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Arts & Entertainment

Richmond Symphony Announces its 2020-2021 Season

Rush Hour at Hardywood, Bugs Bunny at the Symphony, and a world-premiere work for trumpet by Richmond native Trey Pollard are just a few of this year’s highlights.

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The Richmond Symphony announced its 63rd Season today, highlighting a range of programming, renowned guest artists, and commemorations as part of its five concert series:  Altria Masterworks, Metro on the Move, Rush Hour at Hardywood, Symphony Pops, and Atlantic Union Bank Lollipops.

The announcement comes as the Symphony wraps up its Music Director search with five candidates being considered to replace former Music Director Steven Smith. The announcement of the new Music Director and his/her participation in the 2020-21 season is anticipated later this Spring.

“Our 2020-21 season marks the beginning of a fresh, new chapter in the Symphony’s great story,” said David Fisk, executive director of the Richmond Symphony. “Not simply are we celebrating our heritage by honoring the major anniversaries of Beethoven and of our Richmond Symphony Chorus; we are excited to be programming works by some of today’s most dynamic composers and presenting diverse guest artists. Leading the orchestra in the year ahead will be our new Music Director, whom we look forward to introducing to our audiences next season, with the warmest of welcomes.”

ALTRIA MASTERWORKS

The eight-program Altria Masterworks series, performed at the Dominion Energy Center’s Carpenter Theatre, is comprised of new and traditional symphonic repertoire, engaging some of the best classical artists in the industry today. The following are highlights of the 2020-21 Masterworks season:

  • The Symphony’s Opening Weekend will take place on Sept. 19-20, 2020, with A Century of American Sound,” showcasing musical contributions that helped define American classical music. Aaron Diehl, known for classical and jazz piano, will perform Gershwin, alongside works by Ellington; William Grant Still, a groundbreaking black composer and conductor; and acclaimed Leonard Bernstein Award recipient Jessie Montgomery.
  • The Symphony will celebrate the 250th Birthday of Beethoven by performing the composer’s iconic Symphony No. 9 (Nov. 14-15, 2020) and Symphony No. 5 (April 17-18, 2021) on the Altria Masterworks series.
  • The Symphony will honor the 50th anniversary and contributions of the Richmond Symphony Chorus through the performance of beloved choral works, including Faure’s Pavane (Nov. 14-15, 2020); Dvorak’s Te Deum (Feb. 6, 2021); and Haydn’s The Creation (May 15, 2021).
  • The Symphony will perform contemporary works from five of today’s most cutting-edge composers on this series, including Coincident Dances by Jessie Montgomery (Sept. 19-20, 2020); Oscillate by Andy Akiho (Oct. 17, 2020); Umoja, Anthem for Unity by Valerie Coleman (Jan. 16, 2021); Maslenitsa by Guillaume Connesson (March 6-7, 2021); and Abstractions by Anna Clyne (April 17-18, 2021).
  • Altria Masterworks will feature classical music favorites, including Ravel’s Bolero (Jan. 16, 2021); Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 (April 17-18, 2021); Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 (Nov. 14-15, 2020); Saint-Saens’ Symphony No. 3 “Organ” (Feb. 6, 2021); Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suites, Nos. 1 and 2 (Jan. 16, 2021); Barber’s Violin Concerto (April 17-18, 2021); Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 (March 6-7, 2021); among others.
  • Exciting guest artist debuts with the Richmond Symphony will happen on Altria Masterworks, including pianist Aaron Diehl (Sept. 19-20, 2020); violinist Melissa White (Oct. 17, 2020); pianist Gabriela Martinez (Mar. 6-7, 2021); and violinist Rachel Barton Pine (April 17-18, 2021).

METRO ON THE MOVE

The four-program Metro on the Move series is made up of chamber orchestra favorites, featuring Richmond Symphony musicians as soloists in more intimate settings.  The following are highlights from the 2020-21 Metro on the Move series:

  • In addition to Sunday performances at Randolph-Macon College’s Blackwell Auditorium, the Symphony will perform three Saturday concerts at the new Baxter Perkinson Center for the Arts & Education in Chester, Va.  The first concert will be on Jan. 23, 2021.
  • The Metro on the Move series will feature Richmond Symphony musicians Thomas Schneider, principal bassoon, performing Rossini’s Bassoon Concerto (Oct. 25, 2020), and Concertmaster Daisuke Yamamoto (Feb. 20-21, 2021), leading Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos No. 1 and 3.
  • This series will include contemporary works from four of today’s most dynamic composers, including Harp of Nerves by Hilary Purrington (April 24-25, 2021); Variations on an Unheard Theme by Zachary Wadsworth (April 24-25, 2021); Little Moonhead by Melinda Wagner (Feb. 20-21, 2021), and Entr’acte by Caroline Shaw (Jan. 23-24, 2021).
  • Classical favorites will be heard on this Metro on the Move series including Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 (April 24-25, 2021), honoring Beethoven’s 250th birthday; Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos No. 1 and 3 (Feb. 20-21, 2021); Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 “Italian,” (Oct. 25, 2020) and more.
  • Acclaimed guitarist JIJI will make her Richmond Symphony debut with Purrington’s Harp of Nerves (April 24-25, 2021).

RUSH HOUR AT HARDYWOOD

The four-program Rush Hour series is made up of casual, one-hour concerts that take place at 6:30 p.m. in the tasting room of Hardywood Park Craft Brewery- Scott’s Addition. Patrons can relax and enjoy craft beer and food, while listening to small-ensemble favorites by the Richmond Symphony. Rush Hour at Hardywood will continue this season, incorporating programs similar to those of the Metro on the Move series (see highlights above).

SYMPHONY POPS

The four-program Symphony Pops series features popular guest artists performing favorites in pop, jazz, classical, Broadway repertoire, and more, alongside the Richmond Symphony at the Dominion Energy Center’s Carpenter Theatre.

Highlights from 2020-21 Symphony Pops series include:

  • VCU Professor of Trumpet and Jazz Rex Richardson will debut a world-premiere work for trumpet by Richmond native Trey Pollard. The premiere is part of a program celebrating the 100th birthdays of Charlie “Bird” Parker and Dave Brubeck (Feb. 27, 2021).
  • Warner Bros. presents BUGS BUNNY AT THE SYMPHONY, 30th Anniversary Edition-LOONEY TUNES and all related characters and elements © & TM Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. (s20). This concert will bring the world’s favorite classic LOONEY TUNES projected on the big screen, while the Richmond Symphony performs the exhilarating, original Carl Stalling scores LIVE! (Oct. 3, 2020 at Altria Theater). The program is conducted by George Daugherty, created by George Daugherty & David Ka Lik Wong.
  • “Frank & Ella: A Night of Jazz” will feature vocalists Capathia Jenkins and Tony DeSare, reliving the magic of Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald (April 10, 2021).
  • Family favorite Let it Snow! is back again to celebrate the start of the holiday season (Dec. 5-6, 2020).

ATLANTIC UNION BANK LOLLIPOPS

The four-program Atlantic Union Bank LolliPops series is made up of short, sensory-friendly concerts for the entire family.  Taking place at Dominion Energy Center’s Carpenter Theatre, the LolliPops series includes pre-concert activities for kids, including an instrument petting zoo.

The following are highlights from the 2020-21 Atlantic Union Bank LolliPops series:

  • The Symphony will celebrate the Mexican holiday Day of the Dead (Día de los Muertos) by performing works honoring the tradition, in collaboration with a performance by the Latin Ballet of Richmond (Oct. 31, 2020). The concert will be presented in both English and Spanish.
  • The Symphony will also bring back LolliPops favoritesThe Snowman (Nov. 28, 2020), “The Life and Times of Beethoven” (Feb. 27, 2021), and the timeless tale of Peter and the Wolf (April 10, 2021).

SUBSCRIPTIONS

Subscription packages are now on-sale for the Richmond Symphony’s Altria Masterworks, Metro on the Move, Rush Hour at Hardywood, Symphony Pops, and Atlantic Union Bank LolliPops series concerts.

Subscribers enjoy a variety of benefits, including priority seating, 20% off single ticket prices, flexible ticket exchanges, pre-sale opportunities for special events and concerts, and much more.

To renew your subscription or to become a new subscriber, please call 804-788-1212, or visit www.richmondsymphony.com.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Arts & Entertainment

2nd Street Festival and the Richmond Folk Festival Dates Announced

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Two of Virginia’s largest and most beloved events return this fall to Downtown Richmond.

The 2nd Street Festival, in partnership with the City of Richmond, is October 1-2, in the historic Jackson Ward neighborhood.

The Richmond Folk Festival, in partnership with the National Council for the Traditional Arts and the City of Richmond, is October 7-9, along Downtown Richmond’s riverfront.

“Venture Richmond Events is proud to produce these two festivals that have brought so much attention to two Downtown neighborhoods – Jackson Ward and the Riverfront,” said Stephen Lecky, director of events for Venture Richmond. “Both the 2nd Street Festival and the Richmond Folk Festival are economic drivers bringing a combined 200,000+ people Downtown and generating $39.5 million in economic impact annually. With six stages along the Riverfront and four stages in Jackson Ward, these two events that are only a week apart, showcase world class entertainment, food, arts and culture in Downtown.”

The 2nd Street Festival is sponsored in part by: City of Richmond, Dominion Energy, Altria, NewMarket Corp., Atlantic Union Bank, Virginia Union University, Brown Distributing, CoStar Group, and Community Foundation for a greater Richmond.

The Richmond Folk Festival is sponsored in part by: City of Richmond, Dominion Energy, Altria, NewMarket Corp., CarMax, CoStar Group, Brown Distributing, Community Foundation for a greater Richmond, Atlantic Union Bank, Virginia is for Lovers, National Council for the Traditional Arts, Center for Cultural Vibrancy, and the Children’s Museum.

Check out pictures from last year’s Folk Festival here.

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Arts & Entertainment

Tonight’s Friday Cheers is Cancelled Due to Weather

For tonight’s Friday Cheers ticket holders, your tickets will automatically be refunded by Tickets-to-Buy for the face value within 14 business days of the cancellation notice.

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This is the first time that I can remember that Friday Cheers has pulled the plug due to weather concerns. Understandable due to the forecast of high winds.

Hot off the press release printing press.

For the safety of our patrons, artists and staff we must unfortunately cancel tonight’s Friday Cheers with Japanese Breakfast and Abby Huston. We understand this is a tremendous disappointment, and we share that sentiment.

“We’ve produced hundreds of outdoor events and have hosted hundreds of thousands of patrons, but I don’t believe that we have ever had a more definitive forecast predicting unsafe weather as we have for this evening,” said Lisa Sims, CEO of Venture Richmond. “We have been advised by several meteorologists that severe weather is certain and, frankly, cancelling is our only choice.”

For tonight’s Friday Cheers ticket holders, your tickets will automatically be refunded by Tickets-to-Buy for the face value within 14 business days of the cancellation notice.

Thank you for understanding this difficult decision.

Website: https://venturerichmond.com/our-events/friday-cheers-2022/

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Arts on the Lawn returns to Hermitage Richmond for second year May 14th

Open to all residents, families, team members, and community friends who share a love of art and creating.

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Retirement community Hermitage Richmond is hosting its second annual Arts on the Lawn event on Saturday, May 14, 2022.

The event is free and will be held outdoors on Hermitage Richmond’s front lawn at 1600 Westwood Avenue from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our talent we have here at Hermitage Richmond,” said Amy Chapman, Hermitage Richmond’s Executive Director. “Our resident artists are excited to share their work with the community and invite other artists to do so as well. We want everyone to know that the fine arts are alive and thriving at Hermitage Richmond. It is such a great way to kick off the summer and have our residents and community come together.”

More than 50 local artists and creators will feature their paintings, photography, pottery, fiber art, handmade jewelry, woodwork, and more. All artists will benefit 100% from their sales.

There will also be three food trucks and live music from Chris and Suzi of Thorp Jenson plus GreenSpring International Academy of Music student performers at the event.

Net proceeds at Arts on the Lawn will benefit Hermitage Richmond’s Opening Minds through Art (OMA) program, which is an evidence-based intergenerational art-making program benefiting people with dementia.

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