Symphony News

Area Children to Perform Community Concerts

January 30, 2017

Featured musicians receive training through the Santa Barbara Symphony Music Education Center. 

Santa Barbara, CA — Local children will be the featured performers in two free community concerts presented in February by the Santa Barbara Symphony Music Education Center in partnership with the Santa Barbara Unified School District (SBUSD). String musicians in grades three through six will perform at 5:30 pm on Thursday, February 2, in the Marjorie Luke Theatre, and instrumentalists of all ages will perform at 7 pm on Thursday, February 23, in the San Marcos High School Auditorium. All performers are SBUSD students.

The February 2 concert will feature participants in BRAVO!, an afterschool program that provides hands-on instrument instruction to elementary students ages 9 to 12. The Santa Barbara Symphony Music Education Center is partnering with the SBUSD to administer the district program following its expansion last fall. The SBUSD Honor Band Concert on February 23 will feature BRAVO! musicians as well as students in junior high and high school.  

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[Scene Magazine] Orchestral Hits in Living Color

January 27, 2017

For first concert of new year, the Santa Barbara Symphony performs scores from the classic Disney Film 'Fantasia,' with live orchestral backing to the on-screen film excerpts

To report that there will be Mickey Mouse conditions at this weekend’s convening of the Santa Barbara Symphony is both a matter of truth, and potential cultural excitement of the sound and sight kind. For the first concert program of the New Year, the Symphony is showcasing the musical component of the classical musicfueled Disney animated classic “Fantasia,” with live, orchestral accompaniment to excerpts from the film. That this all takes place in vintage movie palace The Granada Theatre, dating back to the end of the silent era of the late ’20s, adds to the charm and historical fiber of the occasion.

Made in 1940, and featuring music of Elgar, selected moments from the ballet work of Stravinsky’s “Firebird” and Tchaikovsky’s “Nutcracker,” and — the Mickey Mouse moment — Dukas’ “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” “Fantasia” is a unique landmark in popular cinema, a rare meeting of high and mass culture. Public awareness of the riches and the deep heritage of classical music was, and continues to be, greatly enhanced by Disney’s grand gesture.

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[Independent] Santa Barbara Symphony Accompanies ‘Fantasia’

January 27, 2017

Orchestra Gives Live Performance to Screened Film Excerpts

Maybe more than any other animated film of my younger years, Fantasia hit that sweet spot of lasting memory. It was the silly beauty of hippos frolicking in pink tutus and the brooding specter of a demon looming over dark mountains. But mostly it was the music, the flutter of piccolos and the crash of symbols in those scenes that drilled the emotions of Fantasia into my mind and has kept it alive with flashes of nostalgia into my adulthood.

That’s why I’ll see it again this weekend when the Santa Barbara Symphony, under the baton of guest conductor David Lockington, will perform live to screened excerpts of the original 1940 Disney film and its Fantasia 2000 reboot. The show will also feature Paul Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber and Lockington’s own Ceremonial Fantasy Fanfare.

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[Voice Magazine] Fantasia to share the stage with the Santa Barbara Symphony

January 20, 2017

Having captured the imagination of generations, Walt Disney's animated Fantasia will morph into a musical masterpiece at Santa Barbara Symphony concerts on January 28th and 29th.

Under the baton of guest conductor David Lockington, the Symphony will provide stirring orchestral accompaniment to screened excerpts from the beloved films, along with Hindemith's richly colorful Symphonic Metamorphosis on Themes by Carl Maria von Weber and Lockington's own Ceremonial Fantasy Fanfare.

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Santa Barbara Symphony to Present Concerts for Young People on January 26 & 27

January 20, 2017

Free symphonic performances at the Granada Theatre will introduce area children to the wonders of orchestral music.

Santa Barbara, CA — In response to growing demand, the Santa Barbara Symphony will present four Concerts for Young People over two days at the Granada Theatre – a twofold increase over last year. Performances will take place at 10 and 11:30 am on Thursday, January 26, and Friday, January 27. Now in its sixth decade, the Concerts for Young People program is designed to introduce area fourth-, fifth-, and sixth-graders to the wonders of orchestral music through live interactive, kid-friendly symphonic performances and demonstrations. Attendance is free for students and teachers. A list of participating Santa Barbara Unified School District schools appears below.

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Don Gilman Named Vice President of Santa Barbara Symphony Board of Directors

January 17, 2017

Santa Barbara, CA — Don Gilman, an internationally recognized author, speaker, trainer, and executive coach, has been elected vice president of the Santa Barbara Symphony Board of Directors. His appointment was effective January 1. 

Dr. Gilman, who was named to a three-year term on the Symphony Board last spring, currently serves as executive director of the Institute for the Advancement of Critical Thinking and as a senior faculty member at the American Management Association. He also heads Gilman Consulting Group, which specializes in executive coaching for leaders of high-tech companies. Previously, he served as director of strategic marketing at a division of Bosch, including more than two years at the firm’s headquarters in Stuttgart, Germany, and held various management positions at Vetronix, Litton Guidance and Control Systems, and Delco Systems Operations. A Santa Barbara native and an alumnus of the Santa Barbara Youth Symphony, Dr. Gilman holds a bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from Westmont College, a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from UC Santa Barbara, a master’s degree in engineering management from West Coast University in Los Angeles, and a doctorate in organization change from Pepperdine University. His most recent book, Outsmarting V.U.C.A., will be published next month. He is currently a board member for the Foundation for Girsh Park, the Coastal Housing Coalition, and the Institute of Management Consultants. Dr. Gilman chairs the Governance Committee for the Santa Barbara Symphony Board of Directors.

“We are very excited and fortunate to welcome Don as our Board vice president. His leadership experience and deep ties to our community have led to him playing a key role on the Board, and will help propel the organization forward in the years ahead,” said Symphony Board President Arthur Swalley.

The Santa Barbara Symphony’s 64th season is underway. Complete program information is available online at