Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Area orchestras tuned up for new seasons

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Another season is at hand for the symphony orchestras in our region.

These large organizations are the source of community pride and artistic accomplishment. Most of the music the orchestras play is of the ages – thus named classical.

The concerts are large events in a notable performance hall in each community.

Some musicians play in more than one of the orchestras.

Scanning the overall landscape, of note is this from the Fox Valley Symphony: It is the final season for Brian Groner as music director and conductor.

Here is a look at what lies ahead for the 2017-2018 season.

Civic Symphony of Green Bay

Season 22

Music director and conductor: Seong-Kyung Graham, 12th season

Info: gbcivic.org

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, Meyer Theatre, Green Bay

Brent Michael Davids: “By Our Nature.” Davids has collaborated with the Civic Symphony on several occasions. The piece accompanies a documentary about nature and the need to preserve and protect it.

Guest appearance by St. Norbert College show troupe Knights on Broadway, directed by Kent Paulsen: The troupe will join the orchestra in numbers from such Tony Award-winning musicals as “Too Darn Hot” from “Kiss Me Kate, “Bring Him Home” from “Les Miserables” and “Memory” from “Cats.”

Leonard Bernstein: “Candide Overture”

Aaron Copland: “Outdoor Overture”

Ron Nelson: “Rocky Point Holiday”

+ 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, Meyer Theatre, Green Bay: “Family Concert”

Engelbert Humperdinck: “Hansel and Gretel.” Concert version in collaboration with the St. Norbert College Opera Workshop

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 17, Meyer Theatre, Green Bay

Antonio Vivaldi: “Winter” from “Four Seasons”

Ludwig van Beethoven: “Symphony No. 1”

Johann Sebastian Bach: “Orchestral Suite No.1” With the Northeastern Wisconsin Dance Organization

Johann Strauss II: “Voices of Spring Waltz”

+ 3 p.m. Sunday, April 15, Weidner Center for the Performing Arts, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay campus

Giuseppe Verdi: “Requiem” A work for four soloists, double choir and orchestra. This is a collaboration concert with the UWGB Music Department that will feature approximately 200 singers including students from UWGB and St. Norbert College, members of the Green Bay Choral Artists and Dudley Birder Chorale and others from the community.

Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra

Season 51

Music director and conductor: Brian Groner, 18th and final season

Info; foxvalleysymphony.com

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton: “Russian Masters”

Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky: “Overture to Voyevoda, Op. 3, TH 1” 
Dmitry Shostakovich: “Violin Concerto No. 1, Op. 77, A minor,” Wen-Lei Gu, violin, of the faculty of Lawrence University, Appleton 
Modest Mussorgsky/arranged by Maurice Ravel: “Pictures at an Exhibition” 
+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton: “European Tour”

Gioachino Rossini: “Semiramide: Overture”
Richard Wagner: “Tristan und Isolde, WWV90: Prelude & Liebestod,” guest vocalist Katy Harth, a graduate of Lawrence University, Appleton 
Sergei Prokofiev: “Classical Symphony, Op. 25” 
Benjamin Britten: “Four Sea Interludes, Op. 33a” 

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 3, Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton: “Modern American Legends,” joined by composer and trombone player Chris Brubeck

Michael Daugherty: “Route 66” 
Chris Brubeck: “Fanfare to a Remarkable Friend” 
Chris Brubeck: “Prague Concerto for Bass Trombone and Orchestra” 
Aaron Copland: “Billy the Kid: Suite” 

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 3, Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton: “Mardi Gras in New Orleans”

Byron Stripling returns for a night of jazz from street parades in the French Quarter to late night jams in the city’s famed clubs.

+ 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 2, Fox Cities Performing Arts Center, Appleton: “Grand Finale,” with international star Joshua Bell joining for Brian Groner’s final performance with the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra

Hector Berlioz: “Roman Carnival” 
Jean Sibelius: “Symphony No. 2, Op. 43, D major”

Camille Saint-Saens: “Introduction & Rondo capriccioso” 
Nigel Hess: “Ladies in Lavender” 
Pablo de Sarasate: “Ziguenerweisen, Op. 20 (‘Gypsy Airs’)” 

Also, the orchestra presents a “Concertmaster Series” (see website) with the orchestra’s principals and special guests. Returning next summer is the “Brats, Beer & Beethoven” free family concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 14, 2018, at Fox Cities Stadium.

Manitowoc Symphony Orchestra

Season 67

Music director and conductor: Wayne Wildman, 27th season

Info: manitowocsymphony.org

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 14, Capitol Civic Centre, Manitowoc: “Songs of Our Nation,” a salute to veterans, with free admission to all military personnel and their spouses

Aaron Copland: “Fanfare for the Common Man”

Aaron Copland: “Appalachian Spring”

Richard Rodgers: “Victory at Sea”
Glenn Gould: “American Salute”

John Philip Sousa: “Stars and Stripes Forever”

Lee Greenwood: “God Bless the USA”

Irving Berlin: “God Bless America”

George Gershwin: “Strike Up the Band”
George M. Cohan: “George M. Cohan Salute”

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 18, Capitol Civic Centre, Manitowoc: “Songs of Harvest & Holidays”

Edvard Grieg: “In Autumn”
Alexander Glazunov: “Autumn”
Giuseppe Verdi: “Autumn” from the “Four Seasons Ballet in I Vespri Siciliani”
Emile Waldteufel: “Skater’s Waltz”
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov: “Polonaise from Christmas Night”
Peter Illych Tchaikovsky: “Nutcracker Suite”

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10, Capitol Civic Centre, Manitowoc: “Songs of Love,” featuring Bergen Baker, soprano

Selections from:

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: “Don Giovanni”

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: “The Marriage of Figaro”

Ludwig van Beethoven: “Fidelio”

Gioachino Rossini: “The Barber of Seville”

Gioachino Rossini: “William Tell”

Leonard Bernstein: “West Side Story”

Cole Porter: “Kiss Me Kate”

Richard Rodgers: “Oklahoma!”

Richard Rodgers: “Carousel”

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 21, Capitol Civic Centre, Manitowoc: “A Song of Creation”

Franz Joseph Haydn: “The Creation Parts I and II,” featuring Rachel Ware Carlton, soprano; Luke Honeck, tenor; Christian Bester, baritone and members of the Capitol Civic Centre Community Chorale, Manitowoc Lincoln Chamber Choir, Manitowoc Lutheran Lancer Singers and Roncolli High School Oratorio Choir

Next season alert: Oct. 13, 2018, ticket sales to be announced: “Daryl Stuermer Symphony.” Stuermer, of Wisconsin, is the world renowned guitarist of the band Genesis. With his core band featuring vocalist Woody Mankowski (formerly of Green Bay), Stuermer joins with orchestras around the world to reinvent the Genesis concert experience.

Oshkosh Symphony Orchestra

Season 76

Info: oshkoshsymphony.org

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, Grand Opera House, Oshkosh:  “Holiday Celebration”

Andrew Sewell conducts as the orchestra is joined by singers.

Sheboygan Symphony Orchestra

Season 99

Music director and conductor: Kevin McMahon, eighth season

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Mozart and Tchaikovsky”

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart” “Symphony No 36 (‘Linz’)”

Peter Illych Tchaikovsky: “Variations on a Rococo Theme,” featuring Jichen Li, violoncello

Peter Illych Tchaikovsky: “Symphony No. 2 (‘Ukrainian’)”

+ 7:30 p.m. Nov. 11, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Brahms and Dvorak”
Antonin Dvořák: “Slavonic Dance Op. 46 No. 1”

Johannes Brahms: “Double Concerto,” featuring Chee-Yun Kim, violin, and Christopher Rex, violoncello

Antonin Dvořák: “Symphony No. 9 (‘From the New World’)”

+ 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Christmas Treasures,” with the orchestra is joined by the Sheboygan Symphony Chorus, Fabian Qamar, director. This concert is not part of the subscription concert series. 

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 3, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Generations”

Carl Maria vonWeber: “Overture to Der Freischütz”

Franz Joseph Haydn: “Symphony No. 94 (‘Surprise’)”                           

Marcus Paus: “Timpani Concerto” (U.S. premiere) with guest artist Jauvon Gilliam, timpani

Claude Debussy: “La Mer”

+ 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 11, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Teddy Bears and Tunes,” a Valentine concert geared to children ages 3 to 3rd grade. Selected works tell musical stories. Teddy bears and blankets are welcome for the youngest audience members.

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday March 10, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “‘Spring’ with American Classics”

Alan Hovhaness: “And God Created Great Whales”

Lukas Foss: “Renaissance Concerto,” with guest artist Carol Wincenc, flute

Christopher Theofanidis: “Rainbow Body”

Robert Schumann: “Symphony No. 1 (‘Spring’)”

+ 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 12, Stefanie H. Weill Center for Performing Arts, Sheboygan: “Romantic,” featuring the Sheboygan Symphony Chorus

Johannes Brahms: “Nänie”

Johannes Brahms: “Schicksalslied” with Sheboygan Symphony Chorus

Gustav Mahler: “Symphony No. 1 (‘Titan’)”                                                 

Also keep an eye on programming of the Lawrence University Orchestra and youth orchestras throughout the region, most supported by the above orchestras.

Contact me at warren.gerds@wearegreenbay.com. Watch for my on-air Critic at Large editions on WFRV-TV at 6:20 a.m. Sundays. My new books, “Three Miles Past Lost and in the Pickers” and “Nickolaus and Olive – a naïve opera (in words),” are available online and in Green Bay at Neville Public Museum, Bosse’s and The Reader’s Loft.

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