2020/21 Virtual Season

To enrich lives through the shared experience of extraordinary music.

This is the Victoria Symphony’s promise to our audience, musicians, donors, sponsors, and to the broader arts loving community as well. It is at the core of what we value as an organization. Despite the current constraints, we are passionately committed to finding new and exciting ways to deliver on this inspiring mission and to keep us all connected in the process.

Our 2020/21 Virtual Season has been designed to reflect the vibrancy, diversity, and creativity of our beloved musicians, our Music Director Christian Kluxen, and our Principal Pops Conductor Sean O’Loughlin. Our plan is to share several virtual concerts over the coming weeks and months: some larger-scale concerts featuring the whole symphony, socially distanced on stage, and some featuring quartets and quintets playing live together from local venues that you know and love.

This is a unique opportunity for you to enjoy the Victoria Symphony on your own terms. You and others all over the world will be able to enjoy these events for free in HD from your living rooms, on the bus, or anywhere else as long as you have an internet connection and a device. Even though most people agree that the live concert experience will never be replaced by virtual concerts, digital technology has become incredibly flexible. By providing you with intimate interviews, backstage access, enhanced program notes, and other innovative online tools, we are confident you will see things from a new and different perspective that may ironically bring you closer to the orchestra!

Thanks to the support of our donors and government partners, our virtual season will be available for free. Increasing people’s accessibility to extraordinary music is one of the key benefits of online offerings and we wanted to make it clear to our entire community how grateful we are for your 80 years of ongoing support. This said, with the longer-term health of the organization in mind, I ask you to consider, if possible, making a tax-deductible donation at each of these virtual concerts in lieu of purchasing tickets. It will go a long way to help us keep the music playing.

Victoria Symphony - Vivaldi's Four Seasons, October 1, 2020

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons

Thursday, October 1 @ 7:30 pm

Vivaldi – Four Seasons

Terence Tam, leader & soloist

Victoria Symphony - Tchaikovsky Serenade for Strings, October 15, 2020

Tchaikovsky Serenade for Strings

Thursday, October 15 @ 7:30 pm

Pärt – Fratres
Tobin Stokes – Bits of Beauty
Tchaikovsky – Serenade for Strings in C major

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until November 13, 2020

Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings is the feature piece of the Victoria Symphony’s second virtual season concert. The dramatic, rich and elegant piece is preceded by Pärt’s Fratres and Victoria’s own Tobin Stokes’ Bits of Beauty.

Victoria Symphony - Autumn Reflections - Schubert Symphony No. 5, October 29, 2020

Autumn Reflections – Schubert Symphony No. 5

Thursday, October 29 @ 7:30 pm

Jordan Nobles – Suite from Surface Tension
Schubert – Symphony No. 5 in B flat major

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until November 27, 2020

The virtual season continues with Autumn Reflections – Schubert’s Symphony No. 5.  Schubert’s fabulously graceful and melodic Symphony is paired with Juno award winning Canadian composer Jordan Nobles’ Suite from Surface Tension, a work inspired by the fluid dynamics of water.

Victoria Symphony - Angela Hewitt Plays Bach, November 12, 2020

Angela Hewitt Plays Bach

Thursday, November 12 @ 7:30 pm

J.S. Bach – Keyboard Concerto in D minor (BWV 1052)
J.S. Bach – Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring (Chorale from Cantata 147) (arr. Hess)
Grieg – Holberg Suite

Angela Hewitt, leader & soloist

Terence Tam, leader

Canadian piano superstar Angela Hewitt returns to Victoria to perform Bach’s bold and dynamic Keyboard Concerto in D minor along with the ever-popular Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring. Grieg’s playful and meditative Holberg Suite rounds off this delightful program.

Victoria Symphony - Magnificent Brass, November 26, 2020

Magnificent Brass

Thursday, November 26 @ 7:30 pm

Copland  – Fanfare for the Common Man
Gabrieli – Canzon duodecimi toni (arr. King)
Crespo – Bruckner Etüde für das tiefe Blech
Husa – Divertimento for Brass and Percussion
J.S. Bach – Ich ruf zu Dir, Herr Jesu Christ (arr. Crespo)
Pachelbel – Magnificat (arr. Frackenpohl)
Gabrieli – Canzona per sonare No. 2 (arr. King)

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until December 25, 2020

For the first time in the 2020/21 virtual season, the Victoria Symphony brass players take to the stage to perform a collection of brass favourites including Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man, Pachelbel’s Magnificat as well as works from Bach, Bruckner, Gabrieli and Husa.

Victoria Symphony - Appalachian Spring, December 10, 2020

Appalachian Spring

Thursday, December 10 @ 7:30 pm

Copland – Appalachian Spring
Barber – Adagio for Strings
Ives – The Unanswered Question

Tania Miller, conductor

*This program will be available until January 8, 2021

Maestra Tania Miller returns to conduct the Victoria Symphony in Copland’s Appalachian Spring.  Often described as ‘music of and for the American people’, the popular piece reflects the vitality and richness of the pioneering tradition.  The Unanswered Question by Ives and Barber’s elegiac Adagio for Strings complete the program.

Victoria Symphony - Christmas Pops: Joy to the Brass, December 20, 2020

Christmas Pops: Joy to the Brass!

Sunday, December 20 @ 7:00 pm

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until January 22, 2021

Celebrate the holiday season with your favourite MC Sean O’Loughlin as he decks the halls with all things Brass. Join conductor Giuseppe Pietraroia and Victoria Symphony brass and percussion musicians for a brassy Christmas including holiday favourites like O Holy Night and music from the Nutcracker as well as Frosty the Snowman, A Charlie Brown Christmas and more. As a special holiday gift, the concert will include the world-premiere of Sean O’Loughlin’s musical setting for “Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus.”

Victoria Symphony - Debussy & Ravel, À la Française, January 7, 2021

Debussy & Ravel: À la Française

Thursday, January 7 @ 7:30 pm

Debussy (arr. Sachs), – Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune (Afternoon of a Faun)
Ravel – Pavane pour une infante défunte (Pavane for a Dead Princess)
Ravel – Ma mère l’Oye (Mother Goose)

 Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until February 5, 2021

The New Year begins with a performance of 19th century French classics including Debussy’s pivotal and dreamy Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun and Ravel’s charming Mother Goose Suite depicting five fairy tales in vivid orchestrations that bring these children’s stories to life.

Victoria Symphony - A Greeting from Denmark, January 21, 2021

A Greeting from Denmark

Thursday, January 21 @ 7:30 pm

Danish String Quartet (arr. Sørensen) – Nordic Suite
Nielsen – Little Suite

 Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until February 19, 2021

This concert represents a musical postcard from Music Director Christian Kluxen from his home country of Denmark. The Danish String Quartet’s Nordic Suite captures the essence of Scandinavian folk music while Nielsen’s most widely performed work, Little Suite, showcases the composer’s fluency in the late-romantic style from a uniquely Scandinavian perspective.

Victoria Symphony - Shostakovich Chamber Symphony, February 4, 2021

Shostakovich Chamber Symphony

Thursday, February 4 @ 7:30 pm

Shostakovich (arr. Barshai) – Chamber Symphony in C minor
Goddard – Trumpet Concerto

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor
Ryan Cole, trumpet

*This program will be available until March 5, 2021

An orchestral arrangement of Shostakovich’s eighth string quartet, the Chamber Symphony in C minor, is regarded as one of the most powerful works written in the 20th century. Confessional and elegiac, the five movements of this work communicate an enigmatic and tragic mood that stand in stark contrast to Marcus Goddard’s celebratory and virtuosic Trumpet Concerto written for VS principal trumpet Ryan Cole.

Victoria Symphony - Beethoven's Triple Concerto, February 18, 2021

Beethoven’s Triple Concerto

Thursday, February 18 @ 7:30 pm

Beethoven – Concerto for Violin, Cello, and Piano in C major

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor
Terence Tam, violin
Brian Yoon, cello
Lorraine Min, piano

Composed around the same time as his Eroica Symphony, Beethoven’s rarely heard Triple Concerto is often overshadowed by the composer’s more serious work. Scored uniquely for an orchestra and a trio of soloists (violin, cello, and piano), the three movements of this concerto are delightful proof that he was as adept at being charming as he was at being dramatic.

Victoria Symphony - French Winds, March 4, 2021

French Winds

Thursday, March 4 @ 7:30 pm

Dukas – Fanfare from La Péri
Gounod – Petite Symphonie
Poulenc – Suite Française

*This program will be available until April 2, 2021

This program of charming French music for winds begins with Dukas’ Fanfare from his ballet La Péri followed by Gounod’s sparkling and vibrant Petite Symphonie, and ending with Poulenc’s neoclassical Suite Française written as incidental music for Edouard Bourdet’s play La Reine Margot.

Victoria Symphony - Min Plays Mozart, March 18, 2021

Min Plays Mozart

Thursday, March 18 @ 7:30 pm

Tchaikovsky (arr. Tobani) – Andante cantabile
Mozart (arr. Lachner) – Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major
Bartók (arr.Willner) – Romanian Folk Dances

Terence Tam, leader
Lorraine Min, piano

*This program will be available until April 18, 2021

Lorraine Min has been praised by the New York Times for her “impeccable phrase-shaping” and “crystalline sound,” For this program, this local musical treasure is reunited with the orchestra for what is arguably Mozart’s most famous work for keyboard, his Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major. Also included on the program are Tchaikovsky’s Andante Cantabile and Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances.

Victoria Symphony - Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges, April 1, 2020

Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges

Thursday, April 1 @ 7:30 pm

Saint-Georges – Symphony in D major, Overture to “L’Amant Anonyme”
Mozart – Overture to Idomeneo
Saint-Georges – Symphony in G major
Haydn – Allegro con spirit from Symphony No. 86, Paris in D
Saint-Georges – Rondeau from Symphonie Concertante in E-flat

*This program will be available until April 30, 2021

Joseph Bologne, also known as “Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges” was a remarkable violinist, composer, soldier and athlete. Despite having to deal with the challenges of being a person of mixed race, he was regarded as one of the most impressive figures of 18th century Paris. Among his many accomplishments he had the honour of leading the first performance of Haydn’s Paris symphonies. This program includes music by Saint-Georges, Mozart and Haydn.

Victoria Symphony - Mozart Horn Concertos, April 15, 2021

Mozart Horn Concertos

Thursday, April 15 @ 7:30 pm

Mozart – Horn Concerto No. 2 in E-flat major
R. Strauss (arr. Benedict) – Sextet from Capriccio
Mozart – Horn Concerto No. 3 in E-flat major

Alana Despins, horn
Michael Oswald, horn

*This program will be available until May 14, 2021

Mozart’s Horn Concertos are joyful demonstrations of the instrument’s expressive capacity as well as of the remarkable skills of Mozart’s lifelong friend and horn virtuoso Joseph Leutgeb for whom they were composed. Our two resident virtuosos, Alana Despins and Michael Oswald, perform concertos No. 3 and 2 respectively. Completing the program: the opening String Sextet from Richard Strauss’ opera Capriccio. Strauss himself wrote two horn concertos inspired both by his great idol, Mozart, and by his father who was a professional horn player.

Written by Clemens Krauss and Richard Strauss
Hawkes & Song (London) Ltd. / Boosey & Hawkes, Inc.
By arrangement with Concord

Victoria Symphony - Poulenc Organ Concerto, April 29, 2021

Poulenc Organ Concerto

Thursday, April 29 @ 7:30 pm

Adès – Three Studies from Couperin
Poulenc – Concerto for organ, strings and timpani

Donald Hunt, organ

*This program will be available until May 28, 2021

This concert introduces Christ Church Cathedral’s Director of Music, Donald Hunt, in his Symphony debut performing Poulenc’s Concerto for organ, strings and timpani on the majestic instrument built in 2005 by the late Helmuth Wolff for this extraordinary space. Also included in the program is Adés’ Three Studies from Couperin, an offbeat and unexpected tribute to the French Baroque master.

Victoria Symphony - Yoon Plays C.P.E. Bach, May 13, 2021

Yoon Plays C.P.E Bach

Thursday, May 13 @ 7:30 pm

C.P.E. Bach – Cello Concerto in A minor
Telemann – Orchestral Suite La Bizarre in G major

Brian Yoon, cello

*This program will be available until June 11, 2021

A transitional figure between the Baroque and Classical periods, C.P.E Bach was J.S. Bach’s most celebrated son. His writing is wildly expressive and his Cello Concerto in A minor as played by VS principal cello Brian Yoon demonstrates why he had such a profound effect on the composers who followed him. Completing this program is Telemann’s Orchestral Suite: La Bizarre in G major.

Victoria Symphony - Victoria Goes Broadway, May 27, 2021.

Victoria Goes Broadway

Thursday, May 27 @ 7:30 pm

Classic Broadway
Selections from Sound of Music  – Rodgers and Hammerstein (arr. Bennet)
Symphonic Dances from Fidler on the Roof – Jerry Bock (arr. Hearshen)
Selections from Les Misérables – Claude-Michel Schönberg (arr. Lowden)
Selections from Phantom of the Opera – Webber (arr.Custer)

Modern Broadway
Suite from Hamilton – Miranda (arr. Brubaker)
The Greatest Showman – Pasek and Paul, Trapanese (arr. O’Loughlin)
Highlights from Wicked – Schwartz (arr. Ricketts)

Giuseppe Pietraroia, conductor

*This program will be available until June 25, 2021

Soak in the bright lights and sounds of Broadway as the Victoria Symphony takes you on a trip to the Great White Way. MC Sean O’Loughlin and conductor Giuseppe Pietraroia join forces for a magical evening of Broadway’s greatest hits. Music from The Sound of Music, Les Misérables (Les Miz), Wicked, The Phantom of the Opera and more will surely delight your eyes and ears.

Victoria Symphony/Pacific Opera Victoria - Phaedra, June 10, 2021
Victoria Symphony/Pacific Opera Victoria - Serenade, June 11, 2021

Phaedra & Serenade

Thursday, June 10 @ 7:30 pm (Phaedra)

Friday, June 11 @ 7:30 pm (Serenade)

Immerse yourself in the passion.

A two-night première of Benjamin Britten’s small-scale epic masterpieces. Conducted by Maestro Timothy Vernon, this dynamic double-bill performance from Pacific Opera Victoria and the Victoria Symphony features mezzo-soprano Allyson McHardy, tenor Colin Ainsworth, horn player Alana Despins, and musicians of the Victoria Symphony.

Phaedra premieres Thursday, June 10 | 7:30PM 

When forbidden passion cannot stay silent, a tragic hero journeys through blame and lust on her tempestuous search for serenity. Britten’s last vocal work covers the range of a full-scale opera in 15 minutes, including “…some of the most delicate orchestration ever written.” Bernard Holland, The New York Times. Phaedra is a musical ascension to annihilation.

Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings premieres Friday, June 11 | 7:30PM  

An evocative dialogue between horn and voice guides you through the sparkling glory of day and the seeping horrors of night. Powerful music shimmers with gemstone colours as the wild, poetic splendor of nature is celebrated through this eight-movement anthology.

Victoria Symphony - Tam Plays Mendelssohn, June 24, 2021

Tam Plays Mendelssohn

Thursday, June 24 @ 7:30 pm

Farrenc – Overture No. 2 in E-flat major
Mendelssohn – Violin Concerto in E minor

Terence Tam, violin

*This program will be available until July 23, 2021

The last concert in the Victoria Symphony’s 2020-21 Virtual Season closes as it opened with a programme featuring Concertmaster Terence Tam. Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto is an undisputed romantic masterpiece that is paired here with a work by Louise Farrenc, a French composer of the same period as Mendelssohn who rejected Parisian tastes and pursued instead the ideals of German absolute music. Her Overture No. 2 in E-flat major, Op. 24 is clearly influenced by Beethoven and evidence of why her music was performed widely in Europe during her lifetime.