Symphony Announces Holiday Concert and Additional Season Concerts


SAN FRANCISCO, CA, June 21, 2012 – Concerts by Wilson Phillips and Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, and holiday concerts with Pink Martini, Chris Botti, Judy Collins, The Count Basie Orchestra, and Peter & the Wolf with narrator John Lithgow are newly added highlights of the 2012-13 schedule at Davies Symphony Hall, announced today by the San Francisco Symphony. New additions to the holiday concert lineup also include the annual Colors of Christmas shows with Peabo Bryson, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr., James Ingram, and Stephanie Mills; Handel’s Messiah with the Orchestra and SFS Chorus; Mariachi Sol de México de Jóse Hernández; screenings of The Snowman animated film with live orchestra accompaniment; ‘Twas the Night and Deck the Hall concerts; and the 2012 New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball. Vocalist Bobby McFerrin performs his “Spirit You All” program March 30.

Tickets go on sale for all added special and holiday concerts Tuesday, June 26 at 10 a.m. at, by phone at 415-864-6000, and at the Davies Symphony Hall box office on Grove Street between Franklin Street and Van Ness Avenue. Individual tickets for the SF Symphony Opening Gala Concert September 19, with violinist Joshua Bell joining Michael Tilson Thomas and the Orchestra, are also on sale June 26. Individual tickets for all other concerts in the Symphony’s 2012-13 season, which begins September 5, go on sale Monday, July 23 at 8 a.m. at the box office and 10 a.m. at www.sfsymphony.organd at 415-864-6000.

The Symphony’s holiday concerts include several particularly suited for children and families to attend together, with several offering half-price tickets for children 17 and under. San Francisco Symphony musicians and special guests perform two Deck the Hall family concerts of holiday music December 2, followed by entertainment, refreshments, and arts and crafts for children. On December 8, the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra will perform its ever-popular Peter and the Wolf afternoon concerts, featuring John Lithgow as narrator. Ragnar Bohlinleads soprano Joélle Harvey, mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson-Cano, tenor Andrew Stenson, bass-baritone Michael Sumuel, and the San Francisco Symphony Chorusand Orchestra in three performances of Handel’s Messiah on December 13, 14, and 15. The animated children’s film The Snowman will be screened December 21 at Mondavi Center at UC Davis and December 22 at Davies Symphony Hall, with live accompaniment by the San Francisco Symphony and the Pacific Boychoir. Mariachi Sol de México de Jóse Hernándezbrings Mexican and traditional Christmas favorites to Davies Symphony Hall December 21. SFS Chorus Director Ragnar Bohlinleads soprano Lisa Vroman, and members of the Orchestra and Chorus in three ’Twas the Night Christmas concerts, featuring favorite carols and sing-alongs, December 22, 23, and 24. The lobby of Davies Symphony Hall will be transformed for the holidays into an evergreen wonderland with towering trees, each one uniquely decorated with sparkling decorations made by kids from local schools and volunteers from community groups.

The female trio of Wilson Phillips performs covers of Beach Boys and The Mamas and the Papas songs and their own hits on November 17. Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings bring their gritty soul and funk on November 24. On November 28 and 29, multicultural orchestra Pink Martini and vocalist China Forbes return to San Francisco for two holiday concerts with the Symphony. On November 30 and December 1, trumpeter Chris Botti performs a holiday program, playing both with his band and with the Orchestra. The annual Colors of Christmas concerts return to Davies Symphony Hall as vocalists Peabo Bryson, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr., James Ingram, and Stephanie Mills sing Christmas songs and their own pop hits on December 10, 11, and 12. On December 16, The Count Basie Orchestra performs holiday hits, jazz standards, and swing. Folk legend Judy Collins sings with the Orchestra December 19.

On December 31, revelers at the city’s most elegant New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball take over Davies Symphony Hall and count down to 2013, with music from the San Francisco Symphony, soprano Heidi Stober, and Dance Through Time, and dancing to big band music with The Peter Mintun Orchestra, swinging standards with The Martini Brothers, and Neil Diamond covers by Super Diamond.



Wednesday, September 19 at 8 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

Single tickets go on sale June 26 for Michael Tilson Thomas leading the San Francisco Symphony and special guest violinist Joshua Bell in the Symphony’s 2012-13 Opening Gala concert. Bell performs Chausson’s Poème and Saint-Saëns’ Introduction and Rondo capriccioso. The Orchestra also performs selections from Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette and Ravel’s Boléro. This black-tie evening begins with a sparkling wine reception. Following the concert, celebrate at the after-party with live music, dancing, and savory treats from the Bay Area’s finest eateries. Proceeds benefit the San Francisco Symphony’s education and community programs, providing music education to more than 75,000 Bay Area children each year. Concert tickets include access to the Opening Gala Promenade and post-concert parties.



Saturday, November 17 at 8 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The four-time Grammy® nominated group Wilson Phillips takes the stage at Davies Symphony Hall, performing songs from their new release Dedicated, which features covers of The Beach Boys and The Mamas and the Papas. One of the best-selling female groups of all time, Wilson Phillips is Carnie Wilson and Wendy Wilson (daughters of Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys) and Chynna Phillips (daughter of John Phillips and Michelle Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas). The trio reinvents the songs of their parents and perform their beloved hits “California Dreamin’,” “Wouldn’t It Be Nice,” “Good Vibrations,” and more, as well as their own best-known songs. In spring 2012, the lifelong friends starred in Wilson Phillips: Still Holding On, a TV Guide Network reality show documenting the group’s adventures in and out of the recording studio.



Saturday, November 24 at 8 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

Steeped in gospel, soul, and funk, this nine-piece Brooklyn collective has continued to electrify fans the world over with its authentic, heartfelt sound. Their four critically-acclaimed albums recall an honest, analog sound reminiscent of Motown and Stax Records, and have thrust Jones, a native of Augusta, GA, and crew into the multimedia limelight. Their live show has attracted collaborators including David Byrne, They Might Be Giants, Rufus Wainwright, Lou Reed, and Michael Bublé. The Dap-Kings’ musical chops have also been in high-demand by artists including Al Green. Jones celebrated her silver-screen debut in the Denzel Washington-led film, The Great Debaters, in which she acted, sang, and recorded the majority of the movie’s soundtrack. In June 2012, the band appeared at the Bonnaroo Festival, and heads next to Europe for a month-long tour, including dates in Denmark, Germany, Belgium, France, Spain, Turkey, Italy and Norway.



Wednesday, November 28 and Thursday, November 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The Portland, Oregon-based “little orchestra” was created in 1994 by Harvard graduate and classically trained pianist Thomas M. Lauderdale to play at political fundraisers for progressive causes. Fronted by multilingual and multitalented China Forbes, the band plays a repertoire that consists of an eclectic blend of 1930’s Cuban dance orchestra, classical chamber ensemble, Brazilian street band, and Japanese film noir. In 2010 the band released Joy To The World—a festive, multi-denominational holiday album featuring songs from around the globe. Its previous recordings–Hang On Little Tomato in 2004, Hey Eugene! in 2007, and Splendor In The Grass in 2009—have been popular worldwide; the group made its European debut at the Cannes Film Festival and in the years following went on to tour Europe, Asia, and the United States. Equally at home performing its eclectic repertoire on concert stages and in smoky bars, Pink Martini draws a wildly diverse crowd. The ensemble made its orchestral debut with the Oregon Symphony Orchestra in 1999 and has since performed with other orchestras across the country including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Boston Pops, the National Symphony, and the BBC Concert Orchestra. Donato Cabrera conducts.


Friday, November 30 and Saturday, December 1 at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

Trumpeter Chris Botti performs material from his new album, Impressions, with his band and the Orchestra, conducted by Brett Kelly. Impressions expresses Botti’s love for rich, evocative melodies across a wide variety of genres, and includes music by Chopin, Gershwin, Harold Arlen, R. Kelly, Randy Newman, Bob Thiele and David Weiss, Ivan Lins, Astor Piazzolla, and Cesar Portillo de la Luz, as well as a pair of songs co-written by Botti with Herbie Hancock and David Foster. Botti was persuaded to make a lifetime commitment to the trumpet when at 12 he heard Miles Davis play “My Funny Valentine.” After attending Indiana University, and studying with David Baker, trumpet teacher Bill Adam, Woody Shaw and saxophonist George Coleman, he spent his early career crafting his skills in the Buddy Rich Big Band and playing with artists from Frank Sinatra to Natalie Cole and Joni Mitchell. Botti played extensively with Paul Simon, and had an especially creative association with Sting. His records have sold more than those by any jazz instrumentalist in the world.



Sunday, December 2 at 11:00 and 3:00 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The San Francisco Symphony’s annual Deck the Hall event celebrates the holiday season with a magical stage show designed for children ages three to 10. Members of the cast of Beach Blanket Babylon,
Dance Through Time, San Francisco Boys Chorus, and SF Jazz High School All-Stars Orchestra perform. Inaugurated more than 30 years ago by the late Louise M. Davies, this holiday classic is a Symphony tradition. The post-show party in the lobbies includes a variety of entertainment, arts and craft activities for children, and refreshments. Special Angel Packages are available with premium concert seating and a pre-concert reception with gourmet treats, holiday crafts, and special time with Santa Claus for the kids.




Saturday, December 8 at 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

Actor John Lithgow joins the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra as narrator in two performances of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. The Orchestra will also perform Lithgow’s The Bandshell Next to the Zoo, and festive holiday songs for the whole family to sing. SFSYO Music Director and conductor Donato Cabrera conducts.


Peabo Bryson, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr., James Ingram, and Stephanie Mills with the San Francisco Symphony

Monday, December 10, Tuesday, December 11, and

Wednesday, December 12 at 8:00 p.m. in Davies Symphony Hall

Peabo Bryson, Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr, James Ingram and Stephanie Mills celebrate at the annual Colors of Christmas concerts with the San Francisco Symphony, performing traditional Christmas favorites and their individual hits. Bryson’s soft-rock/R&B hits include the Top 10 hit “If Ever You’re in My Arms Again,” the Grammy® Award-winning “Beauty and the Beast” (with Celine Dion), and “A Whole New World (Aladdin’s Theme)” with Regina Belle. McCoo and Davis are best known for their hits with The 5th Dimension, including “Aquarius,” “Wedding Bell Blues,” and “Last Night (I Didn’t Get to Sleep)” and R&B crooner Ingram had major hits with songs including “Baby, Come to Me,” “I Don’t Have the Heart,” and “Yah Mo B There.”


HANDEL’S MESSIAH With the San Francisco Symphony and SF Symphony Chorus

Thursday, December 13, Friday, December 14, and Saturday, December 15
at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The Grammy® Award-winning SF Symphony Chorus, conducted by Chorus Director Ragnar Bohlin, is joined by soloists Joélle Harvey, soprano; Jennifer Johnson-Cano, mezzo-soprano; Andrew Stenson, tenor; Michael Sumuel, bass-baritone; and the Orchestra in these holiday performances of Handel’s glorious Messiah oratorio.



Sunday, December 16 at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The Count Basie Orchestra embodies swing, style, rhythm and soul, and the ensemble brings its classic brand of big band jazz to Davies Symphony Hall for a night of jazz and pop standards, and its unique, foot-tapping take on favorite Christmas carols.



Wednesday, December 19 at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The folk and pop vocalist and songwriter Judy Collins joins the San Francisco Symphony for a performance of her timeless songs and hits as well as some holiday favorites. Collins’ Grammy® award-winning contemplative songs, paired with her creamy voice and heartfelt delivery, have been entertaining and enthralling fans for many years. In this special holiday performance, Collins takes the audience on a journey showcasing her legendary, wide-ranging vocal talents, performing ballads from her vast songbook, along with special holiday songs, all delivered in her singular style.


Friday, December 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

The 14-piece Grammy®-nominated ensemble Mariachi Sol de Méxicode Jóse Hernández returns to Davies Symphony Hall for a colorful celebration of Mexico’s Christmas traditions. Mariachi Sol de México has performed with artists including Selena, Juan Gabriel, Jose Feliciano, Luis Miguel, Vikki Carr, Rocio Durcal, Lucha Villa, Maria Conchita Alonso, Paloma San Basilio, Emilio Navaira, Lola Beltran, Vicente Fernandez, The Beach Boys, and Willie Nelson. The music of Mariachi Sol de México has been heard on the soundtracks of Sea Biscuit, The Old Gringo, American Me, Don Juan de Marco, Disney’s The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit, A Million to Juan, and Beverly Hills Chihuahua. They have recorded more than a dozen CDs, including the Latin Grammy-nominated Tequila con Limón and the 25th Anniversario Jóse Hernández y Su Mariachi Sol de México, also nominated for a Grammy® Award.



Animated film and sing-along with the San Francisco Symphony

Friday, December 21 at 7:00 p.m. at Mondavi Center, UC Davis,
Saturday, December 22 at 11:00 a.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

This charming animated 26-minute film (Dianne Jackson, 1982) tells the tale of a young boy’s poignant friendship with a snowman. The San Francisco Symphony performs the score to this family-friendly movie, led by Resident Conductor Donato Cabrerawith the Pacific Boychoir. After the movie, hear Christmas favorites performed by the Orchestra. The audience is invited to sing along with the Orchestra to some great holiday chestnuts.


Carols and sing-alongs with members of the SF Symphony Chorus and Orchestra

Saturday, December 22 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, December 23 at 4:00 p.m.
 Monday, December 24 at 2:00 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

This special Christmas concert offers conductor and SF Symphony Chorus Director Ragnar Bohlinleading soprano Lisa Vroman, members of the San Francisco Symphony, and members of the SFS Chorus in beloved Christmas carols and favorite childhood Christmas songs, plus audience sing-alongs and traditional favorites.



Monday, December 31
Doors open and pre-concert entertainment begins at 8:00 p.m.
Orchestra concert begins at 9:00 p.m.

Ring in the New Year at the city’s most elegant celebration, the New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball with the San Francisco Symphony. The December 31 event stars the San Francisco Symphony, conductor Michael Francis, soprano Heidi Stober, and members of Dance Through Time. Everyone attending the event receives a complimentary mask as they enter the beautifully decorated lobby. Beginning at 8 p.m., The Martini Brothersentertain and perform their “swingin’ cocktail music” in the lobby. Starting at 9 p.m., the Orchestra performs polkas, waltzes, and dances onstage in Davies Symphony Hall. Following the concert, guests are invited to celebrate and dance on stage to The Peter Mintun Orchestra. Super Diamond, covering the hits and gems of the one and only Neil Diamond, entertains in the First Tier lobby. Enjoy complimentary sparkling wine and desserts as the clock strikes midnight, 2,013 colorful balloons cascade from the ceiling, and the crowd welcomes in 2013.

A special pre-concert dinner package includes a cocktail reception beginning at 6 p.m. followed by a sumptuous three-course dinner (wine included) in the lobby of the War Memorial Opera House. The dinner package also includes sparkling wine served in the Loge Level lobby at intermission. Dinner packages begin at $160. Call the Davies Symphony Hall box office for more details on the special pre-concert dinners at (415) 864-6000, or visit


Saturday, March 30, 2013 at 8 p.m. at Davies Symphony Hall

With a four-octave range and a vast array of vocal techniques, Bobby McFerrin is no mere singer; he is a true musical Renaissance man, a vocal explorer who has combined jazz, folk and a multitude of world music influences–choral, a cappella, and classical music–with his own ingredients. A ten-time Grammy Award winner, he is also a world-renowned classical conductor, the creator of “Don’t Worry Be Happy,” one of the most popular songs of the late 20th century, and a passionate spokesman for music education. McFerrin sings his “Spirit You All” program, an homage to his father (the opera singer Robert McFerrin, Sr.) and the generations of Americans who sang of our shared joy and pain through the songs commonly known as Negro spirituals. His recordings have sold over 20 million copies, and his collaborations, including those with Yo-Yo Ma, Chick Corea, and Herbie Hancock, have established him as an ambassador of both the classical and jazz worlds. As a conductor, he has worked with the New York Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Vienna Philharmonic.

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