LASALLE — Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra Board President Andrea Kowalski welcomes a new conductor.
After a year-long search, Dr. Daniel Sommerville was chosen from a field of talented conductors to be the 18th music director and conductor for the IVSO’s 70th anniversary season. He has an exciting season planned, which includes music from past decades and special soloists Chicago Symphony Orchestra trumpeter John Hagstrom and Rachel Barton Pine, who also performed for IVSO’s 50th- and 60th-season celebrations. Plus The Nutcracker ballet in December.
The orchestra’s first season was 1949–1950. Dr. Sommerville will strive to continue to fulfill the IVSO’s mission: to entertain and inspire the community by performing live orchestral music. He has programmed the following concerts for the upcoming season:
• Showtime! — Saturday, Sept. 28, at 7 p.m. at Illinois Valley Community College Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre. The concert will feature guest artist Jennie Judd, soprano, on music from Broadway, with a special tribute to Marvin Hamlisch, plus music by Leonard Bernstein, Richard Rogers, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter and more.
• New Beginnings — Sunday, Nov. 3, at 3 p.m. at LaSalle-Peru High School Matthiessen Auditorium. The concert will feature John Hagstrom, trumpeter of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, on Arutiunian’s Trumpet Concerto, Dvorák’s New World Symphony, and music by Grieg and Kabalevsky.
• The Nutcracker — Saturday, Dec. 14, at 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 15, at 3 p.m. at LaSalle-Peru High School Matthiessen Auditorium. The ever popular, fully-staged performance of Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet with dancers from Dance Center (LaSalle), Gray’s School of Dance (Ottawa) and Ottawa Dance Academy, and Snowflake Chorus by the Latin Mass Choir of the Illinois Valley and voice students of Kori Suarez. Priority reserved seating for IVSO season subscribers.
• Far-Off Places — Sunday, March 8, 2020, at 3 p.m. at Ottawa High School Auditorium. The concert will feature winners of the IVSO 2020 Young Performers Competition and evocative pieces by Mendelssohn (The Hebrides), Marquez (Danzon No. 2), Saint-Saëns (Donse Bacchanale), Borodin (In the Steppes of Central Asia) and Khachaturian (Gayane).
• 70th anniversary celebration — Saturday, May 2, at 7 p.m. at Illinois Valley Community College Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre. The concert will feature Rachael Barton Pine on Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto. Other pieces by Brahms, Debussy and Dukas from past anniversary concerts will be performed, as well as Copeland’s suite from The Tender Land.
The purchase of an orchestra subscription grants admission to all five season concerts, including access to priority reserved seating for “The Nutcracker.” Subscribers save 50 percent off the price of five individual admissions at $20 each.
Each $50 subscription includes five tickets, four of which may be used at any of the September, November, March or May concerts — one at each concert or up to four admissions for any one concert. The flex feature allows subscribers to get the full value of their subscription even if they cannot attend all the concerts.
Season tickets may be ordered by credit card at ivso.org or purchased at the September concert. Students in grades K–12 will be admitted free to all concerts but “The Nutcracker.” Tickets for college students with ID are $5. December Nutcracker reserved seats for all children and youths through college with ID are $5.