News

Charlotte Symphony opens 2017 with a big noise from Winthrop Dec 20, 2016

This is how it went down, with millionaire patrons and government grants and contract negotiators nowhere in sight.

A timpanist walked into a pizza joint to hang out with a violinist [..] Read More


Mark O'Connor will be Charlotte Symphony's first artist in resdience Dec 13, 2016

Mark O'Connor has let no dust settle on his bow since landing in Charlotte with wife Maggie this summer, but no day has been more newsworthy than Dec. 7.

The O'Connor Band, which he [..] Read More


Imagine Panther Jonathan Stewart playing piano in an ugly Christmas sweater Dec 11, 2016

Just when you thought you'd seen it all out of the Carolina Panthers, the team has released a holiday music video featuring running back Jonathan Stewart winking at the camera and playing the piano [..] Read More


What beer goes with Bach? How you can hear the symphony at a Charlotte brewery this month Nov 22, 2016

Beer may be the beverage of choice for football, basketball and baseball, outdoor festivals, backyard cookouts and rock concerts. But a pint is versatile enough to go with, well, everything.
< [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony travels to heaven, via Austria Nov 18, 2016

Christof Perick, music director of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra before Christopher Warren-Green, once told me, "You cannot forever hide from Bruckner."

Those six words contain two [..] Read More


Guest Soloists, Chorus, and Charlotte Symphony in Walloping Bruckner Te Deum Nov 18, 2016

The cramped look of the Charotte Symphony at the Belk Theater clearly confirmed to me that the music we were about to hear would be similarly dense and weighty, particularly when the Charlotte [..] Read More


The Charlotte Symphony reminds us what America is all about Nov 11, 2016

What is an American?

The child of Jewish immigrants from Lithuania, a boy who grew up above his parents' shop in Brooklyn.
The openly gay son of Pennsylvania patricians, a Pulitzer- [..] Read More


A brisk breeze of Mendelssohn, beatific Elgar – and bagpipes Nov 5, 2016

"Max loved to write music falling apart," music director Christopher Warren-Green told the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra audience Friday night at Belk Theater.

What he didn't say was that [..] Read More


Standing Ovation for Bagpiper in Refined Scottish Concert Nov 4, 2016

Now that Music Director Christopher Warren-Green has survived the honeymoon and is entering his seventh year with the Charlotte Symphony , it is fair to say that the marriage, judging from this [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony’s new President and CEO Mary Deissler is hitting all the right notes Nov 1, 2016

Mary Deissler's career might have turned out differently if she hadn't experienced crippling stage fright as a budding concert pianist.

She might be performing with the Charlotte [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony: Cheap tickets, new gig, and a beer thrown in Oct 26, 2016

The next time you see Christopher James Lees, he may have a beer in his hand. You will almost certainly have a beer in your hand, because Bach and a bock go together.

That's the thinking [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony: A wild night in central Europe Oct 14, 2016

Forgive me if I spend the first half of this review on the last 12 minutes of Friday's Charlotte Symphony concert. I had never heard György Ligeti's "Concert Romanesc" played live. The piece [..] Read More


A Pulitzer-winning passion comes Charlotte's way Oct 6, 2016

You may have doubts about making plans when a Friday the 13th is involved, but Thursday the 13th will be a lucky day: You can hear the local premiere of a Pulitzer Prize-winning choral piece, sung [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony shows the warmer side of Tchaikovsky Sep 30, 2016

Peter Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto, perhaps more than any other work in the classical repertoire, is a warning to critics and musicians to watch what they say. Iosif Kotek, the violinist who [..] Read More


The woman who's turning the Charlotte Symphony upside down Sep 28, 2016

For the last three years, as the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra struggled to keep its annual budget in the black, it motored along at a speed that wouldn't jostle any passengers.
Now Mary [..] Read More


Festival celebrates neighbor diversity Sep 15, 2016

Cultural diversity needs representation.

A free festival on Sept. 24, presented by Charlotte Symphony and Community School of the Arts, encourages the community to welcome new neighbors [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony kills KnightSounds, gives birth to altsounds Aug 11, 2016

After six years, KnightSounds is dead. From the ashes has risen altsounds.

Yes, capital letters are dead, too. This is the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra's most informal series for adults, [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony announces Pops season, assistant conductor Jul 18, 2016

The performance season may be over, but the Charlotte Symphony hasn't been idle. The orchestra, which enters its 85th season this fall, has a new assistant conductor Christopher James Lees, who [..] Read More


Headed to ‘Ghostbusters' or Spielberg's 'BFG'? You're about to hear this Charlotte native Jul 14, 2016

When you need a toot from a ghostly flute
Who ya gonna call? Ben Smolen!
If the BFG wants to dance with glee
Who ya gonna call? Ben Smolen!

Smolen and three flute-playing [..] Read More


UNCSA music director joins Charlotte Symphony as assistant Jun 29, 2016

Christopher James Lees, music director of the UNC School of the Arts Symphony Orchestra, will join the Charlotte Symphony as assistant conductor beginning Sept. 1. He will continue in his roles at [..] Read More


Mark your calendars: 10 must-do events in July Jun 24, 2016

Here are the events you can't miss this July chronologically, so you can hit them all.

They're fun, patriotic, and, as always, include good food & beer. Enjoy the summer and don't [..] Read More


David Bowie gets symphony treatment Jun 16, 2016

With the recent deaths of iconic musicians Prince, Merle Haggard, Motorhead's Lemmy Kilmister, Glenn Frey and David Bowie, 2016 isn't short on tribute concerts. Thursday, the Charlotte Symphony [..] Read More


The 5 types of events that are totally acceptable to attend by yourself Jun 10, 2016

The scenario: You just moved here and don't know a single soul in this city, or all of your plans fell through for the night or your friends are busy and you feel lonely.

The problem: You [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony opens Summer Pops season Jun 6, 2016

On the plus side, glorious light classical music and pop adaptations, delivered by the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra with irrepressible Albert-George Schramm behind the baton. Tickets that remain [..] Read More


Spotlight on Balcony in Orchestral, Operatic, and Theatrical Tribute to Romeo and Juliet May 24, 2016

A distinguished scholar who taught my undergrad Shakespeare course once told us that a precious folio edition of the Bard's plays was on display at one of England's most prestigious libraries, [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony ends its classics season seductively May 19, 2016

When the Charlotte Symphony Chorus was known as the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte, they hooked up on numerous occasions with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra in the most popular piece in the [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony pioneer Jacques Brourman has my thanks May 17, 2016

We pay homage to guys who build and design skyscrapers, but we don't always remember guys who cleared the land and made a place for the shining city of the future.

But today I will. [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony blasts Orff (that’s a good thing) May 13, 2016

Some one-course dinners are complete meals, musically speaking: Gustav Mahler's 75-minute Fifth Symphony, which the Charlotte Symphony played so well in November, leaves us full of ideas in a world [..] Read More


Why Bernadette Peters decided the show will go on in Charlotte, despite HB2 May 6, 2016

Broadway star Bernadette Peters nearly canceled her upcoming appearance in Charlotte over House Bill 2.

Booked for a return engagement Saturday with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, [..] Read More


Musicians are clay in Kenney Potter’s hands May 6, 2016

Kenney Potter runs the Charlotte Symphony Chorus, which he has redesigned in less than a year. (You'll hear it blast through Orff's "Carmina Burana" this week at Belk Theater.)

As of [..] Read More


Violinist Yu a wow with Charlotte Symphony May 2, 2016

To non-English conductors, Ralph Vaughan Williams often looks like trouble. His nine symphonies are the most important set in 400 years of English music. Yet Claudio Abbado, Leonard Bernstein, [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony announces Summer Pops schedule Apr 22, 2016

The Charlotte Symphony kicks off its annual outdoor Summer Pops series at Symphony Park at SouthPark Mall on Sunday, June 5.

Conductor Albert-George Schram will lead the orchestra (and [..] Read More


New top exec for Charlotte Symphony Apr 4, 2016

Mary Deissler will succeed Robert Stickler as president and CEO of the Charlotte Symphony.

The organization made the announcement Friday that Deissler is transitioning from her role as [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony hires new president Apr 1, 2016

Mary Deissler, now president of the Chicago Academy for the Arts, will take over as president and CEO of the Charlotte Symphony June 1, the group announced Friday.

She'll succeed Robert [..] Read More


Charlotte Symphony pays apt homage to Russian greats Mar 18, 2016

BY LAWRENCE TOPPMAN

Masterworks of Russian classical music fit into the span of one long human life. Every great concerto, symphony, opera, ballet, choral or chamber work by Tchaikovsky, [..] Read More


Boyz II Men loves arts education, doing symphony gigs Mar 10, 2016

BY COURTNEY DEVORES

Boyz II Men performs with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra Saturday. One third of the Grammy-winning chart toppers, Shawn Stockman, spoke to the Observer from his [..] Read More


That’s old school: Boyz II Men team with Charlotte Symphony Mar 3, 2016

Embrace the sound of the symphony.

In collaboration with the Charlotte Symphony, Boyz II Men's performance at Belk Theater on March 12 at 8 p.m. is a reminder that a digitized sound [..] Read More


Orchestra shows us Gershwin and Copland’s rich, diverse America Feb 22, 2016

BY LAWRENCE TOPPMAN

Optimism has always been America's selling point to the world: The exuberance of the Jazz Age with World War I safely behind us, the boisterous rattle of [..] Read More


Eva Noblezada defies gravity in a pops concert Feb 15, 2016

BY LAWRENCE TOPPMAN
ltoppman@charlotteobserver.com

Nobody covered Tryon Street in flowers or dropped confetti from office towers, but a champion flew back to Charlotte this week. < [..] Read More


If you've wished Charlotte Symphony would dare more, line up for '16-'17 tickets now Feb 5, 2016

BY LAWRENCE TOPPMAN
ltoppman@charlotteobserver.com

Wow.

A world-premiere percussion concerto. Choral masterpieces by Bruckner, Mendelssohn and Mahler. Seven works [..] Read More


Wanna Place A Bet? From Breweries To Symphonies, The Game Is On Feb 4, 2016

Anybody can promise to wear the opponent's jersey should their own team fall short. As far as friendly wagers go, that's pretty pedestrian (I'm looking at you, Denver and Charlotte mayors).
< [..] Read More


A Clarinetist's Life: Gene Kavadlo Jan 15, 2016

As told to Michael J. Solender

Eugene Kavadlo, 70, is the Principal Clarinetist with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra. This is his 41st year with CSO.

Right out of college, my [..] Read More


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