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The 2017-18 Wheeling Symphony Season: Music Is the Key | News, Sports, Jobs

7:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 21

Andre Raphel, conductor

Scott Coulter, vocalist/host; Jessica Hendy, vocalist; Kellie Rabke, vocalist; John Boswell, vocalist/pianist

The symphony opens its 88th season with an evening of Broadway’s timeless hits, from such musicals as “Wicked,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Annie,” “Jersey Boys,” “The Sound of Music,” “Chicago,” “Cats,” “The Lion King,” “A Chorus Line” and more.

• Russian Masterpieces

7:30 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 12

Stewart Goodyear, piano

Featured composers: Berlioz, Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff

Pianist Stewart Goodyear, proclaimed by the Los Angeles Times as “a phenomenon,” will return to the Wheeling Symphony performing Prokofiev’s inventive and witty Piano Concert No. 3.

The concert opens with the lyrical “Roman Carnival Overture” by Berlioz, and concludes with Rachmaninoff’s melodic Symphony No. 2, one of the composer’s best-known works.

• Bach Double and Mozart

7:30 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 9

Andre Raphel, conductor

Rachel Stegeman, violin; Juan Jaramillo, violin

Featured composers: Stravinsky, Bach, Danielpour and Mozart

Stravinsky’s charming “Pulcinella Suite” begins this all-WSO concert. Stravinsky called this work his “discovery of the past” and “gateway” to future compositions. Bach’s timeless “Double Violin Concerto” highlights the virtuosity of WSO musicians Rachel Stegeman and Juan Jaramillo. Followed by Richard Danielpour’s Adagietto for Strings, a WSO-commission that Danielpour called “an exciting fusion, being written as it is for Wheeling — one of the smallest cities to maintain an orchestra of this caliber.” The concert concludes with Mozart’s final Symphony No. 41 (“Jupiter”) where Mozart demonstrates his sheer brilliance as a composer.

• Holiday Family Fun — Symphony on Ice

7 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 30

Symphony on Ice presented by Main Street Bank at WesBanco Arena features champion professional skaters, the Wheeling and Pittsburgh Figure Skating Clubs along with the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra and local middle and high school choirs.

• Back To Back: The Music of Elton John and Billy Joel

7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 9

Jeans ‘n Classics

Jean Meilleur, vocals; John Regan, piano

The symphony’s 88th season celebrates the piano’s 88 keys with the music of two contemporary piano legends, Elton John and Billy Joel.

Returning guest artists, Jeans ‘n Classics will sing the songs of the piano men, including the hits: “Movin’ Out,” “Always a Woman,” “Philadelphia Freedom,” “Someone Saved My Life Tonight,” “Circle of Life” and “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me,” just to name a few.

• East Meets West

7:30 p.m., Friday, March 16

Andre Raphel, conductor

Jennifer Frautschi, violin

Featured composers: Tan Dun, Beethoven, Rimsky-Korsakov

This program fuses the music and culture of East and West traditions.

Raphel examines the percussive, sweeping rhythm of Tan Dun’s “Symphonic Poem of 3 Notes” and the dazzling orchestration of Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade” inspired by “Arabian Nights.”

Two-time Grammy nominated violinist Jennifer Frautschi will join the symphony performing Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, a dramatic, lyrical showpiece.

• West Virginia premiere of “Appalachian Rhapsody”

7:30 p.m., Friday, April 13

Andre Raphel, conductor

Nate Strasser, piano; Matt Combs, violin; Chris De’Sean Lea, vocals

Television/film composer, songwriter and virtuoso pianist Nate Strasser returns to his roots to perform “Appalachian Rhapsody.” Joining him is violinist and collaborator Matt Combs, a featured performer of the Grand Ole Opry, and vocalist Chris De’Sean Lee, who landed the dual roles of the Marquis de Lafayette and Thomas Jefferson in the Chicago production of “Hamilton.” Chris raps and sings with equal aplomb. This dynamic trio explores music inspired by the West Virginia hills. Nate, Matt, Chris and the orchestra will perform additional compositions that feature piano, jazz and popular music in this homecoming concert.

• Season Finale: Respighi’s “Pines”

7:30 p.m., Friday, May 18

Andre Raphel, conductor

Deborah Selig, soprano

Featured composers: Dvorak, Beethoven, R. Strauss, Respighi

Dvorak’s rousing “Carnival Overture” opens this inspiring season finale. Beethoven’s engaging and powerful Symphony No. 4 returns us to his earlier and most beautiful period. Soprano Deborah Selig joins the symphony for “Five Songs With Orchestra” by Richard Strauss.

The season concludes with a powerful performance of Respighi’s majestic and expressive “Pines of Rome,” painting a musical portrait of scenes around the Eternal City.

The Wheeling Symphony Orchestra also will present its Fourth of July concert tour with stops in Weirton; Canaan Valley; Bridgeport, W.Va.; and winding up at Heritage Port in Wheeling.

The Labor Day Music Under the Stars concert will be held at Oglebay’s Anna Kuchinka Amphitheatre.

For more information, call 304-232-6191 or visit www.wheelingsymphony. com.

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