After getting back in the hall earlier this year, Pacific Symphony is ready to invite audiences in. The orchestra has spent 2021, so far, recording programs to stream at its home venue, the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. Now, the Symphony is one of the first ensembles in the country to announce a 2021–2022 season — live and in person, like any other year.
The programming is likewise back to normal: star soloists, big symphonies, and annual events. Opening weekend, Sept. 30 – Oct. 2, has Emanuel Ax playing Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 17; also on the program, Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony and a Pacific Symphony premiere, Wayne Oquin’s Tower Ascending.
Oquin’s piece was originally set for fall 2020, and a good part of Pacific Symphony’s upcoming season adapts what had to be postponed in 2020 and 2021. A major commission — Fiat Lux, by Scottish composer James MacMillan — now gets its world premiere Feb. 17–19, 2022, from the orchestra joined by Pacific Chorale. Another postponed collaboration — “The Mozart Project,” with South Coast Repertory — comes to the stage May 19–21, 2022.
Pacific Symphony continues its semistaged opera tradition in 2022 with three performances of Verdi’s Otello (April 7, 9, and 12), with tenor Carl Tanner in the title role. But Orange County audiences won’t even have to wait that long for opera from the Symphony; the orchestra is preparing another Verdi work, La traviata, for streaming this June.
Pacific Symphony is keeping more annual events on the calendar: Handel’s Messiah in December, its Lunar New Year concert in February, and its Iranian New Year celebration in March. The orchestra is also planning a full pops series from November to June, from Boz Scaggs to Cirque de la Symphonie to Broadway.
There’s plenty of spectacle when it comes to the classical repertoire, too. Pacific Symphony Music Director Carl St. Clair conducts Mahler’s Fourth Symphony (Jan. 6–8, 2022), and Edo de Waart leads Saint-Saëns’s “Organ” Symphony (March 10–12, 2022). The whole season closes with a weekend of Beethoven works — Alexander Romanovsky in the five piano concertos and more (June 9–12, 2022).
For the full season schedule, along with ticket options and information on the orchestra’s reopening policies, visit Pacific Symphony’s website. Tickets also by phone at 714-755-5799.