Pacific Symphony Season Launches with St. Clair and Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with Midori



Costa Mesa, California-- Concert first of a year-long celebration honoring Carl St.Clair. Last seen with Pacific Symphony at the grand-opening festivities of the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in 2006, internationally renowned violinist Midori returns to Orange County to celebrate Music Director Carl St.Clair’s 20th anniversary with the orchestra.


The Symphony kicks off the 2009-10 season on Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 24-26, at 8 p.m., with “Midori Plays Tchaikovsky,” featuring the former child prodigy—now a virtuoso—performing one of the world’s most well-known and technically demanding violin works, Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto, accompanied by Frank Ticheli’s colorful soundscape, “Shooting Stars,” and Brahms’ Symphony No. 1. In addition to three performances, the Symphony’s opening weekend also includes a party and dinner honoring St.Clair on Thursday, Sept. 24, beginning at 5 p.m.

Performance-only tickets are $25-$105; for more information or to purchase tickets, call (714) 755-5799 or visit

Prior to Midori’s performance, the program begins with “Shooting Stars,” a short, sparkling overture penned by Ticheli when he was Pacific Symphony’s composer-in-residence; its world-premiere took place in 2003, in honor of the orchestra’s 25th anniversary. Following intermission is Symphony No. 1 by Brahms, whose composition (that took 15 years to write) caused contemporary critic Eduard Hanslick to note: “Seldom, if ever, has the entire musical world awaited a composer’s first symphony with such tense anticipation.”

To balance the two diverse works by Tchaikovsky and Ticheli, St.Clair wanted a meat and potatoes repertoire of the 19th century. St.Clair says listening to his mentor Leonard Bernstein leading the Boston Symphony during a rehearsal of the Brahms First Symphony in August of 1985 was one of the most powerful and moving musical moments he’s ever had.

Midori’s debut began at the age of 11 with the New York Philharmonic more than 25 years ago. She appears with the world’s most prestigious orchestras. In 2009-10 includes tours of the United States, Europe and Asia, and an increase in her already extensive commitment to music education in her capacity as Chair of the Strings Department at University of Southern California’s (USC) Thornton School of Music.


Named a Messenger of Peace by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2007, Midori created a non-profit organization in New York that brings music education programs to thousands of underprivileged children each year. Two other organizations, “Music Sharing,” based in Japan, and “Partners in Performance,” based in the U.S., also bring music closer to the lives of people who may not otherwise have involvement with the arts. Midori’s commitment to community collaboration and outreach extends beyond these organizations to her work with young violinists in master classes all over the world, and to her orchestra residencies program in the U.S.  See previous events





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