May 15, 2021 | 7:00 pm
Experience Duke Ellington’s 1968 Grammy Award-winning Far East Suite as performed by the Rocky Mountain Jazz Collective.
May 15, 2021 | 7:00 pm
Experience Duke Ellington’s 1968 Grammy Award-winning Far East Suite as performed by the Rocky Mountain Jazz Collective.
May 6, 2021 | 7:00 pm
Grammy- and Emmy-nominated composer Philip Aaberg and his piano trio, the Bibimbap Trio with violinist Angella Ahn and cellist Sara Stalnaker, expand their musical exploration to Billings.
February 25, 2021 | 7:00 pm
Multinational guitarists Mircea Gogoncea and Arturo Castro
Nogueras share their contemporary works inspired by the song and dance traditions of the Balkans and Latin America.
November 5, 2020 | 7:00 pm
Music free of limitations and prejudices. Members Eros Jaca, (cello), Vladyslava Luchenko (violin), and Camille Sublet (piano), perform innovative, folk-inspired interpretations of the world’s greatest composers while forming authentic relationships with their audience.
October 10, 2020 | 7:00 pm
The BSOC proudly teams up with the extensive local talents of the Rocky Mountain Jazz Collective. Join Scott Jeppeson and his friends as they pay homage to legendary pianist and jazz composer Thelonious Monk.
September 3, 2020 | 7:00 pm
The BSOC couldn’t be prouder of Billings’ own Tanner Jorden. Tanner is a two-time winner of the Montana Association of Symphony Orchestra’s Young Artist Competition and has performed at Carnegie Hall. Come listen to Tanner so you can say, I knew him when!
January 23, 2021 | 7:30 PM
Location | TBD
Carrie Krause violin
Mozart Symphony No. 40
Vivaldi Le Quattro Stagioni,
(The Four Seasons)
One of his final masterpieces, Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 is full of beauty and turbulence. Montana soloist Carrie Krause brings her “supreme virtuosity and flair” to Vivaldi’s beloved Four Seasons.
Violinist Carrie Krause’s “elegant, sparkling performance brought audience cheers” –Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Raised in Fairbanks, Alaska, Carrie Krause performs as a baroque violinist with ensembles across the country and on numerous international series, such as the BBC Proms and Utrecht Early Music Festival. She has appeared as principal of the Oregon Bach Festival, Seattle Baroque, Spire in Kansas City, and Apollos’ Fire, among others, and as soloist with Juilliard415, the Calgary Symphony, and the National Repertory Orchestra. In Bozeman, she serves as concertmaster of the Bozeman Symphony and is the founder of Bozeman’s newest arts non-profit, Baroque Music Montana. She also founded the I-90 Collective, the Second String Orchestra, Bozeman Chamber Ensembles, and the Period Performance Workshop. Carrie holds music performance degrees from Carnegie Mellon, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and The Juilliard School. Some days she loves to skate ski almost as much as practicing the violin. www.baroquemusicmontana.com
First premiered in the US with the New York Philharmonic on April 25, 1846. Conducted by Henry C. Timm.
Like most of Mozart’s repertoire, Symphony No. 40 has become an iconic classical work. It is thought by many to be a symphonic last will and testament along with symphonies 39 and 41. There is no concrete proof of this. It is more likely they were composed as a concert series to be played in Vienna on April 16 and 17, 1791. It is unknown whether Mozart actually heard it performed.
Vivaldi’s Four Seasons was published in 1725 in Amsterdam as the first of four works of Opus 8.
Four Seasons is the best known of all Vivaldi’s works. Inspired by the landscapes of Italian artist Marco Ricci, Vivaldi used his creativity to become the first composer to set his music to poetry. Thus. producing the earliest known examples of program music. Four Seasons was published with poems that were possibly written by Vivaldi.
Vivaldi’s Four Seasons can be heard in a multitude of Hollywood soundtracks such as Tin Cup, Spy Game, What Lies Beneath, and The Other Sister.
December 19, 2020 | 7:30 PM
Location | TBD
Amy Schendel, vocalist
Join the BSOC for the must-see holiday concert of the season-Holiday Pops! What better way is there to lift your spirits and get into the holiday mood, than with your BSOC and guest artist Amy Schendel performing all your favorite carols and holiday favorites? We can’t wait to celebrate the holiday season with you!
Amy Schendel is thrilled to be on stage with the Billings Symphony. A versatile performer, she is usually found in the clarinet section but has been a vocal soloist with Symphony numerous times. Amy’s operatic credits include Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, the title role in Floyd’s Susannah, Mimì in La bohème, Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro, Despina in Così fan Tutte, the title role in Sister Angelica and others. Some of her favorite musical theatre roles have been the title role in Evita, Velma in Chicago, Missy in The Marvelous Wonderettes, and Ellen in Miss Saigon. Sometimes she can be found around town singing jazz standards with local jazz musicians, a passion she has held for many years.
Amy is a dedicated music educator, serving her fifteenth year as the Director of Choirs at Billings Skyview High School and as co-conductor of Yellowstone Valley Voices. She travels around the state and beyond conducting honor choirs, adjudicating at festivals, and teaching at summer camps. Amy holds bachelor’s degrees in Clarinet Performance and Music Education, as well as a Master’s in Music Education from the University of Montana. She is a certified member of the VoiceCare Network and is currently serving as the President-Elect of the Montana Music Educators Association.
*Programming subject to change.
October 24, 2020 | 7:30 PM
Location | TBD
Wei Luo piano
Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 3
Schubert Unfinished Symphony
A rising star, Gilmore Young Artist Recipient Wei Luo showcases Prokofiev’s “devilishly difficult” Piano Concerto No. 3 with ease.
American classical radio station WQXR recognized pianist Wei Luo, as one of the 19 artists to watch in 2019. In August 2019, Wei released her self-titled debut album produced by Grammy awards producer Erica Brenner, under DeccaGold, Universal Music Group. Gramaphone online featured the album as one of the most exciting recent releases in July 2019. Soon after the release on various online platforms. Apple Music and Amazon Music (classical) featured the album on the front page. Spotify alone reached around 30,000 listeners.
“This recording reveals a dazzling artist with an astonishing range of colors at her disposal, put to the service of a confident young soul whose musicality suggests the experience of someone two decades older.”–San Diego Union Tribune.
For more information about Wei Luo, visit weiluopiano.com
Premiered December 16, 1921, with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Conducted by Frederick Stock.
Arguably the most popular of Prokofiev’s five piano concertos. Because of its difficulty, and the dexterity and the stamina it takes to play, it tops the list of ultra-virtuosic showpiece concertos. The passionate expression of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 has led it to become one of the most loved piano concertos of the 20th century.
Wei Luo performing Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3
Composed in 1822. Premiered on December 7, 1865, in Vienna. Conducted by Johann von Herbeck.
Competed in 1822 when he was only 25 years old, Schubert’s hauntingly romantic Unfinished Symphony was dedicated to the Graz Music Society. Schubert gave the 2 finished movements to his longtime friend Anselm Hüttenbrenner, who subsequently held on to it in secret for 42 years. Schubert never heard his symphony. He died when he was 31. It was not until 1865 that Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony premiered at the Society of Music Friends in Vienna.
September 26, 2020 | 7:30 PM
Location | TBD
Beethoven Symphony No. 7
The BSOC’s 70th Anniversary begins by celebrating Beethoven’s 250th birthday.
Tchaikovsky’s Serenade first premiered on October 30, 1881, in St. Petersburg. Conducted by Eduard Nápravník.
Tchaikovsky’s Serenade brings love and joy to the listener with its extravagant display of strings. Inspired by Mozart’s The Magic Flute, and having just completed the boisterous 1812 Overture, Tchaikovsky was ready to compose a more serene piece. When talking to friend and patron, Nadezhda von Meck, he stated, “It is a heartfelt piece and so it is not lacking in real qualities.”
Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 first premiered on December 8, 1813, in Vienna. Conducted by Beethoven.
The BSOC celebrates Beethoven’s 250th birthday with one of the most beloved melodies in classical music, Symphony No 7. Beethoven himself stated, ” (it) is one of my most excellent works.”
The raw power and drama of the second movement Allegretto have landed this classical masterpiece in some of Hollywood’s blockbuster films like The King’s Speech, Mr. Holland’s Opus, and X–Men.
*Programming subject to change
March 20, 2021 | 7:30 pm
Location | TBD
This lightly staged production of Frank Loesser’s musical comedy tells of two young couples betting against the odds in Depression-era New York City. Full of heart and humor, this Broadway hit features classics such as Sue Me, Luck be a Lady, and Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat.
After the overture, the curtain rises on a bustling street scene alive with Times Square characters: sightseeing tourists and their guide, teenaged girls in bobby socks with autograph books, street vendors selling apples and flowers from a tray, a heavyweight prize-fighter with his manager, assorted street hustlers, pickpockets and policemen (“Runyonland”). Three gamblers – Benny Southstreet, Nicely-Nicely Johnson, and Rusty Charlie—enter, reading aloud the daily horse-race scratch sheet. They trade tips about different horses (“Fugue for Tinhorns”).
As the gamblers finish their pitch, Sergeant Sarah Brown and the Mission Band enter playing a hymn (“Follow the Fold”). Sarah delivers a street-corner sermon on the evils of gambling, inviting all sinners to visit the Save-a-Soul Mission and repent before it’s too late. Nicely-Nicely and Benny observe that Sarah is wasting her good looks on Mission work. They are joined by Harry the Horse, another gambler. He asks if a location has been found for the floating crap game run by Nathan Detroit. Nathan has had trouble finding locations for his crap game because of increased pressure from the police, particularly Lieutenant Brannigan. Brannigan appears, also looking for Nathan, who soon enters. After Brannigan leaves, Nathan mentions that he needs $1,000 to secure Joey Biltmore’s garage for the game. Nathan is so broke that he doesn’t even have money to buy an engagement anniversary present for Miss Adelaide, his fiancée of fourteen years. Adelaide, a performer at the Hot Box Club, doesn’t approve of Nathan’s gambling activities. Nathan, Benny and Nicely sing about their frustration at possibly losing a chance to make lots of money from the game (“The Oldest Established”).
Angie the Ox, another gambler, mentions that Sky Masterson is in town and could surely supply the money needed for the garage. Nathan knows Sky will bet on almost anything, and he comes up with a way to trick Sky out of the needed funds. He sends Benny to Mindy’s restaurant to find out how much strudel and cheesecake were sold the previous day. Adelaide (who seems to have a perpetual cold) enters with three other women from the club and gives Nathan his anniversary present just as Benny returns with the numbers on the strudel and cheesecake. Sky enters, and Nathan tells Benny and Nicely to take Adelaide to a drugstore for cold medicine. Nathan proposes a $1,000 bet to Sky about which sells more at Mindy’s: strudel or cheesecake. Sky, suspecting the bet is not on the level, won’t take Nathan up on it. Nicely and Benny return and tell him that Adelaide expects Nathan to pick her up after the show. Sky, a confirmed bachelor, suggests that Adelaide has trapped Nathan. When Nathan asks why Sky is traveling to Havana alone, Sky says he could get any woman he chooses to go with him. Nathan bets Sky $1,000 that Nathan can pick a woman that Sky can’t convince to go. Sky accepts. Nathan points to Sarah Brown as the Mission Band passes by.
The Mission Band enters the Save-a-Soul Mission after a night of preaching on Broadway. Sky enters and presents himself as a gambler eager for redemption. When Sarah offers him pamphlets, he suggests that she give him personal help over dinner. She declines the offer. Sky impresses Sarah with his knowledge of the Bible, gleaned from years of living in hotels with the Gideon Bible close at hand. Noting the absence of sinners in the Mission, Sky proposes a trade: he will give Sarah his marker, an IOU guaranteeing to fill the Mission with twelve sinners… if Sarah agrees to have dinner with him in his favorite restaurant, which happens to be in Havana. She indignantly throws the marker in the trash and asks him to leave. Sky accuses Sarah of hating men, a charge that she denies. Sky asks her to describe the man of her dreams. She tells him she’ll know when the right man comes around (“I’ll know”). Sky tells her he, too, will know when the right woman comes along. Their song ends in a kiss. The mood is broken immediately as Sarah slaps Sky.
Nathan phones Joey Biltmore to tell him the $1,000 for the garage is all but guaranteed. Joey reminds him the money is due in advance.
At the Hot Box, Adelaide and the chorus girls perform a musical number (“A Bushel and a Peck”). After the show, she tells Nathan that she is getting a raise and suggests that they finally get married. She shows him the wedding veil she has had for the past three years. She also explains how she has told her mother that Nathan and she are married and have five children. As Nathan offers reasons why they shouldn’t get married, one of the other dancers arrives and complains to Nathan that her date has been canceled because of his crap game. Adelaide gets one of her chronic sneezing attacks as Nathan rushes off. She picks up a medical book that explains how her cold symptoms are psychosomatic and caused by her frustration at being engaged—not married!—for fourteen years (“Adelaide’s Lament”).
Benny and Nicely have been watching Sky follow Sarah and the Mission Band. They hope that Sky fails in his attempts to take her to Havana so Nathan will get the cash to hold the crap game. They observe that men the world over have a weakness for falling in love (“Guys and Dolls”).
Sarah and the Band return to the Mission. Arvide Abernathy, Sarah’s grandfather and the bass drum player of the band, encourages her to pay some attention to Sky. General Cartwright, the head of the Save-a-Soul Mission, arrives and explains that the Broadway Mission’s poor performance in attracting sinners is forcing her to close the branch. Sky appears and protests the closing of the Mission. He also retrieves his marker from the trash and gives it back to Sarah. She then guarantees the General that there will be twelve “genuine” sinners in the Mission the following evening.
All the craps shooters, including Big Jule (a very tough, gun-toting gangster from Chicago), are wearing red carnations as they’re the badge of entry for the game… which still has no location. Brannigan appears and, noticing all the red carnations, asks Nathan what is going on. Benny sees Adelaide coming over with some other Hot Box dancers and tells Brannigan the carnations are for the guests of Nathan’s bachelor party. Adelaide hears this and excitedly announces that they should get married the following night after her show. As Adelaide rushes off with her girlfriends, Nathan tells Benny that he still has not received the money from Sky. Benny wonders if Sky actually took Sarah to Havana.
Sarah and Sky are in Havana. Faced with constantly blaring mambo music and dancing couples (“Havana”), Sky and Sarah escape the noisy nightclub and end up at the fashionable Hotel Nacionale, where Sarah orders a ham sandwich. After a bit of sightseeing, they end up in a street café. Sarah orders a milkshake, which Sky translates to the waiter as “Dulce de Leche,” a potent alcoholic drink. After several drinks, Sarah jealously interrupts when a dancer flirts with Sky, precipitating a huge barroom brawl.
Sky has carried Sarah away from the brawl. As he sets her down, she kisses him. He asks her how she feels. She tells him she feels wonderful (“If I Were a Bell”) and falls into his arms. Realizing that he is falling in love with her, a guilty Sky tells her about the bet he made. “How else would a girl get to meet a gambler?” she responds. She reluctantly allows him to take her back to New York.
Outside the Mission at 4:00 AM, Sky and Sarah run into Adelaide, who is returning from a bridal shower that has been thrown for her by the Hot Box dancers. Sky explains to Sarah that 4:00 AM is his favorite time of day and that she is the only woman with whom he has ever wanted to share it (“My Time of Day”). After revealing to her that his real name is Obediah Masterson, Sky and Sarah sing to each other about their newfound love (“I’ve Never Been in Love Before”). At the end of the song, they are met by Arvide, who is returning from a night of Mission work. As they are talking, police bells are heard. Suddenly, Benny, Nicely, Nathan and the other gamblers run out of the Mission, being chased by Brannigan; Nathan has held the crap game in the Mission. Sarah is convinced that Sky’s trip to Havana was part of Nathan’s plan all along and angrily breaks off with him.
Adelaide and the other dancers perform another number at the Hot Box Club (“Take Back Your Mink”). After the number, Sky enters and is approached by Nicely, who is looking for Adelaide. He has been sent to tell her that Nathan won’t be coming to get her after the show. Nicely tells Sky that Nathan is still at the game because Big Jule, who is losing, won’t allow the game to end until he wins back his money. Adelaide arrives and, after hearing Nicely’s message, realizes that Nathan is still running the crap game. She asks Sky to tell Nathan that she never wants to see him again (“Adelaide’s Lament—Reprise”).
Sarah, angry that she is in love with Sky and convinced that he helped set up the Mission crap game, tells Arvide that she wants to leave. Arvide sings about his dreams for her future (“More, I Cannot Wish You”). Sky and Nicely pass by on their way to the crap game. Sky tells Sarah and Arvide that he intends to honor his IOU to Sarah. He and Nicely open a manhole cover and descend to the crap game that is being held in the sewer.
The game is proceeding furiously (“The Crapshooters’ Dance”). At the end of the dance, Big Jule again demands that they all stay until he wins back the money he has lost (and then some) and uses his gun to back up the demand. He announces that he will play with Nathan only, using his own dice—which are conveniently blank so that only Jule can call the outcome of each throw—so Nathan is bound to lose. Jule also announces that he will play his IOUs against Nathan’s cash. When Sky and Nicely appear at the game, Sky tries to talk to the gamblers about the Mission. Big Jule protests and Sky knocks him down with one swift punch. Sky grabs Big Jule’s gun and tosses it to Nathan. He then proposes a bet on one throw of the dice: if he loses, Sky will pay each gambler $1,000… but, if he wins, each gambler has to show up at the Mission for the meeting taking place that night. The gamblers all take up Sky’s bet. As Sky prepares to throw the dice, he prays to Lady Luck for help (“Luck Be a Lady Tonight”).
Harry the Horse and Big Jule complain about having to go to the Mission. Nathan sees Adelaide, who angrily tells him she has told her mother they are expecting their sixth child. Nathan tells her they can’t get married before midnight because he has to go to a Mission meeting. Adelaide complains about all of Nathan’s lies as he professes his love (“Sue Me”).
At a few minutes past midnight, all the gamblers enter the Mission to the surprise of Sarah Brown and the delight of General Abernathy. At the General’s request for testimonies, various gamblers tell how they’re sorry that Sky won his bet. The testimonies continue as Nicely recounts a dream he had about being on a boat to heaven (“Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ the Boat”). After the song, Nathan confesses to Sarah about his bet with Sky, explaining that Sky admitted to losing the bet. Sarah is puzzled by Nathan’s statement since Sky won his bet. She exits the Mission as the General begins to lead the gamblers in a hymn (“Follow the Fold—Reprise”).
Sarah and Adelaide meet on the street in the early morning and commiserate about Sky and Nathan. They conclude that they should just concentrate on getting married and worry about changing their men afterward (“Marry the Man Today”).
Adelaide appears in a wedding gown and calls for Nathan, who now operates a newsstand. He emerges from the stand in an elegant cut-away and tells her he hasn’t yet found a place for their wedding. The Mission Band enters, led by Sky and Sarah, and Nathan asks them if he and Adelaide could get married in the Mission. Arvide, who has already performed the marriage ceremony for Sky and Sarah, promises to do the same for them. When Adelaide details her plans for a little place in the country, Nathan lets out a huge sneeze (“Guys and Dolls—Reprise”).
February 13, 2021 | 7:30 PM
Rafael Aguirre guitar
Images by Michael Sample
Rodrigo Concierto de Aranjuez
Copland Appalachian Spring
Our salute to extraordinary places begins with celebrated guitarist Rafael Aguirre performing Rodrigo’s jewel for Spanish guitar, Concierto de Aranjuez, and ends with Copland’s quintessentially American Appalachian Spring.
Rafael Aguirre is an internationally acclaimed musician whose deep understanding of music, dazzling virtuosity, and immensely diverse repertoire has taken him to 34 countries. At the beginning of his extraordinary career, he won thirteen first prizes at international competitions (including the Tarrega Competition and Pro Musicis, New York). He is one of the most celebrated guitarists worldwide. For more information about Rafael Aguirre, visit rafael-aguirre.com.
First premiered on November 9, 1940, at Palau de la Música Catalana with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Barcelona. Conducted by César Mendoza Lasalle.
The gardens at Palacio Real de Aranjuez, the former Spanish royal residence located 50 miles south of Madrid, Spain inspired Concierto de Aranjuez. Blind since the age of three, Rodrigo was a pianist and did not play the guitar. Despite that, Concierto de Aranjuez became his best-known work with what classical guitarist John Williams called his “distinctive style of dissonant elegance.”
Concierto de Aranjuez is meant to be played beyond the written notes. Rodrigo stated “it should sound like the hidden breeze that stirs the treetops in the parks, as strong as a butterfly and as dainty as a verónica [a classic pass in bullfighting.]”
April 24, 2021 | 7:30 pm
Location | TBD
David Kim violin
Billings Youth Orchestra
Beethoven Violin Concerto
Mussorgsky Pictures at an
The BSOC’s season comes to a close with Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, showcasing the brilliant colors of the orchestra. Philadelphia Orchestra concertmaster David Kim takes the stage to perform Beethoven’s revolutionary Violin Concerto.
Violinist David Kim was named Concertmaster of The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1999. Born in Carbondale, Illinois in 1963, he started playing the violin at three, began studies with the famed pedagogue Dorothy DeLay at eight, and later received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The Juilliard School.
Each season, Mr. Kim appears as a guest in concert with famed modern hymn writers Keith and Kristyn Getty at venues such as the Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and Carnegie Hall. In August, he returns to Nashville to perform at the Getty Music Worship Conference–Sing! 2021. Mr. Kim serves as Distinguished Artist at the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University in Macon. He frequently serves as an adjudicator at international violin competitions such as the Menuhin and Sarasate.
Mr. Kim has been awarded Honorary Doctorates from Eastern University in suburban Philadelphia, the University of Rhode Island, and Dickinson College. His instruments are a J.B. Guadagnini from Milan, Italy ca. 1757 on loan from The Philadelphia Orchestra and a Michael Angelo Bergonzi from Cremona ca. 1754. Mr. Kim lives in a Philadelphia suburb with his wife Jane and daughters Natalie and Maggie. He is an avid golfer and outdoorsman.