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2021-2022 Season

January 8, 2022: Young composer premieres first symphony with Santa Rosa Symphony

by Diane Peterson, The Press Democrat, January 8, 2022

Gabriella Smith, a native of Berkeley who recently moved to Seattle, started piano lessons as a young child, then took up the violin at age 8.

“I wasn’t very good at either,” she said. “When I was 8, I started writing, and when I was 11, I started showing compositions to my piano teacher. After that ... I became better and better in writing music and worse and worse in piano.”

Now 30, Smith already is considered one of the brightest stars in the firmament of up-and-coming classical music composers. She has been commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic to write an organ concerto, scheduled to premiere on Feb. 22 at Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles.

And this weekend, she’ll premiere her 30-minute symphony, “One,” with the Santa Rosa Symphony at the Green Music Center in Rohnert Park.


November 7, 2021: Santa Rosa Symphony gala honors president, CEO

by Diane Peterson, The Press Democrat, November 7, 2021

Friday night was a big, big night for Santa Rosa Symphony President and CEO Alan Silow at the Green Music Center. Silow was feted for his 70th birthday and his 20th year as the leading advocate and COVID-era savior of the symphony, regarded as one of the most vital and successful regional orchestras in the country.

After taking a year off because of the pandemic, the Santa Rosa Symphony pulled out all the stops for its 2021 gala, welcoming guests with a champagne reception at the Prelude Restaurant and a sit-down dinner in the Person lobby.

In between the bubbly and the grand meal, pianist Kathleen Tagg and clarinetist David Krakauer performed an intimate recital in Weill Hall. Krakauer is appearing with the symphony this weekend.

Read full article and see the gallery of photos on The Press Democrat. 

October 1, 2021: Santa Rosa Symphony opens season with Mozart

by Diane Peterson, The Press Democrat, October 1, 2021

Violinist Julian Rhee, a 21-year-old senior at the New England Conservatory, spent most of the pandemic with his family in Wisconsin, doing some soul searching and back-to-basics work on his instrument. 

. . . Rhee originally was scheduled to perform the Mozart concerto during the finale of the Santa Rosa Symphony’s 2020-2021 season. Instead, he’ll kick off the 2021-2022 season with the beloved concerto during three concerts with the symphony this weekend — with live audiences for the first time since February 2020 — at the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall. Rounding out the program will be Elgar’s “Enigma Variations,” Libby Larsen’s “Deep Summer Music” and Gabriella Smith’s “Rush.”

Read more at The Press Democrat. 

August 26, 2021: Going big this season

by Diane Peterson, The Press Democrat, August 26, 2021

Santa Rosa Symphony plans on making up for lost time after a creative but stunted year thanks to pandemic

Santa Rosa Symphony Music Director FrancescoLecce-Chong is thrilled to welcome audiences back to the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall for the 2021-2022 season, and not just because their energy lifts the orchestra to new heights. After pulling off a season of virtual concerts with smaller orchestras in 2020-2021, Lecce-Chong is excited to be able to present an ambitious array of music that goes above and beyond what the orchestra would normally present in one season.

Among other things, he is looking forward to sharing four major world premieres and launching a second multi-year project, Rachmaninoff and the Hollywood Sound, which brings together some of the composer’s larger works with smaller works by influential Hollywood composers of the past and present. The idea is to illustrate their shared lush, lyrical sound.

Read on

August 26, 2021: Santa Rosa Pops goes live for 2021-2022

by Kathleen Coates, The Press Democrat, August 26, 2021

Santa Rosa Symphony Pops Series conductor Michael Berkowitz and his performers are rarin’ to go as the 2021-2022 season gets underway this fall. . . .
“We’re just all really anxious and excited to get back and play and make music for everyone,” he said. “The musicians are all vaccinated and they are working hard to make sure everything comes off.”
Read on.

July 9, 2021: Classical Reunion: The Santa Rosa Symphony is poised to return to the Green Music Center for a full season

by Diane Peterson, The Press Democrat, July 9, 2021

The Santa Rosa Symphony will return to the Green Music Center’s Weill Hall at Sonoma State University — with a full orchestra onstage and a live audience in the seats — for a complete 2021-2022 season of seven concert sets, plus an extra concert in June 2022 and two new subscription packages.
“I’m thrilled to welcome audiences back to the Green Music Center for the unparalleled experience of live orchestra music,” said Music Director Francesco Lecce-Chong. “After a seasonal of virtual performances with a smaller orchestra, an ambitious lineup of grand orchestral classics by Shostakovich, Rachmaninoff, Elgar and Respighi will bring our full orchestra back to the stage.”
Read on.

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