Phoenix: Phoenix Symphony Orchestra

The Phoenix Symphony Announces 2009 Season

Opening Night Wagner Spectacular with Soprano Jane Eaglen

Symphony Presents Inaugural World Music Festival Sponsored by the Target Corporation

Superstar Soloists include Lang Lang and Joshua Bell

Composer Spotlight highlights Haydn, Stravinsky and Higdon

Pops highlights include performances by Doc Severinsen,

Tribute to Rodgers and Hammerstein and the Music of 007: James Bond

Michael Christie leads Holiday Concert Season with Baroque Christmas and Messiah Performed Across the Valley

Symphony Presents Return Engagement of Popular “Bugs Bunny on Broadway” Production


Pops Concert No. 4
January 30 – Friday evening at 8:00 p.m.
January 31 – Saturday evening at 8:00 p.m.
February 1 – Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m.
Symphony Hall

The Phoenix Symphony
Doc Severinsen, conductor
Gil Gutierrez, classical guitar
Pedro Cartas, violin

With his signature trumpet, Doc Severinsen returns with his new show, El Ritmo de la Vida (The Rhythm of Life). This spectacular concert features Spanish music with a jazz flair, gorgeous American and Latin ballads and stunning music from the big screen

Music Director Michael Christie and The Phoenix Symphony announce an outstanding season full of talented artists and diverse concert offerings for all music lovers in the upcoming 2008-09 Season.

Michael Christie, the Virginia G. Piper Music Director, will lead sixteen weeks of concerts, appearing in all of the orchestra's major concert series at Symphony Hall including the Classics, Pops, and Family series.

Mr. Christie will also conduct the season's Opening Night Spectacular on Saturday, September 6, with a special concert featuring the preeminent Wagnerian soprano of today, Jane Eaglen. The concert showcases celebrated works of Wagner including the Overture to Tannhäuser and the "Rhine Journey" from Götterdämmerung.

World Music Festival

ome of the world's finest musicians will converge on Phoenix for the inaugural Target World Music Festival in September 2008. The opening two weeks of The Phoenix Symphony's 2008-2009 Season are devoted to exploring a variety of musical traditions from around the globe.

Celebrated artists including the Kronos Quartet, Chinese pipa virtuoso Wu Man, Romashka Gypsy Folk Troupe, Celtic fiddler Natalie MacMaster, vocalist Tania Libertad and the Pan-Polynesian group HAPA will perform at venues across the Valley during the two-week celebration of world music. The inaugural Target World Music Festival is made possible with generous support from the Target Corporation.

Classics Series

Two of classical music's most celebrated stars will perform in concerts with The Phoenix Symphony during the 2008-09 Season. Superstar violinist Joshua Bell and the phenomenal Chinese pianist, Lang Lang, will each appear for one concert only.

Additional guest artists for the 2008-09 Season include pianists Fabio Bidini and Louis Lortie; violinists Jamie Laredo and Ning Kam; Bluegrass string trio Time for Three; organist Paul Jacobs; puppeteer Basil Twist; percussionist Colin Currie; vocalists Celena Shafer, Philip Cutlip, Gregory Kunde, Jessica Rivera, Stephen Powell and more. Guest conductors include Delta David Gier, Eri Klas and Jamie Laredo.

During the 2008-09 Season, The Phoenix Symphony will highlight the works of Franz Joseph Haydn, Igor Stravinsky and Jennifer Higdon as part of the orchestra's Composer Spotlight initiative. Michael Christie and the orchestra will showcase and explore the works of these three composers alongside new works and familiar favorites for the classics season.

Additional repertoire highlights of the upcoming season include Haydn's Creation, Ravel's orchestration of Pictures at an Exhibition, Respighi's Pines of Rome, Mahler's Symphony No. 4, Stravinsky's Petrushka and Firebird, Orff's Carmina Burana, Strauss's Ein Heldenleben and much more.


The Phoenix Symphony's Pops series features favorite melodies, best-loved songs and trips throughout the musical world. Eight weekends of the best guest artists and popular themes feature Celtic fiddler Natalie MacMaster in concert, a musical trip to the 1950s with Sha Na Na, the return of Phoenix favorite Doc Severinsen with his show "El Ritmo de la Vida," a salute to the music of Rodgers and Hammerstein and the music James Bond films with "007: Bond and Beyond." In addition, the ever-popular Christmas Pops will return for the holiday season, conducted by Resident Conductor Lawrence Golan. Special guests also include Pops conductors Jack Everly and Michael Krajewski.

Favorites Across the Valley

The Phoenix Symphony presents three series of concerts in locations across the Valley. Each of these series features favorite works that explore places and countries around the globe. With "All-American" classics, "A Night in Vienna," "España," and "Arabian Nights," this series brings the beautiful and exotic sounds of the world directly to your neighborhood.

Concerts will take place at the Mesa Arts Center, Pinnacle Presbyterian Church, and in locations throughout Scottsdale. (Note: Due to the renovation of Scottsdale Center for the Arts, the Scottsdale Favorite Series will be held in various locations around Scottsdale.

The Phoenix Symphony will return to Scottsdale Center for the Arts upon completion of the renovation.) In response to the outpouring of requests in the East Valley, the Applause Series at the Mesa Arts Center has also been moved from Friday evenings to Sunday afternoons.

Holiday Season

The holiday season will once again include several weeks of festive concerts in 2008. Michael Christie will lead performances of Handel's Messiah including the complete oratorio, highlights from the work, and the Third Annual Community Sing-a-Long at Bethany Bible Church in Phoenix. The Phoenix Symphony Baroque Ensemble will also perform masterpieces from Vivaldi and Bach as part of Baroque Christmas.

Performances of both Messiah and Baroque Christmas take place in churches across the Valley and at the Mesa Arts Center in December 2008. Resident Conductor Lawrence Golan will also lead a weekend of Christmas Pops including classic carols, a holiday sing-along and favorite holiday tunes.

Bugs Bunny on Broadway

The Phoenix Symphony is proud to announce the return of the tremendously popular concert, "Bugs Bunny on Broadway," January 3 and 4, 2009. Experience your favorite "Wasically Wabbit" and his friends Elmer Fudd, Daffy Duck, Wile E. Coyote, and Porky Pig in full movie palace glory. Watch classic Warner Bros. Studio cartoons on the big screen – including The Rabbit of Seville and What's Opera Doc? – while The Phoenix Symphony plays Carl Stalling's original Looney Toons scores live, inspired by the classics of Rossini, Wagner, Strauss and many others. The concerts promise to be fun for the whole family.

Family Series

Due to its overwhelming popularity, the Family Series will expand to six concerts during the 2008-09 season providing families with more opportunities to enjoy and to learn about symphonic music. Each afternoon performance is especially themed for children with pre-concert activities including the popular Instrument Petting Zoo.

Performances in this series feature guest artists such as Celtic fiddler Natalie MacMaster, trumpet virtuoso and conductor Doc Severinsen, and the Magic Circle Mime Company. Guest conductors also include Delta David Gier and Michael Krajewski.

In addition, the final concert of the series entitled "Superheros!" features music of beloved caped crusaders and crime fighters everywhere. The Symphony is proud to announce the continuation of the Target Corporation's generosity in supporting the Family Series. With their support, patrons receive one free child subscription with each adult series subscription purchased.

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About Phoenix Symphony Orchestra Music Director Michael Christie

Michael Christie begins his third season as the Virginia G. Piper Music Director of The Phoenix Symphony with the 2007-08 season. He also serves as Music Director of the Colorado Music Festival and of the Brooklyn Philharmonic. He has appeared with orchestras across the United States, Europe, and Canada, as well as with the Finnish National Opera, Queensland Opera, and Zürich Opera.

In 1995, Mr. Christie was awarded a special prize at the First International Sibelius Conductor's Competition. Following the competition, he became an apprentice conductor with the Chicago Symphony. Michael Christie graduated from the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music with a bachelor's degree in trumpet performance. His conducting teachers have included Daniel Barenboim, Robert Spano, Eiji Oue and Peter Jaffe.

About The Phoenix Symphony

Celebrating its 60th Anniversary Season, The Phoenix Symphony has been proudly serving the citizens of the Phoenix metropolitan area and Arizona since 1947. What began as an occasional group of musicians performing a handful of concerts each year (in a city of fewer than 100,000 people) today serves more than 300,000 people annually, with 275 concerts and presentations throughout the greater Phoenix area and beyond.

Under the artistic leadership of Michael Christie as the Virginia G. Piper Music Director and administrative leadership of President Maryellen H. Gleason, the orchestra is overseen by the non-profit Phoenix Symphony Association under Board Chairman Ed Wolf.

The 76-member Phoenix Symphony presents an annual season from September through the beginning of June, featuring full-length Classical and Pops concerts at Sym?phony Hall in downtown Phoenix, along with a variety of symphonic and community performances in Mesa, Prescott, Scottsdale and throughout central Arizona. The Symphony performs for more than 50,000 students and children, helping to introduce music to new generations through a variety of education and youth-engagement programs.

The Phoenix Symphony's 2007-08 Media Sponsors are
The Arizona Republic and KAET - Channel 8.

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