Tag Archives: Tacoma Symphony Orchestra

Fourth episode of Tacoma’s own ‘artTown’ TV show now available

31 Mar
Stan Shaw and Michael Sullivan discuss Samuel Dashiell Hammett’s The Flitcraft Parable

Stan Shaw and Michael Sullivan discuss Samuel Dashiell Hammett’s The Flitcraft Parable

The City of Tacoma’s Media and Communications Office – in partnership with its Community and Economic Development Department’s Arts Program – has begun airing a new episode of “artTown,” a cultural documentary-style TV initiative exploring Tacoma’s emergence as a major creative hub in the Pacific Northwest.

Tacoma Symphony Orchestra music director Sarah Ioannides

Tacoma Symphony Orchestra music director Sarah Ioannides

In this episode:

  • Get to know music director Sarah Ioannides and learn how her past experience is influencing her work with the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra
  • Tacoma Poet Laureate Lucas Smiraldo explores our history and future at the Chinese Reconciliation Park
  • Historian Michael Sullivan and graphic artist Stan Shaw take an in-depth look at Samuel Dashiell Hammett’s The Flitcraft Parable and how it was influenced by Hammett’s time in Tacoma
  • Pianist Kim Davenport finds inspiration and contemplation at Thea’s Park
  • The 6th Avenue Yarn Bomber, Russell Valentine, Gwen Demarest, and Roberta Lowes give us a humorous look at knitting culture in Tacoma
Stan Shaw illustrates Samuel Dashiell Hammett’s The Flitcraft Parable

Stan Shaw illustrates Samuel Dashiell Hammett’s The Flitcraft Parable

Launched in October 2013, the series features diverse perspectives on a variety of creative disciplines. Offering a more holistic look at creativity in Tacoma, “artTown” stretches beyond what people might traditionally think of as “creative” – such as fine art, music or dance – to spotlight other creative areas of interest that have flourished in Tacoma like food, fashion, innovative education practices, architecture and more.

Online viewing:

Watch “artTown” anytime at cityoftacoma.org/artTown.

Tacoma Poet Laureate Lucas Smiraldo at the Chinese Reconciliation Park

Tacoma Poet Laureate Lucas Smiraldo at the Chinese Reconciliation Park

TV Tacoma air times:

Mondays at noon
Tuesdays at 1 a.m.
Wednesdays at 8 a.m.
Thursdays at 6 p.m.
Fridays at 8 p.m.
Saturdays at 5 p.m.
Sundays at 5 a.m.

TV Tacoma is aired on both the Click! and Comcast Cable systems. On Click!, TV Tacoma can be seen on Channel 12 within Tacoma City limits and in Pierce County, with the exception of University Place, where TV Tacoma can be found on Channel 21. On Comcast, TV Tacoma can be seen on Channel 12 within Tacoma city limits and on Channel 21 in Pierce County. TV Tacoma is not on the Comcast system in University Place, but is accessible anywhere on the Internet at tvtacoma.com.

Future episodes will be produced in part based on some of the audience feedback culled via social media, email at maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org or phone at (253) 591-2054.

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2015-16 Arts Anchor Fund and TAIP Recipients Announced

18 Mar

Nine Arts Organizations and 16 Artists Funded by Tacoma Arts Commission

RJ Oki and Trent Quoicho blowing at the Museum of Glass as part of a collaboration with Team Chihuly.

RJ Oki and Trent Quoicho blowing at the Museum of Glass as part of a collaboration with Team Chihuly. Photo provided by Hilltop Artists.

The Tacoma Arts Commission has awarded $255,000 to nine Tacoma-based arts organizations through its Arts Anchor Fund program, and $40,000 to 16 Tacoma artists through its Tacoma Artists Initiative Program. The Arts Anchor Fund program awards range in value from $20,000 to $40,000 each, and the Tacoma Artists Initiative Program awards are $2,500 each. Funding for both programs is for the 2015-16 biennium.

“Supporting a diverse group of local artists and arts organizations helps build a creative community,” said Tacoma Arts Commission Chair Traci Kelly. “Funding the arts at multiple levels means our city gives everyone opportunities for meaningful engagement and expression.”

Arts Anchor Fund Program Awards

Students from Tacoma Art Museum's after school off-site outreach programs visit the museum to tour the galleries. Photo provided by Tacoma Art Museum.

Students from Tacoma Art Museum’s after school off-site outreach programs visit the museum to tour the galleries. Photo provided by Tacoma Art Museum.

The 2015-2016 Arts Anchor Fund program award recipients are: Hilltop Artists, Museum of Glass, Northwest Sinfonietta, Tacoma Art Museum, Tacoma Musical Playhouse, Tacoma Opera, Tacoma Symphony Orchestra, Tacoma Youth Symphony Association and The Grand Cinema.

In 2014, these nine organizations served 500,654 people, provided free admission to 124,209 people, and generated an estimated $9.55 million for the local economy.

Flame-working demonstration as part of Museum of Glass' Hot Shop Heroes: Healing with Fire program. Photo by Greg Owen.

Flame-working demonstration as part of Museum of Glass’ Hot Shop Heroes: Healing with Fire program. Photo by Greg Owen.

The Tacoma Arts Commission established the Arts Anchor Fund program in 1995 to provide financial support to major local not-for-profit arts organizations that significantly improve the quality of life for Tacoma. These arts organizations serve Tacoma’s community through regularly scheduled performances, exhibits and events, and school and outreach programs.

Tacoma Artists Initiative Program Awards

Acrylic painting by Christopher Jordan for COLORED Series. Photo provided by Christopher Jordan.

Author, Acrylic painting by Christopher Jordan for COLORED Series. Photo provided by Christopher Jordan.

The 2015-2016 Tacoma Artists Initiative Program funded artists are: Saign Charlestein, Jennifer Chushcoff, Matthew Coté, Kristin Giordano, Michael Haeflinger, Whitney Henry-Lester, Christopher Jordan, Jeremy Mangan, Janet Marcavage, Tim Norris, Chandler O’Leary, Isaac Olsen, Nichole Rathburn, Holly Senn, Emilie Shimkus and Gregory Youtz.

Catabomb, textile sculpture by Nichole Rathburn. Photo provided by Nichole Rathburn.

Catabomb, textile sculpture by Nichole Rathburn. Photo provided by Nichole Rathburn.

Funded Tacoma Artists Initiative Program projects include a spoken word album and poetry reading; a podcast series exploring varying perspectives on Tacoma; production of a series of short films showcasing poetry; performance and recording of instrumental and vocal songs; production of a book of poetry and photographs; and the creation and exhibition of two- and three-dimensional visual art including metal art, photography, mixed media, paintings, printmaking, illustrations, and textile and paper sculptures.

The Tacoma Artists Initiative Program was established in 1999 to assist artists with the generation of new work, and to share their talent with the public in a free and accessible format.

Fall Haul, sketchbook drawing by Chandler O'Leary. Photo provided by Chandler O'Leary.

Fall Haul, sketchbook drawing by Chandler O’Leary. Photo provided by Chandler O’Leary.

The Arts Anchor Fund program and Tacoma Artists Initiative Program are two of three funding programs administered by the Tacoma Arts Commission. For a complete listing of funding programs and information about the Tacoma Arts Commission, visit cityoftacoma.org/arts.

“Sounds of the Season” with Tacoma Symphony Orchestra

26 Nov
WHO: Tacoma Symphony Orchestra with guest artist Maria Valenzuela (vocalist); and guest ensemble, Tacoma Youth Chorus
WHAT: Sounds of the Season Concert
WHERE: Pantages Theater
WHEN: Sunday, December 2 at 2:30 pm
ADMISSION: $24, $42, $62, $77. Tickets at www.tacomasymphony.org

Photos courtesy of BCPA

Sounds of the Season is the annual “musical collage” of seasonal delights presented by the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra (TSO). Music Director Harvey Felder has once again assembled a variety of musical styles and sounds – from carols to popular holiday melodies, from pops to classics – sure to please all ages.

This special evening at the Pantages Theater will include music by the orchestra; songs to spotlight TSO’s guest soloist, the lovely and talented Maria Valenzuela; and works showcasing the Tacoma Youth Chorus (TYO) – plus a caroling medley where the audience can sing along.

Maestro Felder has joined forces with Judy Herrington, director of Tacoma Youth Chorus; Valenzuela; and TSO arranger Bo Ayars to create a never-before-heard program. Ayars is known for creating arrangements of seasonal favorites that perfectly match the talent of the vocalists with the punch, sizzle and sparkle of the 80-piece orchestra.

Celebrating its 21st year, the TYO is made up of seven auditioned youth choirs ranging from grade to high school. Soloist Maria Valenzuela last performed with TSO during its Rodgers & Hammerstein Celebration in 2005. She has also appeared with the Seattle Bach Choir, Oakland Symphony, Orlando Philharmonic, the Champaign-Urbana Symphony, and as a member of the Seattle Opera Chorus. She made a special appearance in the Carnegie Hall celebration, Merry Christmas NYC, in 2007. Recent performances include as “Luisa Contini” in NINE with Tacoma Musical Playhouse, and as “Maria Merelli” in Tacoma Little Theatre’s Lend Me A Tenor.

Information and tickets at www.tacomasymphony.org.

Tacoma Symphony Searches for New Music Director

18 Jun

By Hannah Franke, Tacoma Arts Commision Intern

In its quest for a new Music Director, the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra (TSO) has announced the much-anticipated selection of four finalists: Paul Haas, Sarah Loannides, Kevin Rhodes, and Scott Speck.

In 2011, TSO Music Director Harvey Felder announced that he will be leaving the position at the end of the 2013-2014 season, his 20th anniversary.

“Under the leadership of Maestro Felder, the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra’s transformation from community to professional orchestra has been fully realized,” stated TSO Executive Director, Andy Buelow. “We now seek to move to the next level of growth as a regional artistic and educational resource.”

 A 13-member Music Director Task Force, chaired by Immediate Past President Clark D’Elia, began the search for Felder’s replacement with over 100 applicants from international backgrounds. The task force includes TSO board, staff, musicians, chorus, subscribers, donors, and community stakeholders.

Each finalist will guest conduct with the TSO during the 2013 calendar year; TSO will announce its selection in early 2014.

About the Candidates
Each of the four finalist conductors is nationally acclaimed and will bring his/her own individuality to the TSO orchestra and repertoire. These bios are courtesy of the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra.

Sarah Ioannides

Hailed as “a conductor of unquestionable strength and authority” by The New York Times, Sarah Ioannides was named by the Los Angeles Times in 2009 as “one of six female conductors breaking the glass podium.” Ioannides is the current music director of the Spartanburg (SC) Philharmonic and previously served in that post for the El Paso Symphony Orchestra. Past positions include assistant conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony and Cincinnati Pops and music director of the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestra. Ioannides will conduct the TSO on Sunday, February 24, 2013 in a program featuring Rota’s Divertimento Concertante for Double Bass and Orchestra, among other works. The soloist will be TSO principal double bass Christopher Burns. The concert will conclude with Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 in D minor.

Paul Haas

The New York Times has declared conductor Paul Haas “on the brink of a noteworthy career.” Time Out New York calls him “visionary.” Current music director of the Symphony of Northwest Arkansas, Haas is founder and artistic director of Sympho, a concert production company that features unexpected performance methods and unorthodox venues. Formerly music director of the renowned New York Youth Symphony, Haas garnered an ASCAP-League of American Orchestras Bernstein Award for educational programming. An active composer, he conducted the premiere of his Matthew Says for orchestra, chorus, and two violin soloists at Carnegie Hall in 2007. Haas will appear with the TSO on Saturday, May 4, 2013 conducting Alexandra Bryant’s Strange Attractors, Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 (with pianist Stephanie Leon Shames), and Brahms’ Symphony No. 4.

Kevin Rhodes

Called “a highly accomplished conductor” by Opernwelt, Kevin Rhodes has had a career spanning several continents and more than two decades. His work extends from the major opera houses of Europe to the concert stages of the U.S. Rhodes currently serves as music director of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra (MA), where he has been lauded for “heart-on-the-sleeve musical integrity” and “sure-footed, elegant and exciting performances.” (Springfield Union-Times) He also serves as music director of Boston’s Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and of the Traverse Symphony Orchestra (MI), which he has transformed from its roots as a community ensemble into one of the Midwest’s finest professional per service orchestras. During all this he has remained a regular guest conductor of the Teatro Alla Scala in Milan, the Vienna State Opera, and Paris Opera. A trained pianist who often conducts from the keyboard bench, Mr. Rhodes will open the TSO’s 2013-2014 season in October of 2013.

Scott Speck

“As energetic as he is talented!” raved the Baltimore Sun about conductor Scott Speck, current music director of the Joffrey Ballet and of the West Michigan and Mobile (AL) symphony orchestras.   His gala performances with Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, Joshua Bell, Midori, Evelyn Glennie and Olga Kern have highlighted his recent and current seasons as music director of the Mobile Symphony. In recent seasons Scott Speck has conducted at London’s Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, the Paris Opera, Washington’s Kennedy Center, San Francisco’s War Memorial Opera House, and the Los Angeles Music Center. Speck’s name is familiar to many as the best-selling co-author of Classical Music for Dummies, Opera for Dummies and Ballet for Dummies. The last of the four candidates, Speck will conduct the TSO in November of 2013.

Who will be the one person to direct Tacoma Symphony Orchestra into the future? Only time will tell. Reserve a seat this season to watch the action begin to unfold.

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