinstein can. Hear timeless hits such as “Luck Be A Lady,” “Cheek to Cheek,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “The Lady Is A Tramp,” “For Once In My Life” and more. “I have wanted to pay tribute to Frank Sinatra for many years because of his kindness to me when I had the opportunity to meet and know him,” says Feinstein. “The big trick or the hardest part of doing something like the Sinatra Project is to create a show that pays tribute but does not copy him. I tried to choose songs and material that are well known and lesser known to give a sense of the man and his personality. And the songs that I perform – that are familiar ones – I try to do slightly different from the way Frank Sinatra sang them because nobody did them better than he did. Our show also contains a beautiful tribute medley to Sinatra that thematically puts together a number of songs so that we have a little story.”

An incomparable concert experience awaits you as you celebrate under the stars with Michael Feinstein and The Sinatra Project, playing one night only with the Pasadena POPS at the Los Angeles County Arboretum on August 1.

All concerts are family friendly and are held at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Grounds open for picnicking and dining at 5:30 p.m. and performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Among many venue amenities, audiences can enjoy pre-ordered gourmet dining packages for on-site pickup just steps from your table from Julienne, Marston’s, and Claud & Co.; the food court  will host mouth-watering food trucks plus specialty ice creams by Choctal. The experience is now even more convenient with two full beverage centers serving fine wines, beer, coffee and soft drinks plus exclusive hotel packages for POPS patrons at Pasadena’s landmark Hotel Constance. Patrons may also visit the Pasadena Humane Society’s Mobile Adoption Unit, which will be on-site prior to each concert with deserving animals in need of a forever home as part of the Pups for POPS program.

Subscribers may pre-purchase parking on-site at the Arboretum, and all concertgoers enjoy free parking at the adjacent Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with complimentary non-stop shuttle service to the Arboretum’s main entrance. Audiences get the ultimate outdoor concert experience: large LED video screens to see the artists and orchestra up close, superior sound quality and the high-quality production value that is a signature of the Pasadena POPS.

Don’t miss the best outdoor dinner party in town with spacious circular table seating with fine linens, or lawn seating for those who want to bring a blanket – each option carries on the tradition of picnic-dining with your family and friends with Michael Feinstein and Pasadena’s premier POPS orchestra! The Arboretum is located at 301 North Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA. Single tickets and season subscriptions are now on sale and are available by calling the box office at (626)-793-7172, online at PasadenaSymphony-Pops.org or at the Arboretum on the day of the concerts.

IF YOU GO:

  • What: The Sinatra Project with Michael Feinstein and the Pasadena POPS
  • When: Saturday, August 1 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: The LA County Arboretum | 301 N Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007
  • Cost: Tickets start at $25.00
  • Dining: Gates open at 5:30pm. Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drink or visit one of the many onsite gourmet food vendors.
  • Parking: Subscribers have the opportunity to purchase onsite Arboretum parking. Single ticket holders may park for free at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with free non-stop shuttles to the main gate.

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Pasadena’s Most Celebrated Annual Free Concert Returns This Summer with an Inaugural Partnership with Make Music Pasadena

Pasadena, CA – As the summer season grows closer each day, it’s time to join the Pasadena Symphony and Pops for its annual free Music Under The Stars concert on Saturday, June 6, on the steps of City Hall. Experience what crowds over 4,000 enjoyed last year, as for the first time the Pasadena Symphony and Pops joins the line-up of Make Music Pasadena, West Coast’s largest free music festival. Presented with sponsorship support from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, the 2015 Music Under the Stars concert will be a tribute to the Ladies of the Great American Songbook celebrating iconic music from Hollywood, Broadway and beyond!

“This year promises to be bigger than ever,” stated Lora Unger, Chief Executive Officer of the Pasadena Symphony Association. “With our partnership with Make Music Pasadena, we’re excited to join a day celebrating the musical tradition that builds such strong community within Pasadena.”
The family fun begins at 5:30 p.m. with pre-concert activities, family-style picnicking, and gourmet food trucks. Families can discover the wonder of creating their own music with the instruments of the orchestra at the instrument “petting zoo,” where kids of all ages can toot flutes, blow trumpets, bow strings, and bang on percussion instruments. Families can bring their own picnic along to enjoy at the site, or purchase a variety of offerings from a collection of gourmet food trucks.
Under the baton of multiple Tony Award-nominated Larry Blank, Resident Pops Conductor, the performance guest artists include Broadway sensations with the Tony award winning star Debbie Gravitte plus Meredith Patterson and Christina Saffran. Resident Conductor Larry Blank will emcee and lead the ensemble in musical selections from Rodgers and Hart, Marvin Hamlisch, Jule Styne, Steven Sondheim, George Gershwin and so much more. The JPL chorus, composed of volunteer JPL employees and under the direction of Donald Brinegar, completes the line-up for this captivating evening of Music Under the Stars. Grounds open at 5:30 p.m., the concert will take place between 7:30 – 9:00 p.m.
Gravitte, one of Broadway’s biggest personalities, a star on the Broadway stage to the concert stage and beyond won the prestigious Tony award for her performance in Jerome Robbin’s “Broadway” and has played in roles including “They’re Playing Our Song,” “Perfectly Frank,” “Chicago,” and “Les Miserables.”
Patterson made her Broadway premiere in the Tony Award Winning Revival of “42nd St” and graced the stage in “The Boyfriend” under the direction of legendary Julie Andrews. Celebrated for her solo jazz show “Sweet Old Fashioned Girl,” Patterson voice has been heralded as “exquisite, a beguiling delight.”
Saffran’s career is extensive, having starred as Kathy Seldon in Singin’ in the Rain, (cast recording), Maggie in A Chorus Line, Shoo Shoo in Sophisticated Ladies, Rosa Bud and Edwin Drood in Drood, and Zaneeta in The Music Man.
“As a major supporter of the arts, Bank of America is proud to once again help bring events like Music Under The Stars to Pasadena,” said Jefferson Landers, Bank of America Merrill Lynch resident director, based in Pasadena. “By supporting cultural legacies like the Pasadena Symphony and POPS, we provide our communities with access to art and culture that not only offer social and education benefits, but also acts as an economic driver for the region.”
Bank of America’s arts program supports nonprofit arts and culture presenters at the local level and with leading world-class arts entities. Other programs include the Museums on Us® program, which offers Bank of America customers free access to 150 of America’s finest cultural institutions, and the Art in our Communities® program through which the company shares its corporate collection with museums throughout the world.
Admission to this event is free, and guests are encouraged to bring a picnic, blanket, and low-back chairs. Rental chairs will also be available at the event. For more information, visit www.PasadenaSymphony-Pops.org or call 626.793.7172.

IF YOU GO:
– What: Bank of America’s Music Under the Stars with the Pasadena Symphony and POPS as part of Make Music Pasadena
– When: Saturday, June 6. Pre-concert festivities at 5:30 p.m.; concert at 7:30 p.m.
– Where: Pasadena City Hall Centennial Square
– Cost: Free, Chair Rentals $3
– Parking: Plaza Las Fuentes Structure (Union Ave & Los Robles); School House Parking Facility (Green St. & Raymond Ave); Pasadena Center/Sheraton Parking Structure (Marengo & Cordova); Paseo Colorado Subterranean Garage; Paseo Colorado Marengo Avenue Parking Structure; Paseo Colorado Los Robles Parking Structure; Arroyo Seco Park Parking (Raymond Ave or Arroyo Blvd), and Marriott Courtyard Hotel Parking (enter on Raymond).

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PASADENA SYMPHONY FINISHES SEASON WITH SPECTACULAR GRIEG PIANO CONCERTO

Pasadena CA – The Pasadena Symphony concludes its exhilarating season with a bang on Saturday May 2, 2105. Hear award-winning Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Martinez performing the Greig’s hugely popular piano concerto and taste the rapture and romance of Romeo & Juliet as summoned up by one of the greatest Russian masters, Prokofiev on at Ambassador Auditorium with matinee and evening performances at both 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

The romantic Piano Concerto written by Edvard Grieg, “the Chopin of the North,” explores the expressive drama, joy, and adulation of Norwegian folk dances and festivities, written for his beloved wife Clara. Romantic programming weaves together the evening, as Sergei Prokofiev’s dramatic tragic interpretation of Romeo and Juliet creates a virtual retelling of Shakespeare’s most famous work with excerpts that bring the passionate zest of the story to life. Christopher Rouse’s Rapture, unlocks the powerful bombastic strength of the entire orchestra with as Rouse describes, “a progression to an ever more blinding ecstasy!”

“We are inspired as we look back at this landmark season under the full artistic direction of Music Director David Lockington and Principal Guest Conductor Nicholas McGegan,” says Lora Unger, CEO of the Pasadena Symphony Association adding “we’ve made a pronounced impact on our audience and they’re enthusiastically responding to it… it sets the stage for even greater things to come next year as we expand our Classics Series to six concert weekends.”

Lauded by The New York Times as “compelling, elegant, and incisive,” Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Martinez is quickly establishing a reputation and earning praise as a versatile artist who combines “panache and poetry” (Dallas Morning News) with a “sense of grace and clarity” (The Star Ledger).

Performances are accompanied by a popular pre-concert discussion that gives the audience insights into the music and musicians one-hour before curtain. Audiences are invited to luxuriate in the lively Sierra Auto Symphony Lounge, yet another addition to the delightful and elegant concert experience the Pasadena Symphony offers. Located in the beautiful outdoor plaza at the Ambassador Auditorium, audiences can enjoy a deliciously prepared lunch and dinner menu specially created for the evening by Claud and Co, fine wines, and sparkling conversation before the concert and during intermission. Menu highlights include Vegetarian Italian wedding soup, Burratta cheese and arugula with crispy Prosciutto and balsamic vinaigrette, and Penne pasta with chicken, spring shelling pea’s garlic and basil pesto.

The Ambassador Auditorium is located at 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA. Ticket prices start at $20 and may be purchased online at www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org or by calling (626) 793-7172.

IF YOU GO:

  • What: The Pasadena Symphony presents  Grieg Piano Concerto
  • Conductor: David Lockington, conductor
  • Soloist: Gabriela Martinez, piano
  • When: Saturday, May 2 at 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Ambassador Auditorium | 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105
  • Cost: Tickets start at $20.00
  • Parking:  Valet parking with wheelchair access is available on Green Street for $15. ADA and general parking are available in the parking lots adjacent to the Auditorium  on St. John for $10. Additional ada parking is also located at the above-ground parking lot adjacent to the Auditorium (entrance on St. John Ave.) for $10. Parking purchased onsite is cash only.
  • Sierra Auto Symphony Lounge: Located on the plaza at Ambassador Auditorium. Open before the concert and during intermission.
  • Pre-Concert Discussion: Pre-concert discussion with David Lockington begins one hour before curtain and is available to all ticket holders.

 

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ABOUT THE ARTISTS

 David Lockington

In his 14th season as Music Director of the Grand Rapids Symphony, David Lockington has created a lasting legacy of artistic achievements and genuine community enrichment. 2005 marked Lockington’s conducting debut at New York’s Carnegie Hall. The New York Times commended the Grand Rapids Symphony, under his artistic leadership for being a model in the Classical music world. Lockington also earned a 2007 Grammy Award nomination and has led five recordings with Grand Rapids. The recordings have received high praise including the CD of Adolphus Hailstork’s Second and Third symphonies, released internationally on the Naxos label in 2007. Additionally, 2008 saw the successful start of the Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses. At his initiative, the Symphony has also reached out to new and diverse audiences through its annual community concert “Symphony with Soul,” now in its 12th season.

Lockington’s guest conducting engagements include appearances with the Saint Louis, Houston, Detroit, Seattle, Toronto, Vancouver, Colorado, Oregon, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Pacific, Nashville, San Diego, Kansas City and Columbus Symphonies; the Louisville Orchestra and National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa; the Buffalo, Rochester, Calgary and Louisiana Philharmonics; and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Carnegie Hall. Internationally, he has conducted the China Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra in Beijing and Taiwan, led the English Chamber Orchestra on a tour in Asia and appeared with the Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias in Spain and the Northern Sinfonia in Great Britain.

Since September 2007 Mr. Lockington has served as music director of the Modesto Symphony Orchestra in California. In May 2012, he was named principal conductor of Spain’s Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias. Prior to leading the Grand Rapids Symphony, Mr. Lockington held the music directorships of the Long Island Philharmonic, New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, Cheyenne Symphony and Ohio Chamber Orchestra. For three years he held the post of assistant conductor with the Denver Symphony Orchestra and Opera Colorado. Mr. Lockington was also associate conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

Mr. Lockington began his career as principal cellist with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. After completing his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Cambridge, he came to the U.S. on a scholarship to Yale University, where he received his master’s degree in cello performance and studied conducting with Otto Werner Mueller.

Gabriela Martinez, Piano

Lauded by The New York Times as “compelling, elegant, and incisive,” Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Martinez is quickly establishing a reputation and earning praise as a versatile artist who combines “panache and poetry” (Dallas Morning News) with a “sense of grace and clarity” (The Star Ledger).

Ms. Martinez has already amassed an impressive list of recital, concerto, and chamber music performance credits. Since making her orchestral debut at age seven, she has appeared as soloist with orchestras such as the Chicago, Houston, New Jersey, Fort Worth, Pacific, and San Francisco symphonies, the Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, MDR Rundfunkorchester, Nurnberger Philharmoniker, Symphonisches Staatsorchester Halle, Tivoli Philharmonic, and Simón Bolívar Youth Symphony Orchestra. An avid chamber musician, she has collaborated with numerous musicians and ensembles including Itzhak Perlman and the Takács and Calder quartets. Ms. Martinez has performed under conductors Gustavo Dudamel, Lawrence Foster, James Gaffigan, Dirk Brossé, Klauspeter Seibel, Giordano Bellincampi, Diego Matheuz, Christian Vasquez, Guillermo Figueroa, Susanna Mälkki, Andrew Manze, Matthias Pintscher, Anne Manson, James Conlon, Charles Dutoit, Egmon Colomer, and Pedro and Cristobal Halffter, among others.

Among the many venues where she has appeared are Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, and Alice Tully Hall in New York; Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco; Bass Hall in Fort Worth; Palace of Versailles in Paris; Grosses Festspielhaus in Salzburg; Semperoper in Dresden; Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen; the Verbier, Ravinia, Rockport Chamber Music, and Dresden music festivals; the Snow and Symphony Festival in St. Moritz; Festival de Radio France et Montpellier; Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi; the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center; and the Tokyo International Music Festival. She has performed both as soloist and chamber musician in more than 60 concert halls in the U.S. and Germany, as well as in The Netherlands, Tel Aviv, Rome, Venice, London, Brussels, Caracas, and Bogotá.

Ms. Martinez has won numerous national and international prizes and awards. Her most recent accomplishments include first prize and audience award at the Anton G. Rubinstein International Piano Competition in Dresden. She was a semifinalist at the 12th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, where she also received a Jury Discretionary Award. Her wide-ranging career includes world premieres of new music, live performance broadcasts, and interviews on TV and radio. Ms. Martinez’s performances have been featured on MDR Kultur (Germany), NHK (Japan), Radio France (France), RAI (Italy), and Deutsche Welle (Germany); on such U.S. outlets as WQXR, WNYC, NPR, CNN, PBS, 60 Minutes, ABC, and From the Top; and on numerous TV and radio stations in Venezuela.

Born in Caracas in 1984, Ms. Martinez began her piano studies with her mother Alicia Gaggioni, and studied with Miyoko Lotto at the Perlman Music Program. She earned her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School as a full scholarship student of Yoheved Kaplinsky, and worked on her doctorate with Marco Antonio de Almeida in Halle, Germany. Committed to teaching and arts advocacy, Ms. Martinez was a member of Ensemble ACJW as a Fellow in The Academy—a program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. Passionate about education, Ms. Martinez teaches privately in New York City and is on the Concert Artist Faculty at Kean University in New Jersey.

ABOUT THE PASADENA SYMPHONY ASSOCIATION

Recent Acclaim for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS

“The Pasadena Symphony signals a new direction…teeming with vitality…dripping with opulent, sexy emotion.” Los Angeles Times.

“…full of pulsating energy from first note to last… the strings were lushly resonant, the wind principals were at the top of their games, and the brass rang out with gleaming vigor.” –Pasadena Star News.

Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians.  With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industry, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.

The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the luxuriant Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. Internationally recognized, Grammy-nominated conductor, David Lockington, serves as the Pasadena Symphony Association’s Music Director, with performance-practice specialist Nicholas McGegan serving as Principal Guest Conductor.  The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, is the  Principal Pops Conductor, who succeeded  Marvin Hamlisch in the newly created Marvin Hamlisch Chair.

A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of five performing ensembles, with over 250 gifted 4th-12th grade students from more than 50 schools all over the Southern California region.  The PYSO Symphony often performs on the popular television show GLEE.

The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.

 

PASADENA YOUTH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRAS ANNOUNCE AUDITIONS FOR THE 2016-2017 SEASON

Pasadena, CA – The Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) invites all young musicians aged from 11-18 to audition for the PYSO’s upcoming 2016-2017 season. As a centerpiece of the Pasadena Symphony Association’s education initiatives, the PYSO program has continually offered robust musical training and personal development for young musicians throughout the San Gabriel Valley for more than 40 years. PYSO fosters dedication, excellence, fellowship, and passion in the development of outstanding young musicians and leaders of the future.

Auditions will be held at May 21 & 22 at Oak Ave. Intermediate School, 6623 Oak Ave, Temple City, CA from 8:30am to 5:00pm. All public, parochial, private and home school students are eligible to participate in the program. Applications can be found online here:

2016-17 PYSO Audition Application

“Our commitment to music education reaches far beyond the weekly instruction we offer to students; the PYSO serves as a resource to families to help boost each student’s overall learning curriculum from grades 4 through 12.  We’re shaping today’s youth to become community leaders of tomorrow,” stated Chief Executive Officer Lora Unger of the Pasadena Symphony Association.

PYSO is comprised of four challenging and rigorous ensembles: PYSO Philharmonic, PYSO Symphony, PYSO String Orchestra, PYSO Wind Ensemble. Placement in each ensemble is contingent upon space availability, instrumentation needs, and audition quality. Weekly rehearsals follow the academic school year beginning in September and ending in May.

The Pasadena Symphony Association partners with many venerable institutions throughout Pasadena to provide a quality educational experience for participants of the PYSO program. Thanks to the generosity of Pasadena City College, the Pasadena Unified School District, the Huntington Library, among other community partners, PYSO students rehearse and perform in venues that allow for collaborative learning and enrichment.

All four groups perform multiple times each season at a variety of venues throughout Southern California, including Big Bear, Disneyland and at Pasadena’s Ambassador Auditorium. PYSO ensembles travel each year to perform, with recent performances including Carnegie Hall as part of the New York “Sounds of Summer” International Music Festival.

IF YOU GO:

  • What: Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras Auditions
  • When: May 21 & 22
  • Where: Oak Ave Intermediate School | 6623 Oak Ave, Temple City
  • Cost: $30 due at time of audition
  • Deadline: Application must be completed in advance by May 20th. Applications available online here: 2016-17 PYSO Audition Application

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ABOUT THE PASADENA YOUTH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRAS’ ARTISTIC LEADERS

Bruce Kiesling – PYSO Philharmonic Conductor

Schizo-musical, Bruce is often confused about what kind of music he loves the most. All of his time on the podium suggests he’s a “classical” guy, but he’s also been seen on the stage of the Hollywood Bowl conducting with Stevie Wonder and Latin superstars Juanes and Gloria Estefan.

His current conducting positions include staff positions with the Pasadena Symphony and the Tulare County Symphony. As music director of the latter, ticket sales and sponsorships have increased to record levels and his concert comments and insider stories have become popular additions to programs. The orchestra’s artistic profile has grown as well, including this season’s performance of “The Rite of Spring,” a cycle of all of the symphonies of Tchaikovsky and Beethoven, and the continuation of a Mahler cycle. Bruce’s other passion is music education, where regularly works with outstanding youth orchestra programs. For five years, Bruce was the YOLA conductor for the Los Angeles Philharmonic where he lead multiple orchestras of different levels including most of the 700 students at YOLA’s three sites.  YOLA is Gustavo Dudamel’s signature music education program, which brings free-of-charge musical opportunities to underserved youth in Los Angeles. In addition, he has been the music director of the Pasadena Youth Symphony Philharmonic for the past two years.

Bruce holds graduate degrees from the University of Michigan, The University of Miami, and The University of North Carolina School of the Arts. More recently, 2013 saw a guest appearance with the Pacific Symphony and also Bruce’s appointments with the Pasadena Symphony (as assistant conductor) and the Pasadena Youth Symphony Philharmonic (as Music Director). 2015 opens with a performance with the Long Beach Symphony in January.

 Jack Taylor – PYSO Symphony Conductor

Mr. Taylor, a former member of PYSO, is now recognized as one of the top music educators in Southern California. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Southern California and a Master of Science in Music Education from Southern Oregon University. His background of excellence in music training and his passion for teaching students provides a well-balanced approach for music education. Mr. Taylor has taught music in Temple City for nine years at the elementary and intermediate school levels. His groups consistently receive superior ratings at area music festivals. In addition to his groups at Temple City, Mr. Taylor serves as the conductor of the Pasadena City College Community Concert Band and the Pasadena Summer Youth Chamber Orchestra.

Pin Chen – String Orchestra Conductor

Pin Chen began studying the violin with her father at the age of six and has been teaching private violin and viola lessons since she was 14 years old. She received her Bachelor of Music degree in instrumental and general music education with Department Honors from Northwestern University. Ms. Chen is currently Orchestra Director at Arcadia High School, which boasts one of the largest school orchestra programs in the country. She is the President and Founder of Crescendo Young Musicians Guild, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization for music education, performance, and community service for youth of all socio-economic backgrounds in the LA area. Ms. Chen is listed in the Cambridge Who’s Who of Executives and Professionals and is an active member of the MTAC, SCSBOA, CMEA, and MENC.

Gary Yearick – Wind Ensemble Conductor

Gary received his Bachelor of Music Degree from Long Beach State University in 1979. He has a Single Subject Credential in Music, and a Junior College Life Credential. Gary has taught instrumental music at Temple City High School, Oak Ave. Intermediate School in Temple City, and currently teaches at Oaks Middle School in Ontario. Gary has been a member of the Southern California Band and Orchestra Association since 1980. He has been a PAC Judge since 1987, a Head Judge since 1991, and currently is VP, Parade Adjudication. He has been member of the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Association since 1987. Gary enjoys sporting events, live concerts and spending time with his family. Gary has 3 grown children and resides in Alta Loma, with his wife Pamela.

ABOUT THE PASADENA SYMPHONY ASSOCIATION

Recent Acclaim for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS

“The Pasadena Symphony signals a new direction…teeming with vitality…dripping with opulent, sexy emotion.” Los Angeles Times.

“…full of pulsating energy from first note to last… the strings were lushly resonant, the wind principals were at the top of their games, and the brass rang out with gleaming vigor.” –Pasadena Star News.

Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians.  With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industry, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.

The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the luxuriant Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. Internationally recognized, Grammy-nominated conductor, David Lockington, serves as the Pasadena Symphony Association’s Music Director, with performance-practice specialist Nicholas McGegan serving as Principal Guest Conductor.  The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, is the  Principal Pops Conductor, who succeeded  Marvin Hamlisch in the newly created Marvin Hamlisch Chair.

A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of five performing ensembles, with over 250 gifted 4th-12th grade students from more than 50 schools all over the Southern California region.  The PYSO Symphony often performs on the popular television show GLEE.

The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.

 

2015 Pops Season

An Incomparable Concert-Going Experience Awaits You

PopsJune14 Happy Conductor_16U0534

June 20, 2015 – Big Band Swing

July 11, 2015 – Classical Mystery Tour

August 1, 2015 – The Sinatra Project

August 22, 2015 – To Ella and Nat with Love

September 12, 2015 – A Night at the Oscars!

MICHAEL FEINSTEIN & THE PASADENA POPS ANNOUNCE 2015 SIERRA ACURA SUMMER CONCERT SERIES

Pasadena, CA–Tickets on sale now for Michael Feinstein’s Sinatra Project, Marilyn Maye, Jeremy Jordan, Anne Hampton Callaway, music of the Beatles and more at the Los Angeles Arboretum Pasadena, CA –Principal Pops Conductor Michael Feinstein and the Pasadena POPS announce their one of a kind, popular outdoor summer concert series at the Los Angeles Arboretum with five events sure to make your summer sizzle. Swing into Summer on June 20 with Big Band Swing; celebrate the best of the music of the Beatles with the Classical Mystery Tour on July 11; the multi-platinum-selling, twotime Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer Michael Feinstein brings his luxurious vocals in his Sinatra Project on August 1; hear definitive performances in To Ella and Nat with Love on August 22 paying tribute to two of the most iconic American Singers; and close the summer with the quintessential Feinstein experience with a special tribute to the glamour of the Academy Awards with A Night at the Oscars! on September 12. The 2015 Sierra Acura Summer Pops season is jam-packed with vibrant talent spanning the ages!

“When the Pasadena Pops signed Michael Feinstein to be its conductor in 2013, it looked like a coup and a gamble. The concept that he established in his first concert— exploring the highlights, nooks and crannies of American popular music — is proving to be infinitely flexible…his showbiz savvy made the cascade of data entertaining, never overwhelming…the gamble looks to be a roaring success.” – The Los Angeles Times

“At the POPS, you’ll enjoy definitive performances of music that personify the Great American Songbook in so many ways,” says Feinstein adding “ I’ve chosen the guest artists because they are master entertainers who will add exciting panache to each show – it’s a rare chance to experience music performed this way at one of the most beautiful outdoor venues anywhere.”

June 20, 2015

Big Band Swing

Audiences will swing to the big-band sounds of the 1930’s and 40’s with American cabaret singer, Marilyn Maye who brings over 80-years of talent to the Pops stage. Ella Fitzgerald proclaimed her as the “greatest white female singer in the world.” With award-winning vocalist, Michael Andrew, praised by Larry King Live “as one of the great singers of all time” this collaboration will mesmerize with hits such as “Moonglow,” “Stardust,” “Minnie the Moocher,” “Serenade in Blue,” “Night and Day,” “Misty,” “On the Street Where You Live” and “Get Happy.”

July 11, 2015

Classical Mystery Tour

The renowned artists of Classical Mystery Tour is back by popular demand, with a fresh set list of Beatles favorites, featuring hits from Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band – with “Let it Be,” “Yesterday,” “Strawberry Fields Forever,” “Penny Lake,” “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” “A Day in the Life” and so much more, performed with a full orchestra.

August 1, 2015

The Sinatra Project

Michael Feinstein puts the conducting baton down for one night only to sing his Sinatra Project, an evening entirely devoted to celebrate the brilliance of “The Voice” as only Feinstein can. Curating an evening solely dedicated to Ol’ Blue Eyes’ biggest hits, Feinstein sings “Luck Be A Lady,” “Fly Me to The Moon,” “The Way You Look Tonight,” “The Lady Is A Tramp,” “For Once In My Life” and more.

August 22, 2015

To Ella and Nat with Love

The POPS pays tribute to Ella Fitzgerald and Nat King Cole, two of the most iconic American singers, with definitive performances by vocalists Denzal Sinclaire and Ann Hampton Callaway. Tony nominee, platinum selling songwriter and Theater World Award winner, Jazz/Cabaret diva Ann Hampton Callaway joins the Pops alongside Denzal Sinclaire, a singer of subtle skill and with a relaxed and sophisticated approach to songs, was Canada Magazine’s four year consecutive winner of Male Jazz Vocalist for a magical night featuring “Mona Lisa,” ‘Unforgettable,” “When I Fall in Love,” “Lady Be Good,” “How High the Moon,” “Body and Soul,” “Mr. Paganini,” “In A Sentimental Mood” and more.

A Night at the Oscars!

September 12, 2015

The Pasadena Pops closes the summer concert season with the quintessential Feinstein experience – bringing the glitz and glamour of the Academy Awards to the Arboretum with a special tribute to the glamour of the Academy Awards with vocalists Sheléa Frazier and Jeremy Jordan. Frazier, a versatile rising star joins Jeremy Jordan, Tony and Grammy award nominee, recently seen in the film adaptation of “The Last 5 Years,” will remember the winners, the loser and everything in between with an evening of Hollywood favorites!

All concerts are held at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden. Grounds open for picnicking and dining at 5:30 p.m. and performances begin at 7:30 p.m. Among many venue amenities, audiences can enjoy pre-ordered gourmet dining packages for on-site pickup just steps from your table from Julienne, Marston’s, and Claud & Co.; the food court will host mouth-watering food trucks plus specialty ice creams by Choctal. The experience is now even more convenient with two full beverage centers serving fine wines, beer, coffee and soft drinks plus exclusive hotel packages for POPS patrons at Pasadena’s landmark Hotel Constance. Patrons may also visit the Pasadena Humane Society’s Mobile Adoption Unit, which will be on-site prior to each concert with deserving animals in need of a forever home as part of the Pups for POPS program.

Subscribers may pre-purchase parking on-site at the Arboretum, and all concertgoers enjoy free parking at the adjacent Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with complimentary non-stop shuttle service to the Arboretum’s main entrance. Audiences get the ultimate outdoor concert experience: large LED video screens to see the artists and orchestra up close, superior sound quality and the high-quality production value that is a signature of the Pasadena POPS. Don’t miss the best outdoor dinner party in town with spacious circular table seating with fine linens, or lawn seating for those who want to bring a blanket – each option carries on the tradition of picnic-dining with your family and friends with Michael Feinstein and Pasadena’s premier POPS orchestra!

The Arboretum is located at 301 North Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA. Single tickets and season subscriptions are now on sale and are available by calling the box office at (626)-793-7172, online at PasadenaSymphony-Pops.org or at the Arboretum on the day of the concerts.

 

IF YOU GO:

  • What: The Pasadena Symphony presents the 2015 Pasadena POPS with Principal Pops Conductor Michael Feinstein
  • When: June 20, July 11, August 1, August 22, September 12 at 7:30 p.m.
  • Where: The LA County Arboretum | 301 N Baldwin Ave., Arcadia, CA 91007
  • Cost: Tickets start at $20.00
  • Dining: Gates open at 5:30pm. Guests are welcome to bring their own food and drink or visit one of the many onsite gourmet food vendors.
  • Parking: Subscribers have the opportunity to purchase onsite Arboretum parking. Single ticket holders may park for free at the Westfield Santa Anita shopping center with free non-stop shuttles to the main gate.

PASADENA SYMPHONY PRESENTS BEETHOVEN PASTORAL SYMPHONY NO. 6 WITH NICHOLAS MCGEGAN

Pasadena CA – Experience Beethoven’s love of nature with Nicholas McGegan as your guide with the Pasadena Symphony’s performance of Beethoven’s “Pastoral” Symphony No. 6 on Saturday, March 21, 2015 at Ambassador Auditorium with both matinee and evening performances at 2:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.

The Los Angeles Times celebrated McGegan to be “in fact the sunniest conductor in classical music!” and the Crescenta Valley Weekly said “if performances under McGegan are any indication, the Pasadena Symphony seems to be on the cusp of a golden age.”

Themes of spiritual renewal, pastoral landscapes, dramatic storms and startling beauty pull you into Beethoven’s sonic painting of the great outdoors. The prodigiously talented Geneva Lewis continues The Pasadena Symphony’s tradition of showcasing the stars of tomorrow here today with Mozart’s stunningly beautiful Violin Concerto No. 3. Heralded as one of the world’s top 20 young violinists, Geneva Lewis is a current student of the Pasadena Symphony’s community partner, the Colburn Community School for Performing Arts.

Performances are accompanied by a popular pre-concert discussion that gives the audience insights into the music and musicians one-hour before curtain. Audiences are invited to luxuriate in the lively Sierra Auto Symphony Lounge, yet another addition to the delightful and elegant concert experience the Pasadena Symphony offers. Located in the beautiful outdoor plaza at the Ambassador Auditorium, audiences can enjoy a deliciously prepared menu specially created for the evening by Claud and Co, fine wines, and sparkling conversation before the concert and during intermission. Menu highlights include hot and sour soup with shredded vegetables, Chinese chicken salad, chicken and vegetable pot stickers and scrumptious smoked salmon spring rolls plus almond cookies.

 

The Ambassador Auditorium is located at 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA. Ticket prices start at $35 and may be purchased online at www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org or by calling (626) 793-7172.


IF YOU GO:

  • What: The Pasadena Symphony presents Beethoven 6
  • Conductor: Nicholas McGegan, Principal Guest Conductor
  • Soloist: Geneva Lewis, violin
  • When: Saturday, March 21 at 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Ambassador Auditorium | 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105
  • Cost: Tickets start at $35.00
  • Parking:  Valet parking with wheelchair access is available on Green Street for $15. Handicap and general parking is available next to the Auditorium at the covered parking structure for $10. Additional handicap parking is also located at the above-ground parking lot adjacent to the Auditorium (entrance on St. John Ave.) for $10. Parking purchased onsite is cash only.
  • Symphony Lounge: Located on the plaza at Ambassador Auditorium. Open before the concert and during intermission.
  • Pre-Concert Discussion: Pre-concert discussion with Nicholas McGegan begins one hour before curtain and is available to all ticket holders.

PASADENA SYMPHONY 2015-2016 SINGPOLI CLASSICS TICKETS NOW ON SALE

Pasadena, CA – The Pasadena Symphony announces the expansion of its 2015-16 Season with an increase to seven concert weekends beginning Fall 2015. Backed by strong single ticket sales and subscriber loyalty, its Singpoli Classics series will increase to six-concerts (from five) with both 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. performances at Pasadena’s historic Ambassador Auditorium. The expansion also includes the annually sold out Holiday Candlelight Concert on December 19, 2015 with both 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. performances at All Saints Church.  The Pasadena Symphony also cements its artistic leadership plans with an eye for long term stability in its artistic leaders – Music Director David Lockington and Principal Guest Conductor Nicholas McGegan – who have also renewed their contracts with the Pasadena Symphony through 2019.

The 2015-16 Season kicks off on October 10, 2015 with Dvorák’s New World Symphony and Bella Hristova performing Pulitzer Prize winning composer Kevin Puts’s lyrically beautiful Violin Concerto. Billboard’s 2014 top selling Classical Instrumentalist Anne Akiko Myers will bring her Vivaldi’s Four Seasons on November 7, 2015 – which she recorded with Lockington and debuted #1 on the Classical Billboard Charts. Other season highlights include Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 “Emperor,” Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with Jennifer Frautschi, an alumnus of the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras program, Nicholas McGegan’s masterful interpretation of Mozart Symphony No. 40 alongside David Lockington performing the Sawyer’s Cello Concerto and a French themed season finale in April 2016 with An American in Paris and Cliburn Silver medalist Joyce Yang in Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major.

Lora Unger, CEO of the Pasadena Symphony describes the 2015-2016 season as “… a milestone for the orchestra as we enter our 88th season.  Since making the Ambassador Auditorium our home nearly 5 years ago, the Singpoli Classics Series has become the premiere destination for live symphonic music in Pasadena and the San Gabriel Valley,” adding “we’ve been poised for growth in our Classics Series for some time now and next season is ripe with a performance schedule you just can’t refuse.”

“Right off the bat, it looks as if Pasadena will have a good time with Lockington… [his] expressive technique is yielding results — and quickly.”  – Los Angeles Times

The Pasadena Symphony provides a quintessential experience specially designed for the music lover, the social butterfly, and the inner epicurean in us all with the addition of the lively Sierra Auto Symphony Lounge, yet another addition to the care-free and elegant concert experience the Pasadena Symphony offers. A posh setting at Ambassador Auditorium’s beautiful outdoor plaza, audiences enjoy uniquely prepared menus for each concert from Claud &Co, fine wines by Michero Family Wines, plus music before the concert and during intermission. Six-concert subscription packages start at $180, regular individually priced tickets start at $35 and may be purchased by calling (626) 793-7172 or by clicking the button below.

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October 10, 2015
Dvorák’s New World Symphony

David Lockington, conductor
Bella Hristova, violin

Wagner                  Die Meistersinger: Prelude
Puts                       Violin Concerto
Dvorák                  Symphony No. 9 “From the New World”

November 7, 2015
Vivaldi Four Seasons

David Lockington, conductor
Anne Akiko Meyers, violin

Bach                      Air on the G String
Dorman                 Concerto Grosso
Pachelbel              Canon
Purcell                   Chacony
Vivaldi                   The Four Seasons

December 19, 2016
Holiday Candlelight

Grant Cooper, conductor
Christina Saffran, vocalist

The Donald Brinegar Singers
Los Angeles Children’s Chorus
LA Bronze, Handbell Choir

January 9, 2016
Beethoven “Emperor” Piano Concerto

Nicholas McGegan, conductor
Sean Chen, piano

Prokofiev            Classical Symphony
Schubert             Unfinished Symphony
Beethoven          Piano Concerto No. 5 “Emperor”

February 13, 2016
Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto

David Lockington, conductor
Jennifer Frautschi, violin

Tchaikovsky        Violin Concerto
Sibelius                Symphony No. 2

March 19, 2016
Mozart Symphony No. 40

Nicholas McGegan, conductor
David Lockington, cello

Beethoven         Egmont Overture
Sawyers             Cello Concerto
Mozart                Symphony No. 40

April 30, 2016
An American in Paris

David Lockington, conductor
Joyce Yang, piano

Offenbach          Orpheus in the Underworld
Satie                   Gymnopédie No. 1
Ravel                  Piano Concerto in G Major
Fauré                  Pelléas et Mélisande Suite
Gershwin            An American in Paris

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ABOUT THE ARTISTS

David Lockington
In his 14th season as Music Director of the Grand Rapids Symphony, David Lockington has created a lasting legacy of artistic achievements and genuine community enrichment. 2005 marked Lockington’s conducting debut at New York’s Carnegie Hall. The New York Times commended the Grand Rapids Symphony, under his artistic leadership for being a model in the Classical music world. Lockington also earned a 2007 Grammy Award nomination and has led five recordings with Grand Rapids. The recordings have received high praise including the CD of Adolphus Hailstork’s Second and Third symphonies, released internationally on the Naxos label in 2007. Additionally, 2008 saw the successful start of the Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses. At his initiative, the Symphony has also reached out to new and diverse audiences through its annual community concert “Symphony with Soul,” now in its 12th season.

Lockington’s guest conducting engagements include appearances with the Saint Louis, Houston, Detroit, Seattle, Toronto, Vancouver, Colorado, Oregon, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Pacific, Nashville, San Diego, Kansas City and Columbus Symphonies; the Louisville Orchestra and National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa; the Buffalo, Rochester, Calgary and Louisiana Philharmonics; and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Carnegie Hall. Internationally, he has conducted the China Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra in Beijing and Taiwan, led the English Chamber Orchestra on a tour in Asia and appeared with the Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias in Spain and the Northern Sinfonia in Great Britain.

Since September 2007 Mr. Lockington has served as music director of the Modesto Symphony Orchestra in California. In May 2012, he was named principal conductor of Spain’s Orquesta Sinfonica del Principado de Asturias. Prior to leading the Grand Rapids Symphony, Mr. Lockington held the music directorships of the Long Island Philharmonic, New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, Cheyenne Symphony and Ohio Chamber Orchestra. For three years he held the post of assistant conductor with the Denver Symphony Orchestra and Opera Colorado. Mr. Lockington was also associate conductor of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.

Mr. Lockington began his career as principal cellist with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. After completing his Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Cambridge, he came to the U.S. on a scholarship to Yale University, where he received his master’s degree in cello performance and studied conducting with Otto Werner Mueller.

Nicholas McGegan
“If the performances under Nic McGegan are any indication, the Pasadena Symphony seems to be on the cusp of a golden age. Long may it last.” praised Ted Ayala of the Crescenta Valley Weekly of Principal Guest Conductor of the Pasadena Symphony. As he embarks on his fourth decade on the podium, Nicholas McGegan — long hailed as “one of the finest baroque conductors of his generation” (London Independent) and “an expert in 18th-century style” (The New Yorker) — is increasingly recognized for his probing and revelatory explorations of music of all periods.

Through 27 years as its music director, McGegan has established the San Francisco-based Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Philharmonia Chorale as one of the world’s leading period-performance ensembles, with notable appearances at Carnegie Hall, the London Proms, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, and the International Handel Festival, Göttingen where he was artistic director from 1991 to 2011. Throughout his career, McGegan has defined an approach to period style that sets the current standard: serious and intelligent, but never dogmatic. More recently, Philharmonia Baroque is branching out under his leadership. Calling the group’s recent recording of the Brahms Serenades “a truly treasurable disc,” James R. Oestreich in The New York Times made special note of the performance’s “energy and spirit.”

McGegan’s ability to engage players and audiences alike has made him a pioneer in broadening the reach of historically informed practice beyond the world of period ensembles to conventional symphonic forces. His guest-conducting appearances with major orchestras — including the New York, Los Angeles, and Hong Kong Philharmonics; the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Toronto and Sydney Symphonies; the Cleveland and the Philadelphia Orchestras; and the Northern Sinfonia and Scottish Chamber Orchestra — often feature Baroque repertoire alongside Classical, Romantic, 20th-century and even brand-new works: Mendelssohn, Sibelius, Britten, Bach and Handel with the Utah Symphony; Poulenc and Mozart with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Mahler and Mozart with the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra; and the premiere, in 2012, of Stephen Hough’s Missa Mirabilis with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, paired with Haydn, Brahms and Mendelssohn.

Active in opera as well as the concert hall, McGegan was principal conductor of Sweden’s perfectly preserved 18th-century theater Drottingholm from 1993 to 1996. He has also been a frequent guest conductor with opera companies including Covent Garden, San Francisco, Santa Fe and Washington.

His discography of more than 100 releases includes the world premiere recording of Handel’s Susanna, which garnered both a Gramophone Award and a GRAMMY® nomination, and recent issues of that composer’s Solomon, Samson and Acis and Galatea (the little-known version adapted by Felix Mendelssohn). He is also credited with the first performance in modern times of Handel’s masterly but mislaidGloria. Under its own label, Philharmonia Baroque Productions (PBP), in addition to the Brahms recording Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra has recently released five acclaimed archival recordings: Berlioz’s Les Nuits d’été and selected Handel arias with the late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson; Haydn Symphonies No. 88, 101 and 104, nominated for a GRAMMY® Award; Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and other concerti with Elizabeth Blumenstock as violin soloist; Handel’s Atalanta with soprano Dominique Labelle in the title role; and Brahms’ beloved Serenades.

Mr. McGegan is committed to the next generation of musicians, frequently conducting and coaching students in residencies and engagements at Yale University, the Juilliard School, Harvard University, the Colburn School, Aspen Music Festival and School, and the Music Academy of the West.

Born in England, Nicholas McGegan was educated at Cambridge and Oxford and taught at the Royal College of Music, London. He was made an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for 2010 “for services to music overseas.” His awards also include the Halle Handel Prize; an honorary professorship at Georg-August University, Göttingen; the Order of Merit of the State of Lower Saxony (Germany); the Medal of Honour of the City of Göttingen, and an official Nicholas McGegan Day, declared by the Mayor of San Francisco in recognition of two decades of distinguished work with Philharmonia Baroque.

Bella Hristova
Acclaimed for her passionate, powerful performances, beautiful sound, and compelling command of her instrument, violinist Bella Hristova is a young musician with a growing international career as a soloist and recording artist.  The Strad has praised, “Every sound she draws is superb,” and The Washington Post noted that she is “a player of impressive power and control.”  Recipient of a 2013 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Ms. Hristova’s 2014-2015 season features a mix of concerto, recital and chamber music performances, as well as educational outreach activities.  She showcases her wide-ranging repertoire this season, as she performs ten different concertos, from Bernstein and Corigliano to Prokofiev and Sibelius, as well as the world premiere of an unaccompanied work by JoanTower.  She performs chamber music with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and at the Cactus Pear Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, the Skaneateles Festival, and the Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival.  Ms. Hristova appears in encore recital performances in the Young Concert Artists Series at Merkin Concert Hall and at the Kennedy Center.

Ms. Hristova has performed extensively as soloist with orchestra including with Pinchas Zukerman and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Lincoln Center, with the New York String Orchestra under Jaime Laredo at Carnegie Hall, as well as with the Mississippi Symphony, City of London Sinfonia, Orquesta Sinfonica de Venezuela, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra, Korea’s Cheongju Symphony Orchestra, at the Cerritos Center for the Arts, at Free For All at Town Hall, at the Shanghai International Music Festival, and at Seoul National University.  Her most recent recording, Bella Unaccompanied (A.W. Tonegold Records), features works for solo violin by Corigliano, Kevin Puts, Piazzolla, Milstein and J. S. Bach.

A sought-after chamber musician, Ms. Hristova performs frequently with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and at many music festivals including the Young Concert Artists Festival in Tokyo, the Grand Teton Festival, the Brevard Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Ravinia’s Steans Institute, the Mainly Mozart Festival, Music from Angel Fire, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival and the Marlboro Music Festival.  She has appeared on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion on National Public Radio.

In addition to the 2013 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Bella Hristova is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including First Prize in the 2009 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, First Prize in the 2007 Michael Hill International Violin Competition in New Zealand, and Laureate of the 2006 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis. She made her New York debut in the Young Concert Artists Series at Merkin Concert Hall and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and at the Isabella Gardner Museum in Boston. For three seasons, she has been honored with the Gordon and Harriet Greenfield Foundation Artist Management Fellowship of YCA.

As a result of winning the Michael Hill International Violin Competition, Ms. Hristova made a critically acclaimed concert tour of New Zealand, and a similarly acclaimed CD of solo violin works by the Belgian virtuoso Charles de Bériot (Naxos). Music Web International praised her first recording, “…this disc is an absolute winner… …The musical diversity of these pieces is a delight. None of which would count for much if they were not played with the extraordinary virtuosity and musical maturity of Bella Hristova. … Hristova combines jaw-dropping technical prowess with real style.”

Born in Pleven, Bulgaria in 1985 to Russian and Bulgarian parents, Ms. Hristova began violin studies at the age of six. At twelve, she participated in master classes with Ruggiero Ricci at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. In 2003, she entered the Curtis Institute of Music, where she worked with Ida Kavafian (YCA Alumna) and studied chamber music with Steven Tenenbom. She received her Artist Diploma with Jaime Laredo at IndianaUniversity in 2010. Ms. Hristova plays a 1655 Nicolò Amati violin, once owned by the violinist Louis Krasner.

Anne Akiko Meyers
Anne Akiko Meyers is celebrated around the world for her artistry and ability to connect with audiences from the concert stage, online, and in television, and radio broadcasts. She regularly performs in recital and as guest soloist with many of the world’s top orchestras, and is a best-selling recording artist who has released 30 albums.

Future highlights include performances with Leonard Slatkin and the Orchestre de Lyon, Kristjan Järvi and the MDR Leipzig Orchestra, a new recording with Keith Lockhart and the London Symphony Orchestra, and recital and solo appearances throughout North America. An avid commissioner of new music, Meyers will premiere Mason Bates and Somei Satoh’s music as well as new arrangements from the American Songbook music in numerous cities nationwide.

This fall, eOne Music releases The American Masters, Ms. Meyers’s 30th release, featuring the world premiere recordings of the Mason Bates Violin Concerto and John Corigliano’s ‘Lullaby for Natalie’ (written for Ms.Meyers’s first born daughter). Also featured, is the Samuel Barber Violin Concerto, with the London Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leonard Slatkin. In addition, Anne will make the world premiere of the Samuel Jones Violin Concerto with the All-Star Orchestra, conducted by Gerard Schwarz, in a nationwide PBS broadcast special, to be aired in spring, 2015 and released on DVD by Naxos.

In recent seasons, Anne released the Four Seasons: The Vivaldi Album, and Air, the Bach Album, on eOne Music. Both recordings debuted at #1 on the classical Billboard charts and received great critical acclaim. The Vivaldi Album was the recording debut of the ‘Ex-Vieuxtemps’ Guarneri del Gesu violin, dated 1741, which was recently awarded to Meyers for her lifetime use. This instrument is considered by many to be the finest sounding violin in existence. Watch the story here.

Meyers’s recent performances included recital and concerto appearances in North and South America, Europe and Asia, including performances with the Chicago, Detroit, Nashville, and Richmond Symphony Orchestras of the Mason Bates Violin Concerto, a work she co-commissioned and premiered with the Pittsburgh Symphony in December 2012.

Anne Akiko Meyers has collaborated with a diverse array of artists outside of traditional classical, including jazz icons, Chris Botti and Wynton Marsalis, avant-garde musician, Ryuichi Sakamoto, electronic music pioneer, Isao Tomita, popera group, Il Divo and singer, Michael Bolton. She performed the National Anthem in front of 42,000 fans at Safeco Field in Seattle, and appeared twice on The Tonight Show and was featured in a segment on MSNBC’s Countdown with Keith Olbermann that became the third most popular story of the year.

Ms. Meyers has been featured on NPR’s Morning Edition with Linda Wertheimer and All Things Considered with Robert Siegel and has been regularly featured on Boston’s WGBH, Chicago’s WFMT, New York’s WQXR radio and SiriusXM Radio. Best-selling novelist, J.Courtney Sullivan, consulted with Ms. Meyers for The Engagements, and based one of the main characters loosely on Ms. Meyers’s career. Anne was also featured on the popular NickJr. show, Take Me To Your Mother, with Andrea Rosen on the episode, ‘Andrea Gets in Tune’.

Anne Akiko Meyers was born in San Diego, California and grew up in Southern California. Her teachers include Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld at the Colburn School of Performing Arts, Josef Gingold at Indiana University, and Felix Galimir, Masao Kawasaki and Dorothy DeLay at the Juilliard School. She received the Avery Fisher Career Grant and serves on the advisory board of Composers Concordance and Young Concert Artists. Ms.Meyers lives with her husband and two young daughters in Austin, Texas.

Sean Chen
Pianist Sean Chen is being hailed as a rising star with a “million-volt smile” and a “formidable set of fingers” (Dallas Morning News). In 2013 Chen won the American Pianists Association’s DeHaan Classical Fellowship, one of the most lucrative and significant prizes available to an American pianist. He also won Third Prize at the 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, becoming the first American to reach the finals since 1997. The 27-year-old American pianist has appeared as soloist with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra under Gerard Schwarz, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra under Leonard Slatkin and Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Corpus Christi, New West, Phoenix and San Diego symphony orchestras, and the Suwon City Philharmonic in South Korea. Last season Chen performed in recital at Jordan Hall in Boston, the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago, SubCulture in New York City, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and on tour in the Czech Republic.

Highlights of Chen’s 2014-15 season include debuts with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra at the Kimmel Center, the symphony orchestras of Hartford, Tucson, Santa Fe, and Carmel, and his return to the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. He appears in recital in the Steinway Series at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., the Salk Institute in San Diego, Jacksonville, New Orleans, on tour in Hawaii, and with soprano Jessica Rivera in Thousand Oaks, CA. A proponent of the music of our time, Chen has performed new works by Lisa Bielawa, Michael Williams, Nicco Athens, Michael Gilbertson, and Reinaldo Moya. Recent CD releases include an album of Michael Williams’s solo piano works on the Parma label, a live recording from the Cliburn competition released by Harmonia Mundi, and La Valse, a solo recording on the Steinway label, as part of his American Pianists Association prize. The New York Times praised Chen’s “alluring, colorfully shaded renditions” of works by Scriabin and Ravel on the latter, and Los Angeles Music Examiner noted, “Los Angeles native Sean Chen has the rare ability to combine poetic musical sensibilities and dazzling technical prowess.”

Born in 1988 in Margate, FL, Chen grew up in the Los Angeles area of Oak Park, CA. His impressive achievements before college included receiving an NFAA ARTSweek award, a prize at the California International Young Artist Competition, the Los Angeles Music Center’s Spotlight Award, the Evelyn Vonar Storrs Scholarship, and the Glenn Miller Scholarship. These honors combined with his extraordinary intellect facilitated offers of acceptance by MIT, Harvard, and the Juilliard School. Choosing to study music, Chen earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees at Juilliard, where he won the 2010 Gina Bachauer Piano Competition, the 2010 Munz Scholarship, and first prize at the 2008 Juilliard Concerto Competition.

Chen received his Artist Diploma at the Yale School of Music in 2014 as a George W. Miles Fellowship recipient, and a student of Hung-Kuan Chen and Tema Blackstone. His former teachers include Jerome Lowenthal, Matti Raekallio, and Edward Francis. He has been featured in a nationally syndicated radio series that chronicled the finals week of the APA’s competition, as well as on From the Top, American Public Media’s Performance Today, WQXR (New York), WFMT (Chicago), WGBH (Boston), and WFYI (Indianapolis). The webcast of his April 2013 performance of Bartók’s Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Indianapolis Symphony can be viewed at AmericanPianists.org.

In March 2014 International Piano magazine named Chen “One To Watch.” He is currently under the management of the American Pianists Association. When not at the piano, Chen enjoys tinkering with computers and composing.

Jennifer Frautschi
Two-time GRAMMY nominee and Avery Fisher career grant recipient Jennifer Frautschi has garnered worldwide acclaim as an adventurous musician with a remarkably wide-ranging repertoire. As the Chicago Tribune noted, “violinist Jennifer Frautschi is molding a career with smart interpretations of both warhorses and rarities.” Equally at home in the classic and contemporary repertoire, her recent seasons have featured innumerable performances and recordings of works ranging from Brahms and Schumann to Berg and Schoenberg. She has also had the privilege of premiering several new works composed for her by prominent composers of today.

Ms. Frautschi has appeared as soloist with Pierre Boulez and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Christoph Eschenbach and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival, and at Wigmore Hall and Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival. Selected by Carnegie Hall for its Distinctive Debuts series, she made her New York recital debut in 2004. As part of the European Concert Hall Organization’s Rising Stars series, Ms. Frautschi also made debuts that year at ten of Europe’s most celebrated concert venues, including the Salzburg Mozarteum, Vienna Konzerthaus, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, La Cité de la Musique in Paris, and Brussels’ Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie. She has also been heard in recital at the Ravinia Festival, La Jolla Chamber Music Society, Washington’s Phillips Collection, Boston’s Gardner Museum, Beijing’s Imperial Garden, Monnaie Opera in Brussels, La Chaux des Fonds in Switzerland, and San Miguel de Allende Festival in Mexico.

Highlights of Ms. Frautschi’s 2013-14 season included performances with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and Tucson Symphony, as well as return engagements with the Alabama, Arkansas, Belo Horizonte (Brazil), Chattanooga, Phoenix, and Toledo Symphonies and the Rhode Island Philharmonic. She returned to DaCamera of Houston and the Helicon Foundation in New York for concerts on all-gut strings with period instruments. In the summer of 2014 she performed at the Ojai, La Jolla, Santa Fe, Moab, Bridgehampton, and SaltBay Music Festivals. Recent seasons include the world premiere of James Stephenson’s Violin Concerto, a piece written for her, with the Minnesota Orchestra and Osmo Vänskä; Barber Concerto with the orchestra of the Teatro di San Carlo Opera House in Naples, James Conlon conducting; and performances with the Eugene, Jacksonville, Milwaukee, and Utah Symphonies, and the Buffalo Philharmonic. She has also soloed with the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, Kansas City Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, San Diego Symphony, and Seattle Symphony, and toured the United States with the Czech Symphony Orchestra.

Ms. Frautschi performs regularly at the Caramoor Center for the Arts, where she has appeared annually since she was first invited by André Previn to play there as a “Rising Star” at the age of 18, during her freshman year at Harvard.

Her discography includes three widely-praised CDs for Artek: an orchestral recording of the Prokofiev concerti with Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony, and highly-acclaimed discs of music of Ravel and Stravinsky, and of 20th century works for solo violin. She has also recorded several discs for Naxos, including the Stravinsky Violin Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, conducted by the legendary Robert Craft, and two GRAMMY-nominated recordings with the Fred Sherry Quartet, of Schoenberg’s Concerto for String Quartet and Orchestra [nominated for ‘Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra)’ in 2006] and the Schoenberg Third String Quartet [nominated for ‘Best Chamber Music Performance’ in 2011]. Her most recent releases are a recording of Romantic Horn Trios, with hornist Eric Ruske and pianist Stephen Prutsman, and the Stravinsky Duo Concertant with pianist Jeremy Denk. With pianist John Blacklow she will soon be featured on two releases by Albany Records: one disc devoted to the three sonatas of Robert Schumann, including the rarely performed posthumous sonata; the second an exploration of recent additions to the violin and piano repertoire by contemporary American composers Barbara White, Steven Mackey, and Stephen Hartke.

Born in Pasadena, California, Ms. Frautschi began the violin at age three. She was a student of Robert Lipsett at the Colburn School for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles. She also attended Harvard, the New England Conservatory of Music, and The Juilliard School, where she studied with Robert Mann. She performs on a 1722 Antonio Stradivarius violin known as the “ex-Cadiz,” on generous loan to her from a private American foundation.

Joyce Yang
Blessed with “poetic and sensitive pianism” (Washington Post) and a “wondrous sense of color” (San Francisco Classical Voice), pianist Joyce Yang captivates audiences across the globe with her virtuosity, lyricism, and magnetic stage presence. At just 27, she has established herself as one of the leading artists of her generation through her innovative solo recitals and collaborations with the world’s top orchestras. In 2010 she received an Avery Fisher Career Grant, one of classical music’s most prestigious accolades.

Yang came to international attention in 2005 when she won the silver medal at the 12th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. The youngest contestant, she took home two additional awards: the Steven De Groote Memorial Award for Best Performance of Chamber Music (with the Takàcs Quartet) and the Beverley Taylor Smith Award for Best Performance of a New Work.

Since her spectacular debut, Yang has blossomed into an “astonishing artist” (Neue Zürcher Zeitung), and she continues to appear with orchestras around the world. She has performed with the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, Houston Symphony, and BBC Philharmonic (among many others), working with such distinguished conductors as Edo de Waart, Lorin Maazel, James Conlon, Leonard Slatkin, David Robertson, Bramwell Tovey, and Jaap van Zweden. In recital, Yang has taken the stage at New York’s Lincoln Center and Metropolitan Museum; the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC; Chicago’s Symphony Hall; and Zurich’s Tonhalle.

During the 2013-14 season, Yang completes her Rachmaninoff cycle with de Waart and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, makes her debut with the Royal Flemish Philharmonic under de Waart in Belgium, performs as concerto soloist in Brazil, and returns to symphony orchestras including those of Fort Worth, Houston, Nashville, Melbourne, Seoul, and Vancouver. She plays solo recitals in Washington, DC, Houston, and Seattle, and appears at the Kennedy Center with violinist Augustin Hadelich and guitarist Pablo Sáinz-Villegas in the multimedia “Tango, Song, and Dance” project. Other chamber collaborations include concerts with the Alexander String Quartet and Modigliani Quartet, duo recitals with Hadelich in Dallas and Los Angeles, and a residency at the Hong Kong International Chamber Music Festival. Her busy summer includes solo, chamber, and concerto performances at the Aspen, Bravo! Vail, Sun Valley, Rockport, and La Jolla festivals. Spring 2014 brings the release of Wild Dreams, Yang’s second solo disc for Avie Records, with music by Bartók, Hindemith, Schumann, and Rachmaninoff, and she is featured on an Alexander String Quartet recording of the Brahms and Schumann Piano Quintets.

Yang made her celebrated New York Philharmonic debut with Maazel at Avery Fisher Hall in November 2006 and performed on the orchestra’s tour of Asia, making a triumphant return to her hometown of Seoul, South Korea. Subsequent appearances with the Philharmonic included the opening night of the Leonard Bernstein Festival in September 2008, at the special request of Maazel in his final season as Music Director. The New York Times called Yang’s performance in Bernstein’s Age of Anxiety a “knock-out.”

In November 2011, Yang released a solo album for Avie Records, Collage, featuring works by Scarlatti, Liebermann, Debussy, Currier, and Schumann. Gramophone praised her “imaginative programming” and “beautifully atmospheric playing,” while American Record Guide called Collage “an outstanding first recording” and a “display of her wide-ranging talent.”

Born in Seoul, South Korea, Yang received her first piano lesson from her aunt at the age of four. She quickly took to the instrument, which she received as a birthday present, and over the next few years won several national piano competitions in her native country. By the age of ten, she had entered the School of Music at the Korea National University of Arts, and went on to make a number of concerto and recital appearances in Seoul and Daejeon. In 1997, Yang moved to the United States to begin studies at the pre-college division of the Juilliard School in New York with Dr. Yoheved Kaplinsky. During her first year at Juilliard, Yang won the pre-college division Concerto Competition, resulting in a performance of Haydn’s Keyboard Concerto in D with the Juilliard Pre-College Chamber Orchestra. After winning the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Greenfield Student Competition, she performed Prokofiev’s Third Piano Concerto with that orchestra at just twelve years old. She graduated from Juilliard with special honor as the recipient of the school’s 2010 Arthur Rubinstein Prize, and in 2011 she won its 30th Annual William A. Petschek Piano Recital Award.

Yang appears in the film In the Heart of Music, a documentary about the 2005 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, and she is a frequent guest on American Public Media’s nationally syndicated radio program Performance Today. A Steinway artist, she currently lives in New York City.

Nicholas McGegan Returns to Pasadena Symphony with Brahms Symphony No. 2 & Poulenc’s Double Piano Concerto

Pasadena, CA – Ring in the New Year with Principal Guest Conductor Nicholas McGegan as he masterfully explores the musical genius of Brahms Symphony No. 2 and enjoy mother-daughter pianists’ Mihyang and Esther Keel as they perform Poulenc’s jazzy and exotic Concerto for Two Pianos on Saturday, January 17, 2014 at 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m. at Ambassador Auditorium.

The Los Angeles Times celebrated McGegan to be “in fact the sunniest conductor in classical music!” and the Crescenta Valley Weekly said “if performances under McGegan are any indication, the Pasadena Symphony seems to be on the cusp of a golden age.” The return of the jovial McGegan spotlights the unique partnership with the expert master of Baroque and Classical interpretations as he applies his historical performance practice and deeply personal interpretation of Brahms’ Symphony No. 2 – a first for this two-time Grammy nominee.  The cheery and almost pastoral mood of the symphony often invites comparisons with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 (which McGegan will lead in his March 2015 performances). Having the burden of writing his first symphony lifted, Brahms playfully wrote to his publisher that his 2nd “is so melancholy that you will not be able to bear it. I have never written anything so sad, and the score must come out in mourning.” Also on the program is Peter Maxwell Davie’s An Orkney Wedding with Sunrise, an enduringly popular work depicting a riotous celebration featuring a bagpipe soloist dressed in traditional Scottish regalia. The piece was commissioned by the Boston Symphony Orchestra and was premiered in 1985 under the baton of John Williams.

Mother and daughter team, Esther and Mihyang Keel delve into the drama and flair of Poulenc’s Concerto for Two Pianos. Inspired by Mozart, Liszt and Ravel, the work marked the beginning of a “great period” of early 20th century classical music.  Pianist Ether Keel has been praised as “an artist of utmost taste, proportion and charm” and has captivated audiences around the world since making her debut with Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the age of thirteen. Her mother, Mihyang Keel has delighted audiences for over 30 years with performances with Korea Chamber Symphony, the La Mirada Symphony Orchestra and has made various television appearances on both MBC TV and KBS TV.

Nicholas McGegan is a pioneer in exporting historical period practices to conventional symphonic forces. His discography includes more than 100 recordings, including the Gramophone-winning, GRAMMY® nominated world premiere of Handel’s Susanna. He is also credited with the first performance in modern times of Handel’s Gloria. As long-standing music director of the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Philharmonia Chorale, McGegan established the leading period performance ensemble in the United States.

Performances are accompanied by a popular pre-concert discussion that gives the audience insights into the music and musicians one-hour before curtain. Audiences are invited to luxuriate in the lively Sierra Auto Symphony Lounge, yet another addition to the delightful and elegant concert experience the Pasadena Symphony offers. Located in the beautiful outdoor plaza at the Ambassador Auditorium, audiences can enjoy a deliciously prepared menu specially created for the evening by Claud and Co, fine wines, and sparkling conversation before the concert and during intermission.

The Ambassador Auditorium is located at 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA. Ticket prices start at $35 and may be purchased online at www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org or by calling (626) 793-7172.

IF YOU GO:

  • What: The Pasadena Symphony presents McGegan’s Dvorak
  • Special Guests: Nicholas McGegan (principal guest conductor), Mihyang and Esther Keels (pianos)
  • When: Saturday, January 17 at 2:00 p.m. & 8:00 p.m.
  • Where: Ambassador Auditorium | 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105
  • Cost: Tickets start at $35.00
  • Parking:  Valet parking with wheelchair access is available on Green Street for $15. Handicap and general parking is available next to the Auditorium at the covered parking structure for $10. Additional handicap parking is also located at the above-ground parking lot adjacent to the Auditorium (entrance on St. John Ave.) for $10. Parking purchased onsite is cash only.
  • Symphony Lounge: Located on the plaza at Ambassador Auditorium. Open before the

concert and during intermission.

  • Pre-Concert Discussion: Pre-concert discussion with Nicholas McGegan begins one hour before curtain and is available to all ticket holders.

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ABOUT THE ARTISTS

About Nicholas McGegan

“If the performances under Nic McGegan are any indication, the Pasadena Symphony seems to be on the cusp of a golden age. Long may it last.” praised Ted Ayala of the Crescenta Valley Weekly of Principal Guest Conductor of the Pasadena Symphony. As he embarks on his fourth decade on the podium, Nicholas McGegan — long hailed as “one of the finest baroque conductors of his generation” (London Independent) and “an expert in 18th-century style” (The New Yorker) — is increasingly recognized for his probing and revelatory explorations of music of all periods.

Through 27 years as its music director, McGegan has established the San Francisco-based Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Philharmonia Chorale as one of the world’s leading period-performance ensembles, with notable appearances at Carnegie Hall, the London Proms, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, and the International Handel Festival, Göttingen where he was artistic director from 1991 to 2011. Throughout his career, McGegan has defined an approach to period style that sets the current standard: serious and intelligent, but never dogmatic. More recently, Philharmonia Baroque is branching out under his leadership. Calling the group’s recent recording of the Brahms Serenades “a truly treasurable disc,” James R. Oestreich in The New York Times made special note of the performance’s “energy and spirit.”

McGegan’s ability to engage players and audiences alike has made him a pioneer in broadening the reach of historically informed practice beyond the world of period ensembles to conventional symphonic forces. His guest-conducting appearances with major orchestras — including the New York, Los Angeles, and Hong Kong Philharmonics; the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Toronto and Sydney Symphonies; the Cleveland and the Philadelphia Orchestras; and the Northern Sinfonia and Scottish Chamber Orchestra — often feature Baroque repertoire alongside Classical, Romantic, 20th-century and even brand-new works: Mendelssohn, Sibelius, Britten, Bach and Handel with the Utah Symphony; Poulenc and Mozart with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Mahler and Mozart with the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra; and the premiere, in 2012, of Stephen Hough’s Missa Mirabilis with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, paired with Haydn, Brahms and Mendelssohn.

Active in opera as well as the concert hall, McGegan was principal conductor of Sweden’s perfectly preserved 18th-century theater Drottingholm from 1993 to 1996. He has also been a frequent guest conductor with opera companies including Covent Garden, San Francisco, Santa Fe and Washington.

His discography of more than 100 releases includes the world premiere recording of Handel’s Susanna, which garnered both a Gramophone Award and a GRAMMY® nomination, and recent issues of that composer’s Solomon, Samson and Acis and Galatea (the little-known version adapted by Felix Mendelssohn). He is also credited with the first performance in modern times of Handel’s masterly but mislaidGloria. Under its own label, Philharmonia Baroque Productions (PBP), in addition to the Brahms recording Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra has recently released five acclaimed archival recordings: Berlioz’s Les Nuits d’été and selected Handel arias with the late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson; Haydn Symphonies No. 88, 101 and 104, nominated for a GRAMMY® Award; Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and other concerti with Elizabeth Blumenstock as violin soloist; Handel’s Atalanta with soprano Dominique Labelle in the title role; and Brahms’ beloved Serenades.

Mr. McGegan is committed to the next generation of musicians, frequently conducting and coaching students in residencies and engagements at Yale University, the Juilliard School, Harvard University, the Colburn School, Aspen Music Festival and School, and the Music Academy of the West.

Born in England, Nicholas McGegan was educated at Cambridge and Oxford and taught at the Royal College of Music, London. He was made an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for 2010 “for services to music overseas.” His awards also include the Halle Handel Prize; an honorary professorship at Georg-August University, Göttingen; the Order of Merit of the State of Lower Saxony (Germany); the Medal of Honour of the City of Göttingen, and an official Nicholas McGegan Day, declared by the Mayor of San Francisco in recognition of two decades of distinguished work with Philharmonia Baroque.

About Mihyang Keel

Mihyang Keel, born in Seoul Korea, earned her bachelor degree from Seoul National University where she received “The University President Award”, which led to an invitation among all the graduates of 1977 to perform at the Blue House for the President of South Korea.  Upon graduation, Mrs. Keel moved to the United States and earned her master of music degree from the University of Southern California.  She received the “Pi Kappa Lambda Award” from USC. Throughout her career, she has studied with Professor Nakho Paik, Daniel Pollack and Kisun Yun. She was a winner of the National Young Artists Competition, which led to numerous solo recitals in both Korea and the United States.  She has appeared as soloist performing concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Rachmaninoff, Saint-Saens, Prokofiev, and Tchaikovsky with various orchestras such as the Korea Chamber Symphony, Nasung Symphony Orchestra, La Mirada Symphony Orchestra, Chapman Symphony Orchestra, and the Peninsula Symphony, among others.  She has made various television appearances on both MBC TV and KBS TV.

Presently, Mrs. Keel is a member of the National Music Honor Society, Music Teacher’s Association of California, and the Music Teacher’s National Association.  For the past thirty-five years, she has been the pianist and organist for the Galilee Choir of Young Nak Presbyterian Church of Los Angeles.  She has also enjoyed her career as a teacher and has been teaching in her Torrance studio for the past thirty-seven years.  Her students have been prize winners in numerous competitions such as the Edith Knox Concerto Competition, Marina Del Rey-Westchester Symphony Young Artist Competition, Torrance Symphony Concerto Competition, Bronislaw Kaper Award Competition, Young Musicians Foundation Concerto Competition, and the Glendale Piano Competition, among others. Her students have also been admitted to prestigious colleges such as Juilliard, Eastman, Manhattan School of Music, Eastman School of Music, Peabody, USC, UCLA, and the San Francisco Conservatory.

About Esther Keel

Praised as “an artist of utmost taste, proportion and charm” (The Cleveland Plain Dealer), American pianist Esther Keel has captivated audiences around the world since making her debut with Esa-Pekka Salonen  and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the age of thirteen.  Since then, she has concertized throughout the United States and Canada, as well as in Germany, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Ireland, Korea, and Russia.

Ms. Keel has performed with over twenty orchestras across the United States including the Jacksonville Symphony, Pasadena Symphony, Korean American Symphony, The Juilliard Orchestra, Merrick Symphony, Mozart Festival Orchestra, Peninsula Symphony, Colburn Orchestra, and the San Francisco State Symphony, among others.  In addition to Esa-Pekka Salonen, she has worked with notable conductors such as Otto-Werner Mueller, Rossen Milanov, Fabio Mechetti, and Bundit Ungrangsee.

As a soloist, Ms. Keel has appeared in prestigious concert halls including Kennedy Center in Washington D.C, Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in New York, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and abroad at the Kurhaus Bad Aussee in Austria, Teatro Guglielmi in Italy, and the Poland Embassy in Moscow.  She has been featured in the Southampton Rising Stars Concert Series, the Los Angeles Da Camera Society at the historic Doheny Mansion, San Francisco’s Annual Chopin Concert Series, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic Rising Stars Recital Series. Ms. Keel’s numerous competition honors include top prizes in the Moscow International Chopin Competition, Washington International Piano Competition, National Federation of Music Clubs Competition, Ostra International Piano Competition in Italy, Juilliard Concerto Competition, and the American Prize at the Cleveland International Piano Competition.

As an avid chamber musician, Ms. Keel has performed in venues such as Alice Tully Hall, Peter Jay Sharp Theatre, Wilshire Ebell Theatre, LACMA, and the California Club.  She has worked with musicians including Fred Sherry, Jonathan Feldman, Joseph Kalichstein, Seymour Lipkin, and Vivian Weilerstein.  She has performed in the Musica L’Amore Chamber Music Series, Alice Tully’s Wednesdays at One Series, and the Young Musicians Foundation Chamber Music Series, which was broadcast live on the classical music station KUSC 91.5.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Ms. Keel began playing the piano at the age of three with her concert pianist mother, Mihyang Keel.  She received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the Juilliard School.  In May of 2011, Ms. Keel graduated with an Artist Diploma from the Colburn Conservatory in Los Angeles.  In addition to her studies, she has served as an instructor in the college division of the Juilliard School, as well as at the Colburn School of Performing Arts.  She currently maintains a small private studio in both Los Angeles and the South Bay.  Her former teachers have included John Perry, Yoheved Kaplinsky, Yong Hi Moon, and Robert McDonald.

About the Pasadena Symphony and POPS

Recent Acclaim for the Pasadena Symphony and POPS
“…the new era at the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra has begun…” Los Angeles Times.

“The Pasadena Symphony signals a new direction…teeming with vitality…dripping with opulent, sexy emotion.” Los Angeles Times. 

“…full of pulsating energy from first note to last… the strings were lushly resonant, the wind principals were at the top of their games, and the brass rang out with gleaming vigor.” –Pasadena Star News.

Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians.  With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industry, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.

The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the luxuriant Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. Internationally recognized, Grammy-nominated conductor, David Lockington, serves as the Pasadena Symphony Association’s Music Director, with performance-practice specialist Nicholas McGegan serving as Principal Guest Conductor.  The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, is the  Principal Pops Conductor, who succeeded  Marvin Hamlisch in the newly created Marvin Hamlisch Chair.

A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of five performing ensembles, with over 250 gifted 4th-12th grade students from more than 50 schools all over the Southern California region.  The PYSO Symphony often performs on the popular television show GLEE.

The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.