ASO announces 2016-2017 season

The Acadiana Symphony Orchestra has announced its 32nd concert season that will begin with a five-year artistic vision exploring the relationship between orchestral sounds and different areas of science, specifically the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math– or STEAM for short.

The first year of the cycle will artistically investigate parallels between science and orchestral music with performances of masterworks by famous composers such as Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, and Bernstein as well as presentations by local composers and artists.

Musical collaborations will feature performances with the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra Chorus, the Nicholls State University Chorus, and Lafayette’s own Chorale Acadienne, UL Lafayette Chamber Singers, and the UL Lafayette Chorale. The holiday season will also feature Zachary Richard, an Acadiana favorite who never fails to please ASO audiences.

Another returning artist is pianist James Dick who has won some of the world’s most prestigious music awards. Dick’s playing has been described as a blend of “modern-day energy and technique with an Old World graciousness and civility, resulting in a passionate sound that keeps audiences engrossed.” Dick is also the founder of the International Festival-Institute at Round Top in Texas, which is one of the most distinguished musical education programs in the United States. Under his direction it offers programs throughout the year as well as a summer music festival and institute for young artists.

The ASO will perform at a variety of venues including St. John’s Cathedral and the Acadiana Center for the Arts with the majority of concerts to be held at the Heymann Performing Arts Center, including the season opener, “Symphonic Landscapes: Beauty of Natural Science.” This epic season opener will feature a large range of percussion instruments with an American premier by Chinese composer Changiun Xu, and world premier by local artist, Danny Devillier.

The music will be highlighted by dramatic photographs of beautiful locations all over the planet like the Grand Canyon. “Oktoberfest: the Science of Beer Making” will also take place at the Heymann Center and will feature music by German composers. The annual Christmas concert, “Magic of the Season,” will be there too, as will “Perfectly Frank: A Century of Sinatra.”

Appropriately, “Bernstein’s Psalms and Einstein’s Favorites” will be performed at St. John’s Cathedral. The Acadiana Center for the Arts will be the setting for the annual Heartstrings concert presenting celebrated saxophonist Ashu and romantically themed this year, “Love and Sax.” Concert-goers will have the option to purchase a special Valentine’s Indian feast prior to the concert. The final concert of the season, “Architects of Sound,” with pianist James Dick, will also take place there.

Concert-goers have a wide variety of ticket packages to choose from, ranging from one that offers a selection of three concerts to one that includes not only the seven announced performances but VIP parking and pre-concert receptions as well. Tickets can be purchased online at www.acadianasymphony.org/symphony/concerts-tickets.html or at the ASO Box Office in the Oil Center.