Auburn Symphony’s 2015-16 season: an energetic program

“THE PRESENCE OF AN ORCHESTRA often is an indicator of a community’s strength,” according to the League of American Orchestras. “They fuel local economies, attract new business development and educate young people.”

About 27 years ago, Placer County leaders had the foresight to start a community orchestra: the Auburn Symphony. In its first season, the orchestra performed one concert, appropriately titled “The Birth of an Orchestra.”

Since then, the Auburn Symphony has grown to include three Masterworks series concerts, a Messiah sing-along, a free Symphony in the Park concert in Auburn, and a performance at the Mondavi Center in Davis. The group also hosts a young artist competition.

The Auburn Symphony’s 2015-16 season— called “Stories of Heroism and Passion”—is an energetic program. It includes beloved arrangements, such as Copeland’s Billy the Kid Suite and Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, as well as music from Rachmaninoff, Mahler, Beethoven, Strauss and others.

Guest artists include violinist Ji in Yang, a young international sensation; cellist Tina Guo, a local crowd favorite; violinist Yōsuke Kawasaki, concertmaster of Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra; and pianist Richard Glazier, an expert on the music of George and Ira Gershwin.

“Our virtuoso guest artists lend their own sense of heroic adventure to our Masterworks series, and a stellar vocal quartet will enhance our traditional Messiah sing-along,” says Peter Jaffe, the music director and conductor.

Jaffe, now in his third season with the Auburn Symphony, has served as the Stockton Symphony’s music director since 1995 and appears with Symphony Silicon Valley. Placer County Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery is the Auburn Symphony’s president.


• Masterworks I: Adventure and Artistry Oct. 17-18. Rossini, Overture to William Tell; Barber’s Violin Concerto; and Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 in G major. Guest artist Ji in Yang.

• Messiah Sing-Along Dec. 8. An Auburn tradition with audience participation.

• Masterworks II, Dance Inspirations Jan. 30-31. Copeland’s
Billy the Kid Suite; Saint-Saëns’ Cello Concerto; and Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances.
Guest artist Tina Guo.

The concerts are held at the Placer High School Auditorium. For tickets and the full season’s program, visit

(Photo: Lois Siegel)

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