Music Director Grant Llewellyn and the North Carolina Symphony salutes the end of summer and kicks off the orchestra's 80th Anniversary Season with "Pops in the City," a free outdoor concert in the heart of downtown Raleigh. The performance, held in Raleigh Amphitheater tonight, Sept. 9 at 7:30 p.m., honors the orchestra's 80 years of service to the people of North Carolina with an energetic concert program inspired by Symphony milestones.
The evening recognizes the orchestra's tradition of performing American works, including Percy Grainger's Spoon River, a favorite in the Symphony's earliest days. Also featured in the performance is a movement from Terry Mizesko's Sketches from Pinehurst, a major commission and world premiere by the Symphony in 2005 that honored the U.S. Open held at the famous North Carolina golf resort. Mizesko, a native of Morehead City, is also the orchestra's bass trombonist.
Raleigh concertgoers will delight in Johann Strauss's irresistible Accelerations Waltz, a work often featured on the Symphony's Education Concerts. Those free performances, the cornerstone of one of the most extensive education programs of any U.S. orchestra, have been an unforgettable introduction to live classical music for countless North Carolina schoolchildren over the past 80 years.
Also included is music by American composers Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland and Scott Joplin, as well as the Largo and Molto vivace movements from Antonín Dvo?ák's "New World" Symphony. The Symphony's performance of the immensely popular "New World" Symphony in February 2012 was hailed as an "unforgettable" presentation by "THE cultural treasure of our state," in Classical Voice North Carolina.