SAVANNAH, GA – Sept. 5, 2018 – The Savannah Philharmonic will kick off its highly-anticipated 2018-19, Tenth Anniversary Season, with “10 Years in the Making: Fire & Spirit,” at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 22 at the Lucas Theatre for the Arts, 32 Abercorn St., in downtown Savannah. A pre-concert talk, designed to enhance concert goers’ music experience, will be presented by John Canarina and Savannah Friends of Music at 6:30 p.m. The presenting sponsor for opening night is Charles C. Taylor & Samir Nikocevic Charitable Foundation. Other sponsors include; The Olde Pink House, Garibaldis, Synovus, and Wet Willie’s.
The Savannah Philharmonic Artistic Director and Conductor Peter Shannon will open the season with a special homage to the past. Audiences will be swept away on a breathtaking journey through the Philharmonic’s storied history, as the musicians reprise pieces from their inaugural season including Ludwig van Beethoven’s Fantasia for Piano, Op. 80 “Choral Fantasy” and concluding with Beethoven’s fiery Fifth Symphony. The concert will feature pianist Quynh Shannon, along with members of the Savannah Philharmonic Chorus. A marvelous new work, aptly entitled TEN, was commissioned just for the occasion by celebrated composer Richard Sortomme, and will be premiered as overture to the opening night extravaganza.
Sortomme graduated from the Julliard School as a concert violinist. His performing career centered on two chamber music groups: For the Love of Music, where he served as founding music director and artist member violinist for ten seasons in concerts at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City and at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C and L’Ensemble, in which he was an artistic member violinist and violinist performing at historic sites throughout the United States, at Alice Tully Hall in NYC and in joint concerts with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. After two decades of a renowned chamber music career, he returned to his foremost love of composing music, which he has devoted himself to, with a steady outpouring of successful concert works, since 1997. Two, of many, outstanding examples of Sortomme’s riveting career as composer are his New York Philharmonic commission for the orchestral version of his Androcles and the Lion, with narrator and 3 actors in Chinese shadow theatre, a winning Young People’s Concert premiered in Avery Fisher, in 2004 and his highly acclaimed 2007 world premiere, Rhapsody for Viola and Orchestra, commissioned by The Cleveland Orchestra. The world premiere of TEN marks the second work of Sortomme’s to have been commissioned by the Savannah Philharmonic, and was inspired by the orchestra’s celebration of its 10th anniversary season.
“I can’t think of a better way to open our historic tenth season than with Beethoven’s epic Fifth Symphony. I find it particularly fulfilling because we just finished our ninth season with Beethoven’s symphony number 9. The Fifth Symphony is dramatic in the extreme, but has moments of serene beauty and pure joy as well. It truly is the symphony that never wants to end, with Beethoven pushing all the parameters to achieve an incredibly exciting finish,” Shannon said. “The concert opens with the world premiere of Richard Sortomme’s TEN, commissioned by the Philharmonic for our opening night. Mr. Sortomme has been commissioned by orchestras like the New York Philharmonic and the Cleveland Orchestra, so I see it as a great honor to perform his work, all the more so when it has been composed just for this concert! I’m delighted that this historic evening opens with the Savannah Philharmonic Chorus on stage with the full orchestra. The ‘old-timers,’ like me, will know that when I first came to Savannah, I started as conductor of the then Savannah Choral Society, and later, along with a dedicated group of community leaders and volunteers, formed the Philharmonic Orchestra. So, we are built upon the chorus, and this concert is a tribute to that history as well. Last but not least, this is an exact replica of my very first Philharmonic concert 10 years ago. And we are better than ever!”
Under the artistic direction of Shannon, the Savannah Philharmonic’s Tenth Anniversary Season will feature orchestral classics, dazzling displays and crowd favorites with performances spanning from this opening concert on Sept. 22, 2018 to the season finale on May 4, 2019.
New for Tenth season, a range of commemorative merchandise including mugs and T-shirts featuring the special tenth anniversary logo will be available for purchase at every event of the season, and from Sept. 21 online via the organization’s new website at savannahphilharmonic.org
The Savannah Philharmonic is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with the mission to inform, instruct, and enrich the community through orchestral and choral performances, and to promote and increase community knowledge and appreciation of the arts.
Tickets to the opening night concert cost $15-$80 each and can be purchased by visiting www.savannahboxoffice.com.
For more information on the Savannah Philharmonic, please visit www.savannahphilharmonic.org, call 912-232-6002 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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