The Palomar Symphony Orchestra, directed by Dr. Ellen Weller, has announced its new season, and invites strings players from North County to join this vibrant group of musicians. Weller, a professor of music at Palomar College, says that the success of last year’s “Water Music” series has inspired her to continue to think in terms of year-long program themes.
“This year, we are focusing on the elements of music: harmony, melody, rhythm, and of course the most important element, soul. We have some very special soloists this season, and we are teaming up with the Palomar Chorale and the Palomar Chamber Singers, directed by Sally Husch Dean, for two concerts.”
The first concert of the season is Saturday October 10th at the Howard Brubeck Theatre on the Palomar College campus in San Marcos. “This first concert will focus on harmony, starting with the imaginative and colorful Variations on a Theme by Haydn, written by Johannes Brahms. We will then follow that piece with the remarkably rich textures of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3, featuring Dr. William Fried, a brilliant young pianist who studied at UCSD.”
The second concert, “Melody,” will showcase the Palomar Chamber Singers in Daniel Pinkham’s Christmas Cantata and Bach’s Magnificat, finishing with Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5. “Rhythm” will be the theme of the March 2016 concert shared with the Palomar Pacific Concert Band directed by Kenneth Bell, with music by Leonard Bernstein, Duke Ellington, Michael Jackson and Joseph Zawinul of the group Weather Report. The final concert in May, “Soul” features music by Wolfgang Mozart, honoring the 225th anniversary of the composer’s death with his Requiem Mass.
The PSO will also continue the tradition of pre-concert lobby talks started by Weller. “Audience members have expressed that they are enjoying the informal chats in the lobby exploring the history of the music, meeting the featured performers, and getting a sense of what to listen for in the concert.” The talks also crossed disciplinary boundaries, teaming up with experts in cultural history, science and Project Wildlife to connect the musical themes with real-world issues.
The first rehearsal is Tuesday, August 18th, and local musicians in the community are invited to join by enrolling in the Palomar College course MUS 198. “If you played a string instrument in high school, no matter how long ago, we want you to join this splendid and friendly group of music students, active and retired music teachers and talented amateurs,” Weller said.
For more information, see the Palomar Performing Arts website at www.palomarperforms.com.