Symphony News

[Newspress] Kids enjoy Santa Barbara Symphony

February 08, 2013

By Jordan Ecarma, News-Press staff write

More than 2,500 fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders crowded the Granada Theatre on Thursday morning to hear performances of the Santa Barbara Symphony’s Concert for Young People.

“It’s completely exciting to welcome them and see the entire house full of students,” said Amy Bassett, director of education and community development with the Santa Barbara Symphony. “You have students from all over Santa Barbara County here.”

The Santa Barbara Symphony has presented the Concerts for Young People series, which introduces children to classical music, for more than 50 years.

Cinthia Avila, 10, and Michelle Alba, 9, didn’t mind missing math class to attend their first concert at the Granada Theatre.

“I’m excited,” Cinthia told the News-Press.


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[Casa Magazine] Together again, at last!

February 08, 2013

By Daniel Kepl, Casa Magazine

It’s been awhile since the Santa Barbara Symphony and State Street Ballet dated. The corsage fro their first foray together in 2011 was Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring. This Saturday and Sunday’s boutonniere will be Igor Stravinsky’s The Firebird. It’s only the second date, but the two organizations are settling into a productive relationship. New York City-based choreographer William Soleau is in charge of the dance card again, and conductor Nir Kabaretti, the party favors.

Bound to be a sell-out, the happy occasion is part of the Symphony’s regular subscription series, 8pm on Saturday, and 3pm on Sunday, in the Granada Theatre. Brahms’ Symphony No. 3 will be the focal point of the first half of the program, which will also include Debussy’s Danses Sacree et Profane, with harp soloist Michelle Temple. After intermission, State Street Ballet will occupy the stage, while the Symphony adjourns to the orchestra pit, for the world premiere of Soleau’s original choreography to Firebird.


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[Scene Magazine] A Sacred, Profane and Firebird-ish Encounter

February 08, 2013

Santa Barbara Symphony principal harpist Michelle Temple is featured as a soloist this weekend on Debussy’s ‘Sacred and Profane Dances’

By Josef Woodard, New-Press Correspondent

In the scheme of the current, 60th annual concert season of the Santa Barbara Symphony, this weekend’s program arrives with special fanfare. Music meets dance, and different arts organizations collude, when the Symphony meets State Street Ballet for a newly-choreographed production of one of Stravinsky’s great ballets, “The Firebird.” This will be an encore collaboration, after a music-dance partnership on the theme of Copland’s “Appalachian Spring” three years ago.

But in another way, for the opening piece of the concert, the weekend’s program turns a special spotlight inward to the orchestra’s own musical ranks. Soloist-wise, the Symphony’s principle harpist Michelle Temple will take center stage to play the classic Debussy harp piece “Sacred and Profane Dances,” also heard last fall via Camerata Pacifica, with harp soloist Bridget Kibbey. Ms. Temple has long been principle harpist with the Santa Barbara Symphony as well as the Pacific Symphony, and has worked with many other classical music groups around Southern California, along with doing studio work.

We checked in with Ms. Temple recently to discuss her spotlight moment, and other relevant matters.

News-Press: The upcoming Santa Barbara Symphony concert is a special program, with the “The Firebird” music and dance collaboration as the centerpiece. Is there a sense within the orchestra’s ranks that this concert is a special moment on the season schedule?


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[Scene Magazine] Taming ‘The Firebird’

February 08, 2013

Esteemed choreographer William Soleau premieres his original choreography for Igor Stravinsky’s eminent ballet ‘The Firebird’

By Joe Hansen, News-Press Correspondent

Today it’s difficult to imagine the world of ballet without Igor Stravinsky.

But prior to the evening of June 25, 1910, Stravinsky was just an unknown 27-year-old composer. That was before “The Firebird.”

The nearly hour-long ballet famously propelled Stravinsky to renown — he would pen “Petrushka” and the Earth-shattering “Rite of Spring” in the next two years — and Stravinsky’s musical genius became a boon for a long list of gifted choreographers who left their stamp on the ballet, beginning with the original choreographer Michel Fokine.


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[Santa Barbara Seasons] SB Symphony and State Street Ballet Present Stravinsky’s Firebird

February 07, 2013

By Chelsea Joy, Santa Barbara Seasons

Even the most expensive pair of headphones will never fully capture the largest crescendo or the most delicate diminuendo— there’s simply nothing quite like witnessing a live production of great classical music, especially with Santa Barbara Symphony. On Saturday and Sunday, February 9 and 10, Santa Barbara Symphony teams up with State Street Ballet for a production of Igor Stravinsky’s Firebird, the orchestral masterpiece which sky-rocketed Stravinsky to international fame more than 100 years ago, at the Granada Theatre. The concert will feature the world premiere of William Soleau’s Firebird choreography under the direction of Rodney Gustafson, and a grand moment for harpist Michelle Temple as she opens with Debussy’s Sacred and Profane Dances for solo harp and string orchestra. The Symphony will follow with Brahms’ memorable Third Symphony, with Firebird as the powerful finale.These concerts mark the 60th Anniversary of Santa Barbara Symphony.

"We reunite with the magnificent talents of the State Street Ballet to bring to life the work that launched Stravinsky’s career,” says Nir Kabaretti, the Symphony’s music and artistic director. “We welcome Santa Barbara to experience the power of dance set to a live orchestra."


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KDB 93.7FM interview with choreographer William Soleau

February 07, 2013