Partnering with the Brazilian Embassy, SONOVA presented an evening full of Brazilian music throughout the ages. The audience was wowed by world-renowned Brazilian flautist, James Strauss. The wonderfully successful evening was topped off by our annual gala, with more than 60 amazing items up for bid!
SONOVA held an immensely successful benefit concert for homeless shelters of Northern Virginia: Bridges to Independence Arlington, Bailey's Crossroads Community Shelter, and Alexandria Community Shelter. In exchange for beautiful Bach music, audience members brought new packs of socks, and we obtained 437 pairs of socks to donate to those in need!
SONOVA was joined on stage by world-renowned South American pianist Juan Carlos Escudero; prominent local cellist Robert Battey; CoroAllegro from Wilmington, Del.; and St. Marie's Choral Arts from Leonardtown, Md. We presented three major musical works:
- Ludwig Von Beethoven's masterpiece for solo piano, choir and orchestra, Choral Fantasy, Fantasia in C minor Op. 80.
- The stunning Saint Saëns Cello Concerto #1 in A minor.
- And, the WORLD PREMIERE of one of the most exciting works of SONOVA's five-year history, CHILDREN OF ZEUS.
Children of Zeus is an incredibly exciting new commission by American composer Brian Wilbur Grundstrom. Each of its five movements focus on one of Zeus's children. Grundstrom has masterfully set to music text about these Greek gods and goddesses, capturing their spirits and personalities in this epic new work for orchestra and choir. From the lush, mysterious harmonies of Dionysus, to the loud and militaristic Ares, from the beautiful melody of Aphrodite and the cynicism of Hercules, to the almost hypnotic refrain of Apollo, CHILDREN OF ZEUS is a magnificent new work that will keep you engaged, entertained and educated from the first note to last.
The concert began with a talk by NASA's Dr. Michelle Thaller and our very own Maestro Dokken. Afterward, SONOVA performed Gustav Holst's epic suite The Planets while Dr. Thaller projected images of the planets taken by NASA spacecraft. After a long intermission featuring food, beverages, and fun things to bid on, SONOVA performed music from Star Trek, including all of the TV themes and music from several of the movies.
Playing to a sold-out audience, SONOVA presented music from all seven Harry Potter movies and the first six Star Wars movies. Audience members wore Hogwarts ties and scarves to show their house loyalty, and we even had Princess Leia and Darth Vader in the audience!
Maestro Dokken and the SONOVA Chamber Ensemble played music from the 18th, 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries in Colonial Williamsburg’s historic Bruton Parish Church. The concert featured our principal bassoonist, Whitney Miller, playing Willem de Fesch’s Sonata in G Major, and the premiere of violist Michael Ream’s Parish Suite No. 3.
In partnership with master illusionist Landon Swank, SONOVA presented an innovative new magic show created especially for our annual Gala Concert and silent auction. Orchestra concert or magic show? It was both! Swank thrilled our audience with his illusions while the orchestra played favorites from Grieg, Handel, Dvorak, Prokofiev, Mozart, and Gershwin. There were even two mind blowing illusions featuring SONOVA covering pop and rock favorites!
This year’s holiday concert featured the debut of our Associate Conductor, Michael Thompson. He led the orchestra in seasonal favorites and audience sing-a-longs. Members of the orchestra read traditional texts and poems before each work to set the tone and help everyone get into the holiday spirit!
SONOVA performed two sold-out concerts of the incredible music by John Williams from all six films just a month before the highly anticipated release of the seventh installment of the Star Wars franchise. This special out-of-this-world experience featured Maestro Jeff Dokken conducting with a lightsaber, a Duel of the Fates chorus, and audience members in Star Wars character costumes!