Last month the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra (SFSYO), led by Wattis Foundation Music Director Donato Cabrera, gave the first of two concerts previewing the works that will be performed during their forthcoming six-concert eighteen-day European tour. This month the second of those concerts will be given shortly before the group departs, making it a “Bon Voyage” event. The soloist for this event will be violinist Elena Urioste, born in the United States and recently selected as a BBC New Generation Artist. She will perform Max Bruch’s Opus 26 (first) violin concerto in G minor, which will be played by Sergey Khachatryan and Renaud Capuçon at different venues during the tour.
The second half of the program will be devoted entirely to Hector Berlioz’ Opus 14 “Symphonie fantastique.” However, the music that will particularly distinguish SFSYO on their tour will probably be Mason Bates “Garages of the Valley.” Over the past years Bates seems to have distinguished himself by composing a series of what may be called “technology tone poems,” one of which, “Alternative Energy,” was included last year on a recording by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. (One might think of Bates’ interest in different aspects of technology as a parallel to Ottorino Respighi’s interest in different aspects of the city of Rome.) In “Garages of the Valley” Bates shifts his attention to the Bay Area, including the one-car garage in Palo Alto where William Redington Hewlett and David Packard built their first electronic test equipment that would lead to the creation of the Hewlett-Packard company and the emergence of Silicon Valley as a worldwide center for technology innovation.
There will be only one performance of this program in Davies Symphony Hall, which will take place at 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 20. Tickets prices are $15 for general admission and $52 for reserved seating. Tickets may be purchased through the event page for this program on the San Francisco Symphony Web site, as well as the Davies Box Office on Grove Street between Van Ness Avenue and Franklin Street or by calling 415-864-6000.
For those interested, the dates and venues of the six tour concerts will be as follows:
- Thursday, June 25, Conservatory of Music, Milan, Italy
- Saturday, June 27, Teatro Nuovo Giovanni da Udine, Udine, Italy
- Tuesday, June 30, Festival Hall for the Audi Sommerkonzerte, Ingolstadt, Germany
- Saturday, July 4, Berliner Philharmonie, Berlin, Germany
- Sunday, July 5, Concertgebouw, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- Wednesday, July 8, Smetana Hall, Prague, Czech Republic
The Bruch concerto will be performed at all of these venues. Capuçon will be the soloist in Amsterdam, and Khachatryan will perform at the other five venues.