North Carolina Symphony
< MAY >
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
  2 3 4
8 9
14 15 16 17
21 22 23 24 25 26
28 29 30 31      
Full Statewide Concert Calendar
View Concerts by Series

About Us: Press Releases

North Carolina Symphony Announces 2016/17 Raleigh Season

Posted: January 31, 2016



North Carolina Symphony Announces
2016/17 Raleigh Season


Grant Llewellyn Leads North Carolina Symphony in Two Orchestral Masterpieces: Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Britten’s War Requiem


Symphony to Participate in March 2017 SHIFT Festival at the Kennedy Center; Works by Robert Ward, Caroline Shaw, Mason Bates, and Sarah Kirkland Snider


Exceptional Classical Repertoire: Beethoven, Brahms, Copland, Dvorák, Elgar, Holst, Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Rimsky-Korsakov, Sibelius, and More


Extraordinary Classical Artists: Augustin Hadelich, Stephen Hough, Jeremy Denk, Caroline Shaw, Alexei Volodin, Joélle Harvey, and More


Acclaimed Guest Conductors to Work with Orchestra in 2016/17: Karina Canellakis, Carlos Izcaray, Christoph König, Tito Muñoz, and More


Unforgettable Special Concerts: Lang Lang, New Year’s in Vienna


Britten’s Masterpiece, the War Requiem Marks World War I Anniversary


Outstanding Pops Concerts include Television and Broadway Star Jason Alexander, Blockbuster Film Scores, A Pink Martini Christmas, A Star Trek Spectacular, Romantic Nights with Music from Phantom of the Opera, and The Pirates of Penzance 


Young People’s Concerts Feature The Music of Star WarsGershwin’s Magic Keys, and An Afternoon of Dr. Seuss


RALEIGH, N.C. – North Carolina Symphony Music Director Grant Llewellyn and Sandi Macdonald, president of the North Carolina Symphony today announced programming for its 2016/17 season, the orchestra’s 84th season and Llewellyn’s 13th season as Music Director. 


Llewellyn has programmed a 2016/17 season that promises inspiring presentations of classical music favorites, innovative programming in North Carolina and on the national stage, and collaborations between the superb musicians of the orchestra and world-renowned composers and artists. 


“There is so much to look forward to in the new season,” said Llewellyn. “As always, our musicians will bring their very best to each concert, creating performances that bring to glorious life the magnificent works of our finest composers. This is music that belongs to the whole world, and that the whole world loves.”


The season opens in September 2016 with performances that feature Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1, performed with pianist Stephen Hough, plus works by Tchaikovsky and Glinka. Other season highlights include Dvorák’s Symphony No. 5, with pianist Alexei Volodin; a celestial program featuring Gustav Holst’s masterpiece in The Planets: An HD Odyssey, that will feature the famous music set to high definition images from NASA; Messiah Choruses that showcase the season’s most beautiful music; a celebration of Mozart’s Birthday; and a program that showcases the music being performed at the SHIFT Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.


In April, Music Director Grant Llewellyn will lead the orchestra in two masterpieces that illustrate the power of the human spirit: performances of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and its powerful message of struggle and triumph; and performances of Britten’s War Requiem, which addresses the questions of mortality. These performances also feature the North Carolina Master Chorale, the Raleigh Boychoir, and soloists.  The season finale will take place in May, 2017 as Grant Llewellyn leads a performance of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5, plus Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto featuring Augustin Hadelich.


In 2016/17, the Symphony continues its exploration of music of our time with recent works from important contemporary composers, including Julia Adolphe, Timo Andres, Mason Bates, William Henry Curry, Avner Dorman, Jennifer Higdon, Karel Husa, Missy Mazzoli, Caroline Shaw, Sarah Kirkland Snider, Michael Torke, Pēteris Vasks, and Eric Whitacre.



Guest Artists and Conductors


Guest artists on the classical season include violinists Augustin Hadelich and Jinjoo Cho, pianists Lang Lang, Stephen Hough, Alexi Volodin, Jeremy Denk, and Clara Yang, and vocalist Joélle Harvey,


North Carolina Symphony Concertmaster Brian Reagin, Principal Viola Samuel Gold, and Principal Horn Rebekah Daley are among the featured soloists this season. Symphony Associate Conductor David Glover will lead the orchestra in select Classical and Pops concerts.  The North Carolina Master Chorale will also perform on the Classical series.  The Master Chorale is the Resident Chorus of the North Carolina Symphony. 



Guest conductors Joshua Weilerstein, Stuart Chafetz, Jack Everly, Teddy Abrams, Carlos Izcaray, Christoph König, Karina Canellakis, and Tito Muñoz will join the orchestra for select Classical and Pops concerts. 



Symphony to Perform at SHIFT Festival in March, 2017, in Washington D.C.

The North Carolina Symphony was named as one of only four American orchestras selected to participate in the inaugural year of SHIFT: A Festival of American Orchestras, a three-year festival held in Washington, D.C., which will begin in the March of 2017. Participation in the festival, which is a collaboration between the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Washington Performing Arts, is designed to bring national attention to the work of each organization chosen, not only for their artistic excellence but for their relationships with their communities.  The Symphony will perform works by composers with ties to North Carolina, including Robert Ward, Mason Bates, Caroline Shaw, and Sarah Kirkland Snider.



Britten’s Masterpiece, the War Requiem Marks World War I Anniversary

As America marks the centennial in 2017 of the U.S. entry into World War I, the North Carolina Symphony, the North Carolina Master Chorale and the Raleigh Boychoir – more than 250 musicians on stage – will join forces to commemorate the “War to End All Wars.”  In partnership with the State Archives of North Carolina, the Symphony will perform a program that includes stirring narration with Britten’s monumental War Requiem.  Vocalists joining the North Carolina Symphony and Music Director Grant Llewellyn include tenor Nicholas Phan, baritone Stephen Powell, and soprano Tamara Wilson. Later in April, Llewellyn and the orchestra will perform Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, with its immortal passage “Ode to Joy.”



Special Concerts

Special concerts in 2016/17 include the incomparable pianist Lang Lang, who is making his third appearance with the Symphony, A Classical Christmas, Thanksgiving Holiday Pops, and the annual New Year’s Eve concert that features timeless melodies of Vienna and big-band favorites.



Friday Favorites

The popular Friday noon concerts include Dvorák’s Symphony No. 5; an All Mozart program in celebration of the composer’s birthday; Messiah Choruses, conducted by Timothy Myers; Brahms Symphony No. 1 led by Grant Llewellyn; and more.



Pops and Young People’s Concerts

In addition to its outstanding classical series, the North Carolina Symphony will feature an impressive array of Pops and Young People’s Concerts at Meymandi Concert Hall.  In the 2016-2017 season, guest artists and programs for Pops include Tony Award-winning actor and Broadway star Jason Alexander; the ever popular Pink Martini, which will bring A Pink Martini Christmas to the stage of Meymandi Concert Hall; Blockbuster Film Scores, an epic journey with the great film composers including Henry Mancini, Bernard Herrmann, Ennio Morricone, Hans Zimmer and John Williams; A Star Trek Spectacular, in honor of the 50th anniversary of the iconic television series, with music from 2001: A Space Odyssey, E.T., Close Encounters, and of course Star Trek, hosted by Jonathan Frakes, well-known for his role as Commander William T. Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation; Romantic Nights with Music from Phantom of the Opera, which will feature music from the Broadway smash, along with hits from West Side Story, Gone with the Wind, and more; and the Pops Season Finale – a semi-staged production of the comic masterpiece The Pirates of Penzance, in collaboration with the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.


Young People’s Concerts in 2016-17 will begin with a Halloween weekend performance of The Music of Star Wars that features great music, costume contests, and more.  In February, 2017, Gershwin’s Magic Keys, will use George Gershwin’s music to tell a story of unlocking a youngster’s musical potential.  The finale of the Young People’s Concerts in April, 2017, will be An Afternoon of Dr. Seuss, which will bring alive classics like “The Sneetches” and “Green Eggs & Ham” with the orchestra, vocalists, dancers, and plenty of fun. All Young People’s Concerts take place on Saturdays at 1 and 4 p.m. at Meymandi Concert Hall in downtown Raleigh.


Statewide Series

Concerts in Chapel Hill, Moore County, Fayetteville, New Bern and Wilmington offer performances that include the same great programs and artists that make up the 2016/17 Raleigh Classical Series and Friday Favorites, as well as some programs and guest artists heard only in those communities. Statewide series programming will be announced later in the spring.



Sneak Peek at UNC REX Healthcare Summerfest

The North Carolina Symphony’s popular UNC Rex Healthcare Summerfest concerts bring great music for relaxed listening to Cary’s Koka Booth Amphitheatre May 28 through July 9.  While concerts begin at 7:30 p.m., concertgoers may bring picnics, blankets and lawn chairs as early as 5:30 p.m. to enjoy the striking natural surroundings before the music begins. Some of music’s most exciting offerings—as well as contests and prizes, the MetLife Instrument Zoos for the kids, the Town of Cary’s Fourth of July celebration, with fireworks and so much more—make these evening performances under the stars a special treat for everyone in the family.  Highlights include opening night with Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony, Gershwin and Jazz with Joey Alexander, the youngest-ever Grammy nominee, a festival of The Music of John Williams, an evening of Beethoven, and much more.

See the full UNC REX Healthcare Summerfest Season & purchase tickets here.



Ticket Information

For information about subscription options, dates, times and ticket prices, visit the North Carolina Symphony website at or call North Carolina Symphony Audience Services at 919.733.2750 or toll free 877.627.6724, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.




Meymandi Concert Hall
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh
Raleigh Classical Series concerts begin at 8pm.



FRI/SAT, SEP 23-24, 2016 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Stephen Hough, piano

Glinka: Overture to Ruslan and Ludmila
Rachmaninoff: Piano Concerto No. 1
Stravinsky: Petrouchka


FRI/SAT, OCT 7-8, 2016 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Alexei Volodin, piano

Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No. 3
Dvořák: Symphony No. 5


FRI/SAT, OCT 21-22, 2016 | 8PM
Joshua Weilerstein, conductor
Rebekah Daley, horn

Julia Adolphe: Dark Sand, Sifting Light
Strauss: Horn Concerto No. 2
Peteris Vasks: Epifania
Elgar: Enigma Variations


FRI/SAT, NOV 4-5, 2016 | 8PM
Teddy Abrams, conductor

Copland: Fanfare for the Common Man
Copland: Our Town
Barber: Symphony No. 1
Missy Mazzoli: Sinfonia
John Williams: Overture from The Cowboys
Copland: Suite from Billy the Kid


FRI/SAT, NOV 18-19, 2016 | 8PM
Carlos Izcaray, conductor

Avner Dorman: Astrolatry
Jennifer Higdon: blue cathedral
Holst: The Planets (in HD)


FRI/SAT DEC 2-3, 2016 | 8PM
Timothy Myers, conductor
North Carolina Master Chorale

Bach: Selected choruses from the Mass in B minor
Michael Torke: December
Eric Whitacre: Lux Aurumque
Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a theme by Tallis
Handel: Selected choruses from Messiah


FRI/SAT, JAN 6-7, 2017 | 8PM
Christoph König, conductor
Jeremy Denk, piano

Schreker: Intermezzo
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 4
Brahms: Symphony No. 1

FRI/SAT, JAN 27-28, 2017 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Clara Yang, piano
Joélle Harvey, vocalist

Mozart: Overture to The Abduction from the Seraglio
Mozart: "Basta, vincesti—Ah, non lasciarmi"
Mozart: Rondo in A Major for Piano and Orchestra
Mozart: "Ch'io mi scordi di te—Non temer, amato bene”
Mozart: Exsultate, jubilate
Mozart: Symphony #39
Mozart: Marriage of Figaro: “Un moto di gioia”


Valentine’s Weekend
FRI/SAT, FEB 10-11, 2017 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor

Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture
Timo Andres: New Work
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade

FRI/SAT, MAR 3-4, 2017 | 8PM
Karina Canellakis, conductor
Samuel Gold, viola
Brian Reagin, violin

Jennifer Higdon: Three Selections from Dance Card
Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante
Sibelius: Symphony No. 5


FRI/SAT, APR 7-8, 2017 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Nicholas Phan, tenor
Stephen Powell, baritone
Tamara Wilson, soprano
North Carolina Master Chorale
Raleigh Boychoir

Britten: War Requiem


FRI/SAT, APR 21-22, 2017 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
North Carolina Master Chorale

Grant Llewellyn, the North Carolina Symphony, the North Carolina Master Chorale, and guest vocalists join forces on one stage to perform the glorious “Ode to Joy.”


FRI/SAT, APR 28-29, 2017 | 8PM
Tito Muñoz, conductor
Shai Wosner, piano

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 21
Schubert: Symphony No. 9 “The Great”


FRI/SAT, MAY 19-20, 2017 | 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Augustin Hadelich, violin

Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto
Shostakovich: Symphony No. 5




Meymandi Concert Hall
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh
Friday Favorites Series concerts begin at Noon.



FRI, OCT, 7, 2016 | NOON
Grant Llewellyn, conductor

Dvořák: Serenade for Winds
Dvořák: Symphony No. 5


FRI, NOV 11, 2016 | NOON
Jeannette Sorrell, conductor
Elizabeth Phelps, violin
Jacqueline Saed Wolborsky, violin

Handel: Selections from Water Music
Bach: Double Violin Concerto
Vivaldi: La Folia “Madness”
Mozart: Ballet Music from Idomeneo


FRI, DEC 2, 2016 | NOON
Timothy Myers, conductor
North Carolina Master Chorale

Bach: Selected choruses from the Mass in B minor
Vaughan Williams: Fantasia on a theme by Tallis
Handel: Selected choruses from Messiah


FRI, FEB 3, 2017 | NOON
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Jinjoo Cho, violin

Mozart: Overture to The Abduction from the Seraglio
Mozart: Violin Concerto #4
Mozart: Eine kleine Nachtmusik
Mozart: Symphony No. 39


FRI, FEB 24, 2017 | NOON
William Henry Curry, conductor
Joseph Horowitz, narrator

Ives: Unanswered Question
William Henry Curry: World Premiere
Foster: “Camptown Races”
Ives: Symphony No. 2


FRI, MAY 12, 2017 | NOON
David Glover, conductor

Schubert: Symphony No. 9




Meymandi Concert Hall
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh
Special Concerts start times vary - see listings



WED, NOV 23, 2016 | 3PM
David Glover, conductor
Triangle Youth Ballet
Raleigh Boychoir

Take a break from preparing the feast the day before Thanksgiving and bring the whole family to this one hour performance that features music from Babes in Toyland, The Polar Express, and  Frozen.


FRI, NOV 25, 2016 | 7:30PM
SAT, NOV 26, 2016 | 3PM
David Glover, conductor
Triangle Youth Ballet
Raleigh Boychoir

The North Carolina Symphony’s Holiday Pops is a musical tradition that will fill your heart with cheer. Enjoy all your holiday favorites and our popular sing-a-long. Be sure to visit Santa in the lobby before the performance.


FRI, DEC 23, 2016 | 7:00PM
David Glover, conductor
Raleigh Children’s Christmas Chorus
Jeremy Tucker, director

Young singers and the North Carolina Symphony join forces for this special performance of sacred celebration.


SAT, DEC 31, 2016 | 8PM
David Glover, conductor
N.C. Jazz Repertory Orchestra
James Ketch, Music Director

Ring in the New Year with beautiful melodies from Vienna, and Big Band sounds. 


WED, MAR 1, 2017 | 7:30PM
Karina Canellakis, conductor

The sensational Lang Lang returns to Meymandi Concert Hall for one night only to perform with the North Carolina Symphony.


SAT, MAR 11, 2017 | 8PM
David Glover, conductor
Caroline Shaw, violin

Ward: Jubilation Overture
Caroline Shaw: Lo
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4


FRI, MAR 24, 2017
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Caroline Shaw, violin

Ward: Jubilation Overture
Caroline Shaw: Lo
Mason Bates: Rusty Air in Carolina
Sarah Kirkland Snider: Hiraeth
Ward: City of Oaks




Meymandi Concert Hall
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh
Pops Evening Series concerts begin at 8pm. Matinee performances begin at 3pm.



FRI/SAT, OCT 14-15, 2016 | 8PM
David Glover, conductor

Hooray for Hollywood!  Join the Symphony on an epic journey with the great film composers.  Track The Pink Panther with Henry Mancini, experience Vertigo with Bernard Herrmann, and travel the across the world and beyond with Ennio Morricone, Hans Zimmer and John Williams.


FRI, DEC 9, 2016 | 8PM
SAT, DEC 10, 2016 | 3PM & 8PM
David Glover, conductor

China Forbes returns! One of the world’s favorite cocktail, jazz, and world pop ensembles returns to Meymandi Concert Hall. Pink Martini delivers a festive holiday concert featuring beloved songs from around the globe. Led by bandleader Thomas Lauderdale, the “little orchestra” draws inspiration from music all over the world, crossing genres of classical, jazz and old-fashioned pop.


FRI, JAN 20, 2017 | 8PM
SAT, JAN 21, 2016 | 3PM & 8PM
Jack Everly, conductor
Jonathan Frakes, host

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, experience an out-of-this-world concert conducted by the world-renowned Jack Everly. Hosted by Jonathan Frakes, well known as Captain William T. Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Also featuring music from Star Wars, 2001: A Space Odyssey, E.T., Close Encounters of the Third Kind and of course Star Trek.


FRI/SAT, FEB 17-18, 2017 | 8PM
Stuart Chafetz, conductor
Dee Donasco, vocalist
John Cudia, vocalist

Romantic orchestral favorites and timeless love songs from your favorite Broadway musicals and films. Stuart Chafetz leads the Symphony and guest singers in hits from Phantom of the Opera, West Side Story, Gone with the Wind and more.


FRI/SAT, MAR 17-18, 2017 | 8PM 
David Glover, conductor
Jason Alexander, vocalist

Tony Award-winning actor, Jason Alexander, best known for his role as George Costanza on Seinfeld, is coming to North Carolina for an evening of laughs and entertainment as he reminisces about his hilarious journey to stardom. The veteran Broadway singer, comedian, and dancer will perform a variety of hits from the Music Man, Pippin, and Merrily We Roll Along. Join us for a night of fun and music!


FRI, MAY 5, 2017 | 8PM
SAT, MAY 6, 2017 | 3PM & 8PM
Grant Llewellyn, conductor
Carl Forsman, director
UNC School of the Arts

Actors from the UNC School of the Arts join Grant Llewellyn and the NC Symphony for a semi-staged production of this comic masterpiece that features tender-hearted pirates and the brave daughter of a modern Major-General.




Meymandi Concert Hall
Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., Raleigh
Young People’s Concerts take place at 1pm and 4pm.



SAT, OCT 29, 2016 | 1PM & 4PM
Christopher James Lees, conductor

Calling all dark and light sides, join us for family fun concert featuring the music of Star Wars and more. Be sure to dress as your favorite hero, villain or Star Wars character and enter our costume contest! Join us for all the pre-concert activities, including face painting and our popular Instrument Zoo!


SAT, FEB 4, 2017 | 1PM & 4PM
Classical Kids Live!

The musical story tells of a chance meeting on the streets of New York City between a poor newspaper boy and composer George Gershwin. A friendship develops as they explore the vast melting pot of American music and discover the key to unlocking the boy’s own musical potential. Selections include music from Porgy & Bess, An American in Paris, Cuban Overture, Rhapsody in Blue and more.


SAT, APR 22, 2017 | 1PM & 4PM
David Glover, conductor
TBD, narrator
TBD, soprano
TBD, boy soprano
Triangle Youth Ballet

Dr. Seuss' classics "The Sneetches" and “Green Eggs & Ham” come alive in this megastoopendous musical production! Youngsters of all ages will enjoy fantastical tales, a full orchestra, vocalists, dancers, and plenty of fantabulous fun for the whole family!



About the North Carolina Symphony

Founded in 1932, the North Carolina Symphony performs over 175 concerts annually to adults and school children in more than 50 North Carolina counties. An entity of the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, the orchestra employs 66 professional musicians, under the artistic leadership of Music Director and Conductor Grant Llewellyn, Resident Conductor William Henry Curry, and Associate Conductor David Glover.


Headquartered in downtown Raleigh’s spectacular Meymandi Concert Hall at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts and an outdoor summer venue at Koka Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, N.C., the Symphony performs about 60 concerts annually in the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary metropolitan area. It holds regular concerts in Fayetteville, New Bern, Southern Pines and Wilmington — as well as individual concerts in many other North Carolina communities throughout the year — and conducts one of the most extensive education programs of any U.S. orchestra.


Copyright © 2001-2017 North Carolina Symphony | Web Design & Development by ClickCulture