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Special Events

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Upcoming Performances

Symphonic Strings
Saturday 7:00 pm July 26, 2014

Maestro Peter Jaffee leads Symphonic Strings – popular classical works written for strings only, performed by the musicians of Symphony Silicon Valley. Composers will range from Tchaikovsky and Dvorak to Takemitsu, Grieg and Copland.

  • Holberg Suite Prelude (Grieg)
  • Serenade for Strings in E major (Dvorák)
  • Eine kleine Nachtmusik (Mozart)
  • Romanian Folk Dances (Bartók)
  • Serenade for Strings in E minor (Elgar)
  • Waltz (Takemitsu)
  • Boisterous Bouree (Britten)
  • Serenade for Strings in C (Tchaikovsky)

Concert takes place at San Jose State University's iconic Tower Lawn
(located behind the MLK Library at 4th and San Fernando)

Conductor: Peter Jaffe
About Peter Jaffe

Peter Jaffe


Opera Pops
Sunday 5:30 pm July 27, 2014

Presented with Opera San Jose. Symphony Silicon Valley and Opera San Jose collaborate on an evening of vocal pyrotechnics. Maestro Peter Jaffee conducts an evening of arias, songs and comic turns from opera and operettas. Free Ice Cream Social, provided by Treat Ice Cream of San Jose.

  • Die Fledermaus Overture (Strauss)
  • The Magic Flute: Papageno! Papagena! (Mozart)
  • The Magic Flute: Queen of the Night (Mozart)
  • The Marriage of Figaro: La vendetta (Mozart)
  • Rigoletto: Bella figlia dell'amore (Verdi)
  • The Marriage of Figaro Overture (Mozart)
  • Lakmé Flower Duet (Delibes)
  • The Barber of Seville: Largo al factotum (Rossini)
  • La Bohème: Quando m'en vo' (Puccini)
  • Fiddler on the Roof: If I Were a Rich Man (Bock)
  • Porgy and Bess: Summertime (Gershwin)
  • Rigoletto: La donna è mobile (Verdi)
  • Carmen: Votre toast (Bizet)

Concert takes place at San Jose State University's iconic Tower Lawn
(located behind the MLK Library at 4th and San Fernando)

Conductor: Peter Jaffe
Soloist(s): Opera San Jose
Kirk Dougherty, Tenor
Silas Elash, Bass
Matthew Hanscom, Baritone
Isabella Ivy, Soprano
Chloe Smart, Soprano
About Peter Jaffe
About Opera San Jose
About Kirk Dougherty
About Silas Elash
About Matthew Hanscom
About Isabella Ivy
About Chloe Smart



Mariachi Sol de México
Friday 7:00 pm August 1, 2014

Presented with Viva Fest. Jose Hernandez leads world-famous Mariachi Sol de Mexico and guests from Viva Fest in a program showing off these virtuoso musicians’ Mexican flair and some special classical arrangements.

Concert takes place at San Jose State University's iconic Tower Lawn
(located behind the MLK Library at 4th and San Fernando)

Soloist(s): Mariachi Sol de Mexico
About Mariachi Sol de Mexico



Classical Mystery Tour
Saturday 7:00 pm August 2, 2014

The stars of Classical Mystery Tour, alums of Broadway’s Beatlemania, return for an evening of the Beatles’ greatest hits, backed by Symphony Silicon Valley.

  • Beatles Medly Overture
  • Got to Get You Into My Life
  • A Hard Day's Night
  • I Saw Her Standing There
  • Yesterday
  • All You Need Is Love
  • Penny Lane
  • Here Comes the Sun
  • Sgt. Pepper/Little Help From My Friends
  • I Am the Walrus
  • Sgt. Pepper Reprise
  • A Day In the Life
  • You've Got to Hide Your Love Away
  • Yellow Submarine
  • Come Together
  • While My Guitar Gently Weeps
  • The Long and Winding Road
  • Live and Let Die
  • Give Peace a Chance
  • Imagine
  • Golden Slumbers

Concert takes place at San Jose State University's iconic Tower Lawn
(located behind the MLK Library at 4th and San Fernando)

Soloist(s): Classical Mystery Tour
About Classical Mystery Tour



Cole Porter Songbook
Sunday 5:30 pm August 3, 2014

Target Summer Pops closes with the music of Cole Porter from All of You to You’re the Top. Led by Maestro Larry Blank, the Symphony is joined by Broadway talents Lisa Vroman, David Burnham, and Christina Saffran.

Free Ice Cream Social with Treat Ice Cream of San Jose.

Concert takes place at San Jose State University's iconic Tower Lawn
(located behind the MLK Library at 4th and San Fernando)

Conductor: Larry Blank
Soloist(s): Lisa Vroman
David Burnham
Christina Saffran
About Larry Blank
About Lisa Vroman
About David Burnham
About Christina Saffran

Larry Blank


The Music of Led Zeppelin
Saturday 8:00 pm September 20, 2014

For one night only, the legendary songs of Led Zeppelin, accompanied by Symphony Silicon Valley, performs at the City National Civic! Bridging the gulf between rock n’ roll and classical music, Silicon Valley Symphony performs The Music of Led Zeppelin at City National Civic of San Jose on Saturday, September 20 at 8:00 PM. Amplified by a full rock band and accompanied by singer Randy Jackson’s screaming vocals, creator Brent Havens guest conducts the ensemble as they capture Led Zeppelin’s “sheer blast and power,” riff for riff while churning out new musical colors.

“My concept for The Music of Led Zeppelin was to take the music as close to the originals as we could and then add some colors to enhance what Zep had done,” says Havens. “The wonderful thing with an orchestra is that you have an entire palette to call upon. The band is reproducing what Led Zeppelin did on the albums, verbatim, and then having an orchestra behind the band gives the music a richness, a whole different feel, a whole different sense of power.”

Delivering a note-for-note interpretation, vocalist Randy Jackson (lead singer of the rock band Zebra), shrieks brilliantly, acting as a window between the audience and reworked material. “The music itself is one thing, but Jackson more than captures the spirit of legendary Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant,” says Havens.

Why the music of Led Zeppelin? Havens felt Led Zeppelin’s intricate rhythm patterns and unusual progressions contained within straight-forward rock n’ roll makes them an ideal choice for scoring.

“I was quite impressed with the complexity of the rhythms,” says Havens. “I’ve asked myself if they actually sat down and said, ‘alright we need a three-eight bar here, or we need to go from four-four to seven-eight and back…’ I don’t think so. I think they just banged it out and it worked and it felt good.”

The 2-plus hour concert features 18 Zeppelin tunes, including Stairway to Heaven, Heartbreaker, Black Dog and Immigrant Song.

“On Immigrant Song I have the violins doing that ‘Ah-ah-ah part,’ up an octave from Jackson, and the French Horns are doing it with him in the same register,” says Havens. “Then we have the brass kickin’ in the back, doing the accents. It rips.”

The symphonic rock hybrid has met with approval on both sides of the podium.

“When we first came on stage, the audience gave us polite, almost classical applause,” says Havens. “Then we hit the first note and they realized it was a rock show.”

Classical musicians also enjoy the change of pace; “In one concert, during Stairway to Heaven, the entire string section pulled out Bic lighters!” laughs Havens.



Carols in the California
Saturday 7:00 pm December 13, 2014

Conductor: Elena Sharkova
Soloist(s): Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale
About Elena Sharkova
About Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale

Elena Sharkova


Wishing You A Musical New Year!
Wednesday December 31, 2014

The time is short--but your generosity can still make a difference to you AND benefit our community. Your fully tax-deductible donation to the Symphony will ...

...underwrite dynamic, engaging concerts in the spectacular California Theatre...bring 17,500 elementary school children to dozens of ArtSPARK educational performances this school year...provide outdoor summer pops concerts, family-friendly and free, for 22,000 listeners of all ages...and much, much more.

The outstanding musicians of our Symphony family offer joy and discovery to listeners throughout the year, thanks to investments like yours. As you make your final year-end gifts, please include a contribution to Symphony Silicon Valley and its many services - artistic, educational and community-building. 

Click here to donate today!  Your generosity is our most critical resource.

Happy New Year,
Andrew Bales, President




The Bells
Saturday 8:00 pm May 9, 2015
Sunday 2:30 pm May 10, 2015

This concert is part of Subscription Series A, B, C, & D.

Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale figures throughout our May program, all under Maestro Vajda’s brilliant leadership. Local composer Pablo Furman’s premiere introduces the ‘bell’ motif with the choral voices. Debussy’s Nocturnes treats women’s voices as instruments, blending them with the orchestra to evoke the shifting sea.  Edgar Allan Poe’s poem The Bells, which evokes changing bell-tones using the melody of words, inspired Rachmaninoff’s brilliant adaptation - a choral symphony that was his favorite of all his works.

Conductor: Gregory Vajda
Soloist(s): Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale
  • Pablo Furman: Overture for Orchestra and Choir (World Premiere)

  • Claude Debussy: Nocturnes

  • Sergei Rachmaninoff: The Bells

About Gregory Vajda
About Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale

Gregory Vajda


Elgar & Schumann
Saturday 8:00 pm June 6, 2015
Sunday 2:30 pm June 7, 2015

This concert is part of Subscription Series A, B, E, & F.

In our final program of the season, cellist Julian Schwarz, superstar-in-the-making, makes his first appearance with Symphony Silicon Valley performing Elgar’s great concerto. This follows the return of the Chorale and orchestra in Vaughan Williams elegiac Serenade to Music; and the evening is capped by Schumann’s magnificent, almost euphoric Rhenish Symphony. English maestro William Boughton will bring the year to a brilliant close.

Conductor: William Boughton
Soloist(s): Julian Schwarz, Cello
Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale
  • Ralph Vaughan Williams: Serenade to Music

  • Edward Elgar: Cello Concerto in E minor, Op. 85

  • Robert Schumann: Symphony No. 3 “Rhenish

About William Boughton
About Julian Schwarz
About Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale

William Boughton



© 2014 Symphony Silicon Valley
P.O. Box 790, San Jose, CA 95106-0790
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