The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts has slipped what they hope will become a new tradition into the city’s arsenal of yearend entertainment. The Strauss Festival starts soon, but the first Strauss highlighted isn’t Richard, it’s Johann.
“...Who influenced Richard Strauss quite a bit,” says the San Antonio Symphony's Music Director, Sebastian Lang-Lessing. He’s talking about that New Year’s Eve event at the Tobin.
The San Antonio Symphony’s busy season continues, but a slew of concerts over the last two days, is for an audience unlike most. Children by the hundreds filed, in surprisingly orderly fashion, into the Tobin Center Friday to hear "The Planets" by Gustav Holst.
"We have over 3,000 students coming here this morning to hear the concert,” said Jeremy Brimhall, the San Antonio Symphony’s Education Director.
(Click on ‘Listen’ above to hear the symphony)
"The music is so powerful and it showcases our orchestra so well.”
This Saturday night, the San Antonio Symphony and the US Air Force Band of the West team up to present their tenth annual Salute to Armed Forces concert at Laurie Auditorium.
Conducting the orchestra will be the San Antonio Symphony’s Akiko Fujimoto, and the program includes patriotic music by Aaron Copland, John Willams, and George M. Cohan. Fujimoto says the added touch of 13 brass players from the Air Force is a boon to the orchestra’s sound.
The San Antonio Symphony celebrates 75 years this season, and they are definitely celebrating in style. After a combined debut earlier this month with Ballet San Antonio and the Opera San Antonio, the symphony takes up residence at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts on September 20. That night, super star soprano Renee Fleming will join the orchestra and music director Sebastian Lang-Lessing for an evening of incredible music making. The season officially starts on October 10 with a performance of Gustav Mahler’s “Symphony No. 2.”
Sebastian Lang-Lessing is gearing up for Thursday night’s opening of the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts. Thursday I was at the last Ballet San Antonio rehearsal before the move into the Tobin and Lang-Lessing had acoustics on his mind.
“There are two aspects to acoustics: There is the one, hearing on stage, but then there is the more important issue, how is the listening experience for the audience," he said. "And there are a lot of halls that are difficult onstage and wonderful in the hall. And there are other halls that are great onstage and bad in the hall.”
The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts opens on September 4, and San Antonio Symphony Music Director Sebastian Lang-Lessing described the new home for the symphony.
“I have to say it’s very chic. And it’s very stylish and modern, and yet amazingly intimate,” he said.
Lang-Lessing has been involved in the development in the Tobin for years. He said he thinks the Tobin will be the place for performing arts in the city, but he wanted to make this important distinction.
It’s not "The Voice" or "American Idol," but there are some vocal tryouts coming soon. No, you can’t expect to be dissed by tattoo’d rock stars, but you just might get to travel internationally if you pass the audition.
“We are looking for all kinds of singers, all kinds of voice parts," said Chancey Blackburn, the vice-chair of the San Antonio Mastersingers. "The chorus is made up of singers who have been masters of music performance, all the way to singers like me, with no formal training.”
I asked her what someone who is thinking of coming to try out can expect.
Each season, the San Antonio Symphony welcomes a handful of new musicians to its ranks…and this season, the orchestra welcomes a new assistant concertmaster. Violinist Sarah Silver is a Pittsburgh native whose father is a long time violist in the Pittsburgh Symphony. Her mother is a music teacher and orchestra director in the public school system. It’s not too surprising that Sarah ended up falling in love with music at a very young age.
On Tuesday, August 19, you’re invited downtown to a special pop-up performance featuring members of the San Antonio Symphony. As part of the city’s Downtown Tuesday initiative (offering free parking at area garages, special events, and restaurant deals), the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts will offer a special preview of their new performance space.