2018 Calendar

The Philadelphia Orchestra

Festive Fireworks

WednesdayAugust 18:00 PM



Stéphane Denève, conductor
Mayara Pineiro and Sterling Baca, Principal Dancers of Pennsylvania Ballet


Rachmaninoff   Symphonic Dances
Connesson   Maslenitsa
Minkus   Pas de deux, from Don Quixote
Tchaikovsky   1812 Overture

Program Notes

  • Pre-Performance Talk, 7pm – see below for details
  • The Philadelphia Orchestra, 8pm
  • Freihofer’s Live at the Jazz Bar (Hall of Springs Jazz Bar), 10pmlearn more

Opening Night of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s August residency will continue the new tradition of featuring Tchaikovsky’s famed 1812 Overture, complete with fireworks, live cannon fire and dancers from Pennsylvania Ballet, as the kick-off to the 2018 orchestra season.

Pre-Peformance Talk, 7pm

30 minute talk with Stéphane Dèneve, conductor

Pre-Performance Talks are free for performance ticket holders thanks to generous support from Siena College


You must be attending the performance following the Pre-Performance Talk to attend the talk.

Fun facts:

  • The 1812 Overture was popularized in the US due in large part to a thrilling performance by the Boston Pops in 1974. In an effort to increase ticket sales, conductor Arthur Fiedler choreographed fireworks, cannons, and a steeple bell choir. Since then, it’s become a tradition to perform the overture on Independence Day.
  • Contrary to popular belief, Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture tells the story of Napoleon’s retreat from Russia in 1812, not the USA’s victory over the British in the War of 1812.
  •  The score is a fairly literal account of the events that occurred during the war, beginning with the Russian Synod calling its people to pray for safety and ending with the French army’s retreat.
  • Despite its success, Tchaikovsky loathed his 1812 Overture. He thought it had no artistic merit and condemned it for being too loud, adding that it was obviously written without warmth or love.

Read more here:

Listen here: https://open.spotify.com/track/00KEBLDUo17RncOXs9KWZ2

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