Symphony News

Santa Barbara Youth Symphony to Present Free Concert on March 5

March 02, 2017

Ensemble’s second outing of the season will take place at the Lobero Theatre and include works by Sibelius, Kabalevsky, Wolf-Ferrari, and others.

Santa Barbara, CA — The Santa Barbara Youth Symphony, whose accomplished members hail from throughout the region, will present a free concert at the Lobero Theatre on Sunday, March 5. Featuring Sibelius’ Symphony No. 2, theme music from the long-running television series Doctor Who, the first movement of Kabalevsky’s Violin Concerto in C Major, and the overture from Wolf-Ferrari’s Susanna’s Secret, the performance will begin at 4 pm. The Lobero Theatre is located at 33 East Canon Perdido Street in Santa Barbara.

Consisting of some 80 musicians ages 12 to 18 from Santa Barbara and Ventura counties, the Santa Barbara Youth Symphony is the capstone program of the Santa Barbara Symphony’s award-winning Music Education Center, which organizes outreach activities for area children of all ages. The ensemble is led by Music Director Andy Radford, principal bassoonist of the Santa Barbara Symphony, and members are selected through audition. The March 5 performance will feature a solo turn by 16-year-old violinist Francis Pan of Goleta.


Read more »



Acclaimed Violinist Philippe Quint to Perform the ‘Seasons’ of Vivaldi & Piazzolla with SB Symphony

February 24, 2017

Orchestra will perform Vivaldi’s ‘The Four Seasons’ and Piazzolla’s ‘The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires’ in their entirety March 18 & 19. Concerts also will feature Haydn’s thrilling Symphony No. 101.     

Santa Barbara, CA — Russian-born violin virtuoso Philippe Quint – lauded for his “fervidly expressive” playing (San Francisco Chronicle) and “bravura technique” (The Times of London) – will showcase his formidable endurance in performances of Antonio Vivaldi’s timeless The Four Seasons and Astor Piazzolla’s nuevo tango masterpiece The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires with the Santa Barbara Symphony on March 18 and 19. Conducted by Maestro Nir Kabaretti, and including Haydn’s dramatic Symphony No. 101 (“The Clock”), the concerts will take place at 8 pm on Saturday, March 18, and at 3 pm on Sunday, March 19, in Santa Barbara’s Granada Theatre. Tickets are now available.


Read more »



[Independent] Schubert, Copland, and a New Clarinet Concerto on Sunday, February 12

February 17, 2017

This thoroughly satisfying program revealed the Santa Barbara Symphony at its strongest, offering both refined, powerful renditions of two important works from the standard repertoire and a West Coast premiere of a sparkling new concerto for clarinet by composer Jonathan Leshnoff, a favorite of maestro Nir Kabaretti’s. The opener, the Symphony No. 8 in B Minor, D. 759 (“Unfinished”) by Franz Schubert, contains some of the most masterful writing in the history of orchestral composition. Even without a full complement of four movements, Schubert’s “Unfinished” makes a bold and paradoxically complete statement. Kabaretti coaxed a relaxed yet deliberate performance from his musicians, and the second movement, in particular, flowed with an inexorable momentum that showed what Schubert was capable of adding to the legacy of Beethoven.


Read more »



[Voice Magazine] Nikkudim: Points of Light Clarinet Concerto

February 10, 2017

A musical narrative never before heard on the west coast will be soulfully breathed into a solo clarinet and full orchestra when the Santa Barbara Symphony performs the West Coast Premiere of American composer Jonathan Leshnoff's new Clarinet Concerto, Nikkudim, with their own Principal Clarinet Donald Foster as soloist. The concert pair will take place on Saturday, February 11th at 8pm and Sunday, February 12th at 3pm in the Granada Theatre.

Don Foster has been the Principal Clarinet  with the Santa Barbara Symphony for 19 years, and has performed his share of the standard concerto for the instrument with our orchestra and the Pasadena Symphony, where he also serves as Principal. But it's rare to have the opportunity to perform the West Coast premiere of a major new work for clarinet. It is a co-commission with the Philadelphia Orchestra, which gave the world premiere on April 14, 2016 with that orchestra's Principal Clarinet Ricardo Morales as soloist.


Read more »



[Scene Magazine] Giving the Clarinet Some Orchestral Love

February 10, 2017

SB Symphony Premieres Clarinet Concerto By Young Composer Jonathan Leshnoff

When last it convened, two weeks back, the Santa Barbara Symphony was busy entertaining an all-ages crowd to the tune and classic visuals of Disney’s “Fantasia,” with its idealistic blend of animation and classical music jukebox hit parade. This weekend’s model of a program is of another ilk entirely, a program in which the Austrian-American symphonic imprint of Schubert’s “Unfinished” Symphony and Aaron Copland’s Symphony No. 3 play second fiddle, in a sense, to the main event of the package—the West Coast Premiere of noted and notably lyrical composer Jonathan Leshnoff’s new Clarinet Concerto.

From an organizational perspective, which casts positive light on our orchestra, the new piece was made possible by a co-commission from the Santa Barbara Symphony and one of America’s, and the world’s, great ensembles, the Philadelphia Orchestra. The symphony’s own considerable principal clarinetist, Donald Foster—no stranger to the soloist spotlight at the Granada Theatre—will do the soloist honors for the new Leshnoff work.


Read more »



Santa Barbara Symphony to Premiere Leshnoff Clarinet Concerto for West Coast

January 31, 2017

Work was co-commissioned by the renowned Philadelphia Orchestra. Concerts also will feature Schubert’s cherished ‘Unfinished’ Symphonyand Copland’s monumental Symphony No. 3.

Santa Barbara, CA — The Santa Barbara Symphony, under the baton of Maestro Nir Kabaretti, will present the West Coast premiere of acclaimed composer Jonathan Leshnoff’s Clarinet Concerto – a work co-commissioned by the renowned Philadelphia Orchestra – at the Granada Theatre on Saturday, February 11. Featuring Santa Barbara Symphony Principal Clarinetist Donald Foster, the performance will take place at 8 pm, followed by an encore concert at 3 pm on Sunday, February 12. Tickets are now available.

The program also will include Schubert’s beloved “Unfinished” Symphony No. 8 and Aaron Copland’s powerful Symphony No. 3, with its famed Fanfare for the Common Man theme.


Read more »