February 23, 2021
Pacific Symphony is delivering on its promise. Last month, SF Classical Voice reported that the orchestra’s musicians had agreed to a four-year contract, with an eye on getting back in the concert hall to record new performances that would stream online. This week, the Orange County orchestra is inaugurating a new platform, in the Disney and San Francisco Symphony vein — PacificSymphony+.
The first program under the “plus” banner premieres for free this Thursday, Feb. 25, at 7 p.m. PT. It’s music of chamber-orchestra proportions — Richard Strauss’s Serenade for 13 Winds and the finale of Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings. The next week, on March 4, the Pacific Symphony brass play Morten Lauridsen’s O magnum mysterium and Michael Daugherty’s Asclepius, joined in that second work by the percussion section.
“This allows us to be properly socially distanced on stage and assures that everyone is safe,” said Music Director Carl St. Clair. “The musicians and I are gratified to be creating and making music again after such a long period of being unable to play together.”
These first offerings are the start of a series, Symphony Thursdays @ 7, the equivalent of the orchestra’s regular season classics programming. More Thursday performances are in the works — Pulcinella and The Firebird, Ravel’s Mother Goose, a handful of Bach concertos, and more — along with pops, family, and chamber programs. This Saturday, Feb. 27, at 10 a.m. PT, the orchestra streams a free family event, its annual Lantern Festival, marking the end of the Lunar New Year celebrations.
Tune in to Pacific Symphony performances on Facebook and on YouTube. The Thursday programs will stay online for a month after their premieres. More offerings from PacificSymphony+ will be announced as they’re available on the orchestra’s website.