Romantic Evening at the Symphony

Emotions are running high at the Idaho Falls Symphony as they prepare a beguiling concert. On Saturday, November 19th, audiences will be treated to an alluring and highly romantic program called “Love and Legends.” Taking advantage of the intimate acoustics of the Colonial Theater at the Willard Arts Center, music director Thomas Heuser will lead a performance of music by Jean Sibelius, William Grant Still, Richard Wagner, and Tchaikovsky’s beloved Serenade for Strings. 

“Our musicians thrive in every situation,” remarks Dr. Heuser, “ and for this program, we have a chance to feature our Symphony strings. The Tchaikovsky Serenade includes everything we love about music, from virtuosic, vivacious rhythms to the most gorgeous melodies ever composed. We are so fortunate to feature this exquisite music alongside rarely-performed works for chamber orchestra.”

Given the smaller size of the Colonial Theater stage, Dr. Heuser planned music for smaller forces, which offers a distinct contrast to much of this Blockbuster season. Upcoming performances include a full National Geographic movie score, the “Organ Symphony” of Camille Saint-Saéns, and Beethoven’s monumental Ninth Symphony. None of those concerts would fit at the Colonial Theater, but schedules necessitated the shift in venue, and so the orchestra adapted to the performance space.

Each of the works on the “Love and Legends” program has a story to tell, which ties in with this season’s thematic focus: “Fantasy and Folklore.” For example, William Grant Still’s “Mother and Child” for string orchestra is based on a 1932 chalk drawing by the African-American artist Sargent Claude Johnson, which shows a weary mother, resting her head in her hand and holding a small child in her lap. The music can be understood as an intimate portrait of maternal love. Similarly, Richard Wagner composed his symphonic poem “Siegfried Idyll” as a gift to his wife on the birth of their son. The music depicts the waking of their sleeping child, the mother Costanza’s gentle lullaby, and visions of an optimistic future that the parents hope for their child.

Tickets and information about the Idaho Falls Symphony’s “Love and Legends” concert can be found on their website: The concert begins with a free Pre-Concert Talk, starting at 6:30pm in the Colonial Theater and hosted by Dr. Heuser, followed by the concert at 7:30pm. The concert will also be available via Live Broadcast and viewable on-demand for an extended period after the performance.

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