By Lina Broydo
SoundBox: Nostalgia by Esa-Pekka Salonen with the Amazing
San Francisco Symphony
Nostalgia is a longing to return home, but what if that home isn’t there anymore? In SoundBox: Nostalgia, three composers look to a past that may or may not exist, while opening new portals to the future. SoundBox series returns for a seventh season in 2021, in a new digital format with eclectic programs curated by Esa-Pekka Salonen, Julia Bullock, Destiny Muhammad, Nico Muhly, and Claire Chase.
Kicking off the series on February, SF Symphony Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen curates and conducts an evocative program titled Nostalgia, featuring works composed in the last decade including Freya Waley-Cohen’s Conjure, Missy Mazzoli’s Vespers for Violin, and Caroline Shaw’s Entr’acte. On March 11, SF Symphony Collaborative Partner and soprano Julia Bullock presents a program titled Lineage—an audio and visual snapshot of how lineage can inform, influence, impact, and express itself in a musical context. Bullock’s SoundBox program, originally scheduled to take place last Spring and postponed due to the pandemic, has been adapted from live performance to a digital format.
Bullock comments, “SoundBox is an invitation for musicians to share their artistic interests, and to have them realized in an immersive visual space. Whatever ignites a person’s artistic interests is unique to that individual, but it’s often a reflection of where they have come from and encapsulates where that person envisions themselves going. In short, it has something to do with acknowledging one’s lineage and allowing those influences to be consciously connected.” In addition to curating the program, Bullock performs her signature rendition of Nina Simone’s “Revolution” and joins members of the SF Symphony and Chorus in performances of Nina Simone’s “Images,” fellow Collaborative Partner Esperanza Spalding’s “Little Fly,” Aruán Ortiz’s “Mompouana,” selections from Francis Poulenc’s Rapsodie Nègre, and Ricky Ian Gordon’s Litany.
Other works on the program include J.S. Bach’s Invention No. 13 in A minor featuring pianist Sarah Cahill, Coleridge-Taylor Perkinson’s “Plain Blue/s” from Blues Forms, George Walker’s Lyric for Strings, selections from Elizabeth Ogonek’s In Silence and Orpheus Suite (after Rilke), and Hildegard von Bingen’s O frodens virga. In an in-depth interview published recently, KQED comments, “Bullock’s superpower lies in reaching across centuries and continents, and feeling into the love, yearning and loss at the core of the human experience.” SoundBox continues on April 15 with Patterns, a program exploring minimalism in music, curated and conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen, with performances by SF Symphony musicians and pianist Elizabeth Dorman.
Opera San Jose Orchestrates Virtual Valentine’s Day Love Telegrams
Looking for the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for that music lover in your life? Choose from a selection of classic love songs, beautifully performed by the Opera San José Resident Artists.
The repertoire of popular romantic songs include: “‘Till There Was You” by Maya Kherani; “La vie en rose” by Ashley Dixon; “Be My Love” by Carlos Enrique Santelli; “As Time Goes By” by Eugene Brancoveanu; and “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Nathan Stark.
Accompanied by pianist Veronika Agranov-Dafoe the telegrams will be recorded and available in time for Valentine’s Day including your personalized message!
Cost: $85 donation
Photo courtesy of Opera San Jose
SF 49ers Launch the Virtual Tour of Team Museum at Levi’s Stadium
Can not travel to Tampa, Florida for the biggest football game on earth? Don’t despair! Join the 5-times Super Bowl
Champions SF 49ers on the virtual tour of their incredible team museum at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.
With the Zoom tech connection the 11 galleries filled with historic and unforgettable photos, films, sculptures, trophies and the unforgettable moments with Joe Montana to Dwight Clark “Catch” will be available for you to see, learn, wow and remines about the magic of the triumphant SF 49ers 5 Super Bowl Championships right at the comfort of your home.
Enjoy the SF 49ers team Museum as they are marking their 75th anniversary.
Check it out at Levis-stadium.com/museum-virtual-tour
Photo courtesy of Terrell Lloyd
Virtual World Premieres Program from San Francisco Ballet
February 11 and March 4, 2021
Ballets by Dwight Rhoden, Mark Morris, Alexei Ratmansky and Yuri Possokhov round out each triple-bill program streaming during the 2021 Digital Season. Each premiere has been filmed under strict safety protocols in compliance with the San Francisco Department of Public Health guidelines, which protect artists, production crews, and the greater public.
Myles Thatcher’s new ballet is set in San Francisco locations including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Heroes Grove at Golden Gate Park, Yerba Buena Gardens, and the stage of the War Memorial Opera House, SF Ballet’s performance home.
Thatcher’s work emphasizes saturated colors in its design and explores parallels between consuming art—as one might at an art museum—and creating it.
Mark Morris’ Sandpaper Ballet, created in 1999 with costumes by Isaac Mizrahi, is a rare work in the repertory that sets neoclassical ballet to “funny” music—in this case, nostalgic pop-orchestral tunes by Leroy Anderson: “Sleigh Ride,” “Fiddle-Faddle,” “The Typewriter,” and more. Do not miss this absolutely fascinating, whimsical, charming and awestriking brilliant and sparkling jewel in the world of dance.
San Francisco Ballet, long recognized for pushing boundaries in dance, has enjoyed a long and rich tradition of artistic “firsts” since its founding in 1933, including performing the first American productions of Swan Lake and Nutcracker, as well as the first 20th-century American Coppélia. SF Ballet is one of the three largest ballet companies in the United States and currently presents more than 100 performances annually, both locally and internationally.
The mission of SF Ballet is to share its joy of dance with the widest possible audience—in its community and worldwide—and to provide the highest caliber of dance training in its School.
Under the direction of Helgi Tomasson, the Company has achieved an international reputation as one of the preeminent ballet companies in the world.
Photos courtesy of SF Ballet