I Hear a Tennessee Symphony
Winter tends to be a harsh season with snow, cold winds and frigid temperatures. Let Tennessee’s symphony orchestras sprinkled throughout the state offer magical soundscapes this season to ease your mind about the bitter chill. After visiting these symphony halls, you may regard winter as a magical, musical season.EAST
The Chattanooga Symphony had its first concert Nov. 5, 1933. The symphony merged with the Chattanooga Opera in 1985, becoming the first and only symphonic and opera organization of its kind in the United States. Since then, the 2013-2014 Season celebrates 81 years of providing classical and orchestral music to the Chattanooga community.
Fill your calendar with beautiful classical music like “All Brahms” Jan. 30 which will feature his beautiful Symphony No. 3, influenced by Schumann, Wagner, and Beethoven. Kayoko Dan will conduct a voyage of space exploration with works by Stravinsky, Beethoven, Bach, and Holst Feb. 9. The performance will also feature Carey Shinbaum as guest host and Bethany Thorton, the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera Youth Orchestras violin competition winner. “Big Band Fever” Feb. 14-15 will feature the CSO’s Big Band as it performs music from the Swing Era. Enjoy one of Mozart’s most admired works Feb. 23 as the symphony performs his Symphony No. 40 which has emotional and tragic tones.
Nashville is known as Music City and what better way to listen to Bach, Mozart, jazz and, yes, even Led Zeppelin than by the Nashville Symphony at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center, designed after the great concert halls of Europe. The hall has acoustical clarity, reverberation and warmth for the sound of natural instruments. It also houses a custom-built organ with 47 voices, 64 ranks, and 3,568 pipes with three 32-foot stops for an impressive, lovely range.
Snag last-minute tickets to hear Mary Chapin Carpenter with the Nashville Symphony Jan. 29 as she performs songs from her debut orchestral record, “Songs From The Movie.” The sold-out performance of Nashville Symphony’s repertoire of “The Music of Led Zeppelin” are sure to be a hit among rock ‘n’ roll fans Jan. 30. Creator Brent Havens will guest conduct the orchestra as songs like “Stairway to Heaven,” “Heartbreaker,” and “Immigrant Song” will be performed riff for riff. Jonny Lang, a soulful singer who found success with his debut album “Lie to Me,” will perform songs from his brand-new album “Fight for My Soul” which showcase his vocal melodies, guitar playing and textured arrangements Feb. 9 without the orchestra. Finally, enjoy a musical tribute to The Beatles as the four musicians in Classical Mystery Tour look and sound just like John, Paul, Ringo and George Feb. 20-22.
When new settlers came to Memphis, amateur musicians and their patrons started musical groups like The Casino Club, the Philharmonic Society, and the Beethoven Club. To honor these musical pioneers, the Memphis Sinfonietta was formed by 21 musicians with their first concert in January 1953. The Sinfonietta turned into the Memphis Symphony Orchestra and now is an integral part of the cultural and educational life of Memphis and its residents.
Get in touch with your inner child as the classic “Peter and the Wolf” is performed by the orchestra. The performance is dedicated to children and will also include Britten’s “Simple Symphony” and Ravel’s “Mother Goose” Suite Feb. 7. Hear a concert of diva showstoppers during “Wicked Divas” Feb. 15 when the orchestra will perform selections from “Gypsy,” “Ragtime,” “Titanic,” “Carmen,” and the Tony-Award winning musical, “Wicked.” Mei-Ann Chen will conduct the orchestra’s performance of Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 and Brahms’ “A German Requiem” Feb. 22-23.
Other symphony orchestras throughout Tennessee include Symphony of the Mountains in Kingsport; The University of Tennessee Symphony, Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, The Jackson Symphony Orchestra, and the East Tennessee Symphony Orchestra in Chattanooga. With so many concerts and symphony halls to visit, Tennessee makes winter truly musical.
Where is your favorite Tennessee symphony venue? Let me know in the comments below!