Crescendo ~ An Evening in Barcelona

Honoring Farmers & Merchants Bank and Mr. W. Henry Walker with Long Beach Symphony’s 2024 Luminary Award

Join Long Beach Symphony for an unforgettable night of music and festivities during Crescendo ~ An Evening in Barcelona. We invite you to the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) for our annual benefit dinner, featuring performances by Esencia Flamenca and the Symphony’s Principal Trombone Alex Iles and his jazz quartet. The evening begins with cocktails and silent auction in the Sculpture Garden, then the Symphony’s renowned, one-of-a-kind live auction.

5 PM | Cocktails and Silent Auction

7 PM | Dinner, Luminary Award presentation, and music by The Alex Iles Jazz Quartet

Individual tickets and sponsorship tables can be ordered here. Single tickets are $350 each and sponsorship tables start at $5,000. For more information, please contact Mark Hilmar, Development Manager, at [email protected] or 562.436.3203 ext. 226.

 

Help us unite and inspire all people through the transformative power of music

All proceeds benefit the Long Beach Symphony’s artistic and education programs.

2024 Crescendo Organizing Committee

Cindy Costello, Co-chair

Charlotte Ginsburg, Co-chair

Barbara Blackwell

Bobbie Cusato

Margie Masterson

Love Stories

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Embark upon this musical journey which recognizes the Symphony’s meaningful relationships and partnerships in Long Beach, including the Cambodian community. This concert is a celebration of who we are. It will open with traditional Cambodian music, the ethereal performances of Cambodian dancers Modern Apsara, and the resounding Pin Peat Ensemble under the guidance of Master Ho.

This carefully curated program unfolds as a tapestry of cultural resonances, an ode to Long Beach’s diverse populace. Chinary Ung’s composition, “Water Rings, Overture,” emerges as a testament to the symbiosis of tradition and innovation, echoing the legacy of his mentor, Chinese-American composer Chou Wen-chung. Ung skillfully intertwines the threads of traditional Cambodian melodies with avant-garde elements, mirroring Wen-chung ‘s groundbreaking fusion with traditional Chinese music in a true cultural convergence. (Many audience members will recall Chinary Ung for Long Beach Symphony’s premiere production of KHMERASPORA.)

The Butterfly Lovers violin concerto, beautifully written as a collaboration by He Zhanhao and Chen Gang will feature guest artist Gao Can on violin.

Concluding this evocative journey (and season) is Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4, the same piece that closed Long Beach Symphony (then known as Philharmonic) 1st season on June 7, 1935! Delving into the depths of Tchaikovsky’s personal tribulations and a poignant expression of the composer’s tumultuous emotional landscape, the symphony unfolds as a powerful narrative that includes the fleeting romance that marked the composer’s tumultuous piece. Not to be understated, it was this piece that Music Director Eckart Preu used for his audition that gained him the prestigious podium with Long Beach Symphony in 2017. This symphony promises to be a grand crescendo, resonating with the transformative evolution of the orchestra under the conductor’s baton.


Audiences will enjoy the Classical Series fun and elegant evening surrounded by the Terrace Theater’s dazzling fountains and fire pits, live ensemble in the lobby, 6:30 PM Pre-Concert Talk to gain greater knowledge regarding the evening programming, and the ability to “Sip & Enjoy” in the concert hall.  Doors open at 6PM.


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Musical Fusion with Arturo Sandoval

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This evening will captivate a diverse audience drawn together by the magnetic allure of the multifaceted virtuoso, Arturo Sandoval. Renowned for his mastery in the realms of both jazz and classical music, Sandoval’s ten GRAMMY Awards and his expansive repertoire as a trumpeter, vocalist, storyteller, and composer ensure a captivating performance, promising a harmonious fusion of genres and emotions.

We open with Adam Schoenberg’s “Cool Cat,” a piece inspired by the captivating Los Angeles’ own P22, a thematic inspiration with vibrant fanfare. (We appreciate permission to play this piece for which LA Phil has exclusive rights.)

In honor of our virtuosic guest artist, George Gershwin’s “Cuban Overture” is a nod to Sandoval’s Cuban heritage. This piece, born from Gershwin’s immersive experiences in Havana in the 1930s and his fascination for Cuban music and percussion instruments reminds us of Gershwin’s return from Cuba with a suitcase full of instruments that will eloquently blend Cuban rhythms and instrumentation into this rich soundscape.

The orchestra takes center stage with Paul Hindemith’s “Symphonic Metamorphosis,” a composition serving as a dazzling and catchy showcase of the orchestra’s prowess. The piece, though perhaps not immediately recognizable by its title, is familiar to most. Born in Nazi Germany and fleeing first to Switzerland and eventually to America, Hindemith demonstrates his ability to draw inspiration from the romantic German composers and crafts a four-movement symphony that resonates with both familiarity and innovation, pleasing to musicians and audiences alike.

The second half of the evening is an exclusive dedication to the luminary Arturo Sandoval, featuring his magnum opus, “Concerto for Trumpet No. 2.” Sandoval’s versatility shone through as he seamlessly transitioned between trumpet, piano, and vocals, enraptures the audience with not just his musical prowess but also his engaging storytelling. The performance, reminiscent of a bygone Las Vegas era display of the multitude of talents, is enhanced by Sandoval’s charisma and generosity of spirit that will elevate the evening into a transcendent experience of inclusivity.

Completing the evening is Rachmaninoff’s SERGE: Themes from Piano Concerto No. 2, which transports listeners through a poignant musical journey. With emotive piano phrases supported by lush orchestration, the Adagio unveils a profound emotional landscape. A delicate balance of restraint and passion characterizes this movement, drawing the audience into a world of profound introspection.


Audiences will enjoy the Classical Series fun and elegant evening surrounded by the Terrace Theater’s dazzling fountains and fire pits, live ensemble in the lobby, 6:30 PM Pre-Concert Talk to gain greater knowledge regarding the evening programming, and the ability to “Sip & Enjoy” in the concert hall.  Doors open at 6PM.


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Bluegrass & Beethoven

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During this adventurous and audacious evening, the audience will feel as if it is traveling through rhythmic habaneras, bluegrass dances, and classical symphonies, covering an expansive landscape of musical and cultural terrain. The program, carefully curated to elicit joy and celebration, invites contemplation on the whimsical delight of bluegrass and the classics playing alongside each other. Indeed, the concert emerges as a testament to the transformative power of music that transcends boundaries and converges diverse traditions into an enjoyable and harmonious event.

This evening includes a curated ensemble of award-winning musical masterpieces, genres, and influences. Commencing the program is Arturo Marquez’s “Danzon No. 2,” a resplendent fusion of Contradance and Cuban habanera steeped in the cultural heritage of Mexico. Marquez, a luminary hailing from a lineage of folk musicians, deftly intertwines traditional Mexican musical forms into this composition that resonates with the rhythmic allure of ballrooms in bustling Mexico City. The composition exudes an infectious energy, captivating the audience with its catchy rhythms and toe-tapping quality. Marquez’s composition unfolds as a vivacious dance, wherein sultry, passionate melodies intermingle seamlessly with an underlying drive, creating an experience that is both easy on the ears and exuberantly invigorating for both performers and listeners alike.

Following this rhythmic odyssey is Michael Torke’s “Sky”, a virtuosic composition tailor-made for the prodigious Tessa Lark. The concerto, a manifestation of Torke’s Pulitzer Prize-winning genius, weaves together the classical prowess of a renowned violinist with the rich heritage of Kentucky’s fiddling tradition. Lark, nominated for a GRAMMY in the Best Classical Instrumental Solo category and recipient Lincoln Center’s prestigious Emerging Artist Awards, effortlessly navigates the intricate complexities of the concerto, seamlessly transitioning between her classical prowess and her roots in bluegrass. Torke’s creation, though challenging, unfolds as a lighthearted, evocative homage to the bluegrass idiom, a musical journey that is both technically demanding and artistically rewarding.

The concert expands into Beethoven’s Symphony No. 1, a composition that resonates with the effervescence of dance. Beethoven, often perceived through the lens of sternness, here reveals a facet of exuberance, challenging the notion that he was solely a solemn maestro. The symphony, imbued with an upbeat character, weaves together a diverse range of influences, mirroring the theme of the entire program.


Audiences will enjoy the Classical Series fun and elegant evening surrounded by the Terrace Theater’s dazzling fountains and fire pits, live ensemble in the lobby, 6:30 PM Pre-Concert Talk to gain greater knowledge regarding the evening programming, and the ability to “Sip & Enjoy” in the concert hall.  Doors open at 6PM.


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Gershwin & Friends

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Embark upon an evening that pays homage to the rich tapestry of American music with an exquisite celebration of diverse musical cultures, influences, identities, and expressive forms where the melodies echo the origins and spirit of America in a harmonious and colorful celebration of past and present.

We open with Coincident Dances, the work from contemporary composer Jessie Montgomery as she channels her profound reflections on the dynamic rhythms of New York City into an innovative musical composition. This piece, a convergence of simultaneous sounds, contrasting times, and diverse cultural ideas, unfolds as a rhythmic masterpiece that elicits an immediate response of understanding and appreciation.

William Grant Still’s Symphony No. 5, “Western Hemisphere” is an opulent composition exuding a late romantic sensibility. Filled with lush and melodic passages, the symphony pulsates with rhythmic vitality, reminiscent of the blue scale. Its cinematic quality carries a positive message of American goodwill and prosperity, exploring the vigorous life-sustaining forces of the hemisphere and focusing on the beauty of nature.

With the timeless genius of George Gershwin, whose signature fusion of jazz and classical music takes center stage, this piano concerto was written a year after “Rhapsody in Blue,” promising an even more ambitious and expansive musical journey. This concerto, performed by the extraordinary pianist Clayton Stephenson, elevates the evening to unparalleled heights. Stephenson, a trailblazing talent and the first black finalist of the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2022, lends his remarkable artistry to this symphonic spectacle.

The program seamlessly weaves together the threads of American identity, from Montgomery’s contemporary reflections to Still’s lush romanticism and Gershwin’s groundbreaking fusion of genres. Join us on this transcendent journey, where the melodies echo the vibrant spirit of America, past and present, in a harmonious celebration of musical innovation and brilliance.


Audiences will enjoy the Classical Series fun and elegant evening surrounded by the Terrace Theater’s dazzling fountains and fire pits, live ensemble in the lobby, 6:30 PM Pre-Concert Talk to gain greater knowledge regarding the evening programming, and the ability to “Sip & Enjoy” in the concert hall.  Doors open at 6PM.


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A NEW WORLD – Celebrating Long Beach Symphony’s 90th Anniversary!

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Welcome to this celebratory affair as we open the 2024-2025 Season and 90th anniversary of Long Beach Symphony. Beethoven’s Egmont Overture opens our 90th Anniversary Season which was the first piece the Symphony performed in 1934. It will be followed by the West Coast Premiere of Anna Clyne’s Quarter Days and Symphony No. 9 “From the New World” (Dvořák).

Egmont Overture, Op. 84, the jubilant opus that inaugurated the Long Beach Symphony in 1934, encapsulates the quintessence of Beethoven’s artistry. Revered as the “Victory Symphony,” its power and thunderous beginning emanates with an almost excessive virtuosic jubilation. Beethoven had a deeply rooted belief in humanistic freedom. He was drawn to protagonists who fought against repressive forces. In this emotional overture – which is part of incidental music composed to accompany Goethe’s play “Egmont” – he depicts the struggle of count Egmont fighting for freedom and liberty. From thunderous chords of oppression to fanfares of victory, with its dramatic turn from tragedy into triumph, Beethoven unleashes some of his most powerful music. This overture showcases the power and virtuosity of music and represents the philosophical and musical ideals of this orchestra.

Cultivating new beginnings, we present the West Coast Premiere of “Quarter Days, a new concerto for solo string quartet and orchestra by the distinguished British violinist, composer, and Emmy nominee Anna Clyne. Her cello concerto DANCE – performed by the Long Beach Symphony in 2022 – has garnered over 10 million plays on Spotify. We are proud to be part of the consortium that commissioned “Quarter Days”. This concerto will be a great opportunity to showcase the principal string players of the orchestra as soloists. Quarter Days is a reflection on the passing of time – both within a minute, a day, and through the seasons of the year. Anna Clyne’s music has an instant appeal – full of lyricism, colors, and emotion.

The evening concludes with Antonin Dvořák’s Ninth Symphony “From the New World”, composed during Antonin Dvořák’s early days in the United States. It is not only one of quintessential symphonies of the entire orchestral repertoire, but it also stands as a testament to his encouragement of American composers to cultivate a national identity in their music. This tour-de-force for the orchestra includes influences of Native-American melodies, spirituals – and of course his indomitable “Czech spirit.” The performance of the “New World” Symphony will be preceded by a presentation of “Goin’ Home”, a song based on the famous melody of the second movement, with a text by William Arms Fisher.

 


Audiences will enjoy the Classical Series fun and elegant evening surrounded by the Terrace Theater’s dazzling fountains and fire pits, live ensemble in the lobby, 6:30 PM Pre-Concert Talk to gain greater knowledge regarding the evening programming, and the ability to “Sip & Enjoy” in the concert hall.  Doors open at 6PM.


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Electric Avenue: 80’s MTV Dance Party

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The ultimate 80’s celebration will have you singing and dancing to music by Kenny Loggins, Tears for Fears, the Police, The Cars, George Michael, Soft Cell, Simple Minds, Bryan Adams, Queen, Lionel Richie, Phil Collins, and Bruce Springsteen.

Doors open at 6:00pm for indoor picnicking. Bring your baskets with food, sweets, libations, and even costumes and table decorations. You may also pre-order catering from these pre-approved vendors.

 


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Sinatra, Elvis, and MORE! with Matt Mauser

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Ol’ Blue Eyes’ greatest hits combined with songs we all know by Elvis Presley, Tom Jones and more! Sing along to the Chairman of the Board’s Fly Me to the Moon, The Lady is a Tramp, The Best is Yet to Come, the Theme from New York, New York, along with songs made famous by Ricky Martin, Bill Withers, Bobby Darin and the Bee Gees!

Doors open at 6:00pm for indoor picnicking. Bring your baskets with food, sweets, libations, and even costumes and table decorations. You may also pre-order catering from these pre-approved vendors.

 


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Women of Rock

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Dance the night away to the music of Tina Turner, Pat Benatar, Heart, Carole King, Janis Joplin, Holly Knight, Aretha Franklin, and Minnie Riperton.  Women Rock honors powerful female singers and songwriters who changed Pop and Rock & Roll forever.  Featured songs include I Feel the Earth Move, What’s Love Got to Do With it, Proud Mary, Hit Me With Your Best Shot, Freeway of Love, and You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman.

Doors open at 6:00pm for indoor picnicking. Bring your baskets with food, sweets, libations, and even costumes and table decorations. You may also pre-order catering from these pre-approved vendors.

 


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Kings of Soul

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Honoring the true “Kings” of classic soul, celebrate the music of legendary artists Marvin Gaye, Jackie Wilson, James Brown, Otis Redding, The Temptations, Al Green, Barry White, Smokey Robinson and Curtis Mayfield. Sing along to soul’s greatest hits, such as Soul Man, Shop Around, Get Ready, Try a Little Tenderness, Stand By Me, Move On Up and Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher.

Doors open at 6:00pm for indoor picnicking. Bring your baskets with food, sweets, libations, and even costumes and table decorations. You may also pre-order catering from these pre-approved vendors.

 


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