2008 - 2009 Season
2008 - 2009 Season

Classics Series
Chorale Season

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Dances at an Opening
Saturday 8:00 pm September 27, 2008
Sunday 2:30 pm September 28, 2008
An irresistible sampling of dance music from three 20th century masters. Prokofiev's dramatic Romeo & Juliet, one of the most expressive of all ballet scores, sweeps us from the pageantry and menace of two warring families to the passion and heartbreak of young lovers.  We begin with dances from Ginastera's high-spirited ballet about gauchos' life on the Argentine pampas. Duke Ellington's jazz-infused suite follows, drawn from his ballet for the great dancer/choreographer Alvin Ailey. Leslie Dunner, Music Director of Joffrey Ballet, makes his third appearance with the Symphony.

Conductor: Leslie B. Dunner
  • Alberto Ginastera:    Four Dances from Estancia 
  • Duke Ellington: The River Suite
  • Serge Prokofiev: Suite from Romeo & Juliet

Program Notes
About Leslie B. Dunner

Leslie B. Dunner


Mendelssohn & Beethoven
Thursday 7:30 pm October 16, 2008
Saturday 8:00 pm October 18, 2008
Sunday 2:30 pm October 19, 2008
Associate Concertmaster Christina Mok performs Mendelssohn's supremely demanding Violin Concerto, the melody-filled centerpiece of a program led by Maestro George Cleve.  Cleve opens with Beethoven's 1st Symphony, written at the peak of the composer's youthful classicism and instantly hailed as a masterpiece; and concludes with Debussy's brilliant, rule-breaking invocation to all the colors and moods of the sea.

Conductor: George Cleve
Soloist(s): Christina Mok, violin
  • Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 1 in C major
  • Felix Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto in E minor
  • Claude Debussy:  La Mer
Program Notes
About George Cleve
About Christina Mok

George Cleve


Mozart & Tchaikovsky
Saturday 8:00 pm December 6, 2008
Sunday 2:30 pm December 7, 2008
Note This Program Change and the Addition of 2 Works:
Mozart loved the clarinet for its richly expressive, near-vocal quality; and although he wrote only one concerto for the instrument, it is a masterpiece.  His melody-filled Concerto 622, the last major work of his life. will be performed by Symphony principal Michael Corner. After the intermission comes Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4, a "19th century Russian music drama to rival the great literary dramas of Pushkin and Tolstoy;"-- and a familiar favorite.  Maestro Polivnick opens with von Suppé's charming Pique Dame Overture. 

Conductor: Paul Polivnick
Soloist(s): Michael Corner, clarinet
  • Franz von Suppé: Pique Dame Overture minor
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Clarinet Concerto No. 622 
  • Piotr Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4 in F minor
Program Notes
About Paul Polivnick
About Michael Corner

Paul Polivnick


CAROLS IN THE CALIFORNIA with Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale
Sunday 7:30 pm December 7, 2008
The Chorale presents a festive program of holiday favorites. Enjoy traditional carols, an audience sing-along, music from the mighty Wurlitzer organ, and St. Francis in the Americas - A Caribbean Mass accompanied by steel drums and percussion. Celebrate the holidays with family and friends in the gilded California Theatre. 

Conductor: Elena Sharkova
Soloist(s): David Hegarty, Organ
About Elena Sharkova

Elena Sharkova


A Nakamatsu Premiere
Thursday 7:30 pm January 15, 2009
Saturday 8:00 pm January 17, 2009
Sunday 2:30 pm January 18, 2009
Maestro Polivnick returns for the premiere of the first piano concerto to be commissioned expressly for international star and local favorite Jon Nakamatsu, written by world-music master David Amram.  The concert begins with Symphony No. 95, one of the twelve extraordinary 'London' symphonies that capped Haydn's career and helped change how music was heard.  To conclude, a huge orchestra performs Respighi's spectacular musical panorama of Roman public celebrations across the ages, from the Circus of classical Rome to the barrel-organs and barkers of Respighi's own day.

Conductor: Paul Polivnick
Soloist(s): Jon Nakamatsu, piano
Featured Artist(s): World Premiere Concerto commissioned by William and Marie Bianco
  • Franz Joseph Haydn: Symphony No. 95 in C minor
  • David Amram: Piano Concerto No. 1
  • Ottorino Respighi: Feste romane
Program Notes
About Paul Polivnick
About Jon Nakamatsu

Paul Polivnick


The Organ & the Great C
Saturday 8:00 pm March 14, 2009
Sunday 2:30 pm March 15, 2009
A double Symphony debut. The California Theatre organ's commanding classical range is shown off by internationally acclaimed organist Jonas Nordwall in a powerful work by French virtuoso Guilmant.  We also introduce rising young conductor Paul Haas, praised for his 'fiery brilliance' and 'bold, muscular, go-for-broke conducting,' to lead Schubert's magnificent 9th Symphony, the 'Great' C Major. The concert opens with Barber's haunting Adagio for Strings, a favorite ever since its premiere by radio broadcast in 1938.  

Conductor: Paul Haas
Soloist(s): Jonas Nordwall, Organ
  • Samuel Barber: Adagio for Strings
  • Felix Alexandre Guilmant: Organ Symphony No. 1
  • Franz Schubert: Symphony No. 9 - the Great C Major 
Program Notes
About Paul Haas
About Jonas Nordwall

Paul Haas


FAURE'S REQUIEM with Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale
Sunday 7:30 pm March 15, 2009
Led by Vance George, one of the most celebrates choral conductors of our time, the Chorale will perform Fauré's warm, richly colored Requiem.  The Chorale will be accompanied by members of Symphony Silicon Valley and nationally renowned organist Jonas Nordwall, often heard on the PBS series "Pipe Dreams." Additional works will be added to this program. 

Conductor: Vance George
Soloist(s): Jonas Nordwall, Organ
Program Notes
About Vance George
About Jonas Nordwall

Vance George


Brahms & Dvorak
Thursday 7:30 pm March 26, 2009
Saturday 8:00 pm March 28, 2009
Sunday 2:30 pm March 29, 2009
A celebrated Brahms interpreter, George Cleve leads prize-winning Korean violinist Ju-Young Baek in her third appearance with Symphony Silicon Valley, performing the concerto critics call "the most sublime essay for violin and orchestra ever written." The concert begins in a jubilant mood with our second nod to Italian high spirits: Berlioz' lively and lyrical Le carnaval romain. Maestro Cleve then turns to another giant: Dvorak's triumphant Symphony No. 9 - From The New World, a thoroughly European work that remains the best loved symphony ever composed in America.

Conductor: George Cleve
Soloist(s): Ju-Young Baek, violin
  • Hector Berlioz: Le carnaval romain
  • Johannes Brahms: Violin Concerto in D
  • Antonin Dvorak: Symphony No. 9 - From The New World
Program Notes
About George Cleve
About Ju-Young Baek

George Cleve


Spring Symphonies
Thursday 7:30 pm May 7, 2009
Saturday 8:00 pm May 9, 2009
Sunday 2:30 pm May 10, 2009
Shostakovich's quick-fire, sunny-tempered piano concerto is performed by the dazzling Jon Kimura Parker, who brings "gargantuan technique, awesome timing, oceanic depth, volcanic fire, and more fun than the whole Marx Brother's catalog" to his Symphony debut. Audiences do not 'so much erupt as spontaneously explode' for this pianist; we are in for a treat. Returning conductor Gregory Vajda welcomes Spring with Shostakovich's popular 9th Symphony, called by the composer himself "a merry little piece." Beethoven's buoyant 4th Symphony concludes our tribute to the season. 

Conductor: Gregory Vajda
Soloist(s): Jon Kimura Parker, piano
  • Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No. 9 in E-flat major
  • Dmitri Shostakovich: Piano Concerto No. 1 in C minor
  • Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No. 4 in B-flat major
Program Notes
About Gregory Vajda
About Jon Kimura Parker

Gregory Vajda


Lord Nelson Mass
Saturday 8:00 pm June 6, 2009
Sunday 2:30 pm June 7, 2009
A perfect match between conductor and concert program.  Eminent British maestra Jane Glover is a much recorded orchestral, opera and choral conductor with a special love for Mozart and Haydn. Under her baton, the orchestra, soloists and Symphony Chorale join forces in Haydn's glorious Lord Nelson Mass, written during the turmoil of the Napoleonic wars and hailed as Haydn's "greatest single composition." Glover completes the program with Prokofiev's Classical Symphony, a salute to the Haydn tradition, and Serenade, Tchaikovsky's deeply-felt homage to Mozart, which he called 'a piece from the heart.'

Conductor: Jane Glover
Featured Artist(s): Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale (Elena Sharkova – director)
  • Serge Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1 Classical Symphony
  • Piotr Tchaikovsky: Serenade for Strings
  • Franz Joseph Haydn: Lord Nelson Mass
Program Notes
About Jane Glover

Jane Glover



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325 South First Street, San Jose, CA 95113
Phone or Fax: (408) 286-2600

Supported, in part, by a Cultural Affairs grant from the City of San José