Elgin Symphony Orchestra to perform Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4 at concerts April 1-2
The Elgin Symphony Orchestra will present Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4 on Saturday and Sunday, April 1-2.
Guest conductor Alex Amsel, a finalist in the ESO's music director search, will lead the concerts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday at the Hemmens Cultural Center, 45 Symphony Way in Elgin. The program will include Saint-Saëns' Violin Concerto No. 3, featuring violinist Blake Pouliot, and Carlos Simon's "Fate Now Conquers."
Pouliot made his orchestra debut at age 11 and since has performed with the orchestras in North and South America and Europe.
He released his debut album on Analekta Records in 2019 to critical acclaim including a five-star rating from BBC Music Magazine as well as a 2019 Juno Award nomination for Best Classical Album.
Amsel, of Argentinian and Mexican heritage, has established himself as a conductor equally at home with orchestral and operatic repertoire, as well as a music educator for students of all ages. He is currently resident conductor with the Houston Grand Opera and spent three seasons as assistant conductor with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra.
Tickets are $20-$65 and are available on the ESO's website, www.ElginSymphony.org, and, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, by calling its box office at (847) 888-4000.
Student tickets are $10, and youth age 17 and under are free with an accompanying adult.
"Music of Star Wars"
If you are in the mood for an otherworldly musical experience, join the Elgin Symphony Orchestra and guest conductor Enrico Lopez-Yañez for "The Music of Star Wars."
This concert promises music you know from the acclaimed saga including "A New Hope," "The Phantom Menace," "The Force Awakens," "Rogue One" and more. The concert starts at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 31, at the Hemmens Cultural Center. Tickets are $20-$55, and students tickets are $10.
The Elgin Symphony Orchestra has a long history of highlighting the works of world-renowned conductors, composers, and musicians, and of promoting the advancement of women in the arts. Founded in 1950 as a community orchestra, the ESO became a professional ensemble in 1985, in good part due to the leadership of the late Margaret Hillis, who was music director at the ESO from 1971-1985. Hillis was one of the first females to break through the male-dominated world of conducting and is credited with being the impetus behind the creation of the Elgin Symphony Orchestra Association, the formation of the ESO's volunteer core -- the Elgin Symphony League, and the start of the ESO's commitment to music education and enrichment for youth.
Today, the ESO continues to draw its creativity and artistry from the Elgin area and gives back to the community through its Adopt-a-School program that provides supplemental music education and in-school performances to local schools; Musicians Care program that brings live music performances to local hospitals, hospices and retirement homes; informational Listeners Club events and other free programs at public libraries; In Harmony Program in places of worship; Ainsworth Concerts for Youth; free tickets for youth under 18; open rehearsals; and free community concerts throughout the region.
The ESO has been named Orchestra of the Year four times by the Illinois Council of Orchestras (1988, 1999, 2005 and 2016).
The ESO is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Season sponsors include Willow Springs Charitable Fund, Otto Engineering, Seigle Foundation, The Pepper Family Foundation, John B. Sanfilippo & Son, Inc., and the S.E. (Stu) Ainsworth Family. Additional operating support is provided, in part, by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency. To learn more or to support the ESO, visit www.elginsymphony.org.