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Star Liquors Challenge

During the month of February Star Liquors will donate $1 to the San Juan Symphony for every bottle of Chopin Vodka or Caliterra wine purchased.  Click the link below for details.

Durango Neighbors_February 2019

Pre-Concert Talk Tonight, October 3

At the Durango Arts Center at 6 pm.  Free and open to the public.

Kick-Off -the-Season Party August 26

Join us at Jim and Nancy Fisher’s beautiful mountainside home on August 26 to kick off our 2018-19 season.  RSVP: 970-382-9753.

All 2018-19 Energy in Action Tickets Go On Sale at Noon on July 23

Welcome to the San Juan Symphony! And welcome to another fantastic season — Thomas Heuser’s third season as our Music Director. Get ready to experience Energy in Action. We are excited to offer an ambitious season of great orchestral masterworks to lift the spirits, capture the imagination, and sooth the soul. Every concert promises wonderful variety and incredible energy, delivered by the dedicated musicians of the San Juan Symphony.

We will kickoff the 2018-19 season on October 6 and 7 with Hungarian arabesques, flashy Russian dances, and the gloriousSecond Symphony of Jean Sibelius. Featuring our principal bassoonist Denise Turner for Weber’s charismatic Rondo Ongarese, we journey over rugged and exotic musical landscapes, with performances at the Community Concert Hall in Durango and Montezuma-Cortez High School in Cortez.

The young Brahms was supposed to write Beethoven’s next great symphony. Overcoming the intense scrutiny of his works,he managed to create a majestic First Symphony that combines thunderous bombast, tranquil serenity, and sublime redemption. We match the energy of Brahms with Leonard Bernstein’s uplifting choral work Chichester Psalms, featuring a large combined choir with singers from both Farmington and Durango.  The concerts will be performed at the Community Concert Hall in Durango on November 3 and Henderson Performance Hall in Farmington on November 4.

Experience symphonic storytelling on an epic scale as the San Juan Symphony presents brilliant and familiar showpieces. With the tales of the Arabian Nights so vividly portrayed inScheherazade, the childlike simplicity of Ravel’s Mother Goose makes a delightful contrast. The program features beautiful solos for our Symphony musicians, and Tchaikovsky’s Romeo & Juliet “Fantasy Overture” will be played Side-by-Side with local students at Henderson Hall in Farmington and the Community Concert Hall in Durango on February 23 and 24.

What better way to celebrate the energy and power of the symphony orchestra than through the titanic music of GustavMahler! A greatly expanded San Juan Symphony will present two iconic works from Mahler’s early period, showcasing his brilliant integration of simple melodies into complex musical textures. Baritone Michael Hix joins for the delightful Wayfarer Songs, and then the orchestra itself takes center stage for Mahler’s First Symphony, nicknamed “The Titan.”  This concert will be presented at Henderson Hall in Farmington and the Community Concert Hall in Durango on April 6 and 7.

All ages are welcome to enjoy a family-friendly introduction to the Symphony orchestra, featuring Prokofiev’s timeless story, Peter & The Wolf.  Join us in the lobby one hour before each performance for a free Instrument Petting Zoo, hosted by San Juan Symphony musicians.  Performances will be held in Farmington, Bayfield and Durango on September 15 and 16.  Tickets may be purchased at the door.  Kids under 14 are free.

Enjoy Tchaikovsky’s beloved Nutcracker Ballet with live music by the San Juan Symphony on December 7, 8 and 9. TheState Street Ballet of Santa Barbara returns with their lavish production for another series of Durango performances presented by the Community Concert Hall. Maestro Heuser will conduct all four live performances, featuring the Durango Children’s Choir and local student dancers from Durango Ballet.

For Community Concert Hall tickets, please call the ticket office 970-247-7657 or visit www.durangoconcerts.com.  Season tickets are 50% OFF for first-time buyers in Durango. For Farmington tickets, call Henderson Hall box office at 505-566-3430.


Youth Orchestra Auditions Set for May 15

The San Juan Symphony Youth Orchestra Programs will hold auditions for next season on Tuesday, May 15th between 4:30 PM and 7:00 PM in the large theory room next to Roshong Recital Hall in Jones Hall at Fort Lewis College.

Please contact Lech Usinowicz to set up an audition time. 970-884-3120 or befrankfoundation@gmail.com.

Youth Orchestra Concerts Set for April 9 & 16

The San Juan Symphony Youth Orchestras under the direction of Lech Usinowicz will present joint concerts at 7 pm on Monday, April 9 at the Bayfield Performing Arts Center and on Monday, April 16 at the Community Concert Hall in Durango.  Mark Walser directs the Junior Orchestra, Molly Jensen directs the Philharmonic, and “Mr. U” directs the oldest group.


The concerts will feature solo violinist Casey Reed, winner of the San Juan Symphony Second Annual Youth Concerto Competition.  Casey, an eighth grader at Escalante Middle School who takes advanced math and orchestra classes at Durango High School, will perform the Max Bruch Violin Concerto no. 1 in G minor.  He has been studying violin for eight years  with local violinist Brandon Christenson and with San Juan Symphony friend and guest soloist Odin Rathnam via Skype. The competition is open to any student in the San Juan Symphony Youth Orchestra and is held in December each year. Casey plays with the Youth Orchestra and mentors younger students in the Philharmonic.


The Youth Orchestra spring concert program will honor Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birthday with the West Side Story Overture and other selections.

Tickets may be purchased at the door of both events.


SJSYO is the only youth symphony organization in the Four Corners area, and its members receive an exceptional educational experience under the guidance of the region’s finest musical performers and educators. The San Juan Symphony youth orchestras are open to all students in the Four Corners area who have taken music

lessons for at least one year.


The SJSYO program is generously supported by Alpine Bank, Ballantine Family Fund, Durango Friends of the Arts and New Mexico Arts.

Bernstein Centennial Concerts April 7 & 8

Join the San Juan Symphony in celebrating the 100th birthday of the prodigiously talented Leonard Bernstein.  Performances of the “Leonard Bernstein Centennial” concert are scheduled for 7:30 pm on Saturday, April 7 at the Community Concert Hall in Durango and 3 pm on Sunday, April 8 at Henderson Performance Hall in Farmington under the baton of Music Director Thomas Heuser.

Bernstein could have had any one of several successful careers − piano soloist, visionary composer, conductor, writer, educator or Broadway songwriter. In fact Bernstein chose to do all of these things and to do all of them very well.  From Broadway to the silver screen and everywhere in-between, Leonard Bernstein personifies the ideal American musician.  He brought classical music into the American cultural fabric and used performance as a response to political turmoil in the 20th century. His life and works will be center stage with the San Juan Symphony in celebration of his centenary year, featuring movie music from On The Waterfront and familiar favorites from Candide and West Side Story. Also included on the program is a work by one of Bernstein’s greatest American contemporaries, Aaron Copland—the lively Hoe-Down from Rodeo.

Maestro Thomas Heuser’s usual pre-concert talk “Musically Speaking” will be held on Wednesday, April 4 at 6 pm at St. Mark’s Church in Durango, and will also feature a benefit concert for the Jean Hagler Memorial Scholarship Fund through 3rd Ave. Arts.  Performances by Elizabeth Crawford and the Chamber Singers, Rochelle Mann, Gemma Kavanagh, Erik Gustafson, Kerry Ginger, Mika Inouye and Scott Hagler will accompany Maestro Heuser’s remarks.

A pre-concert talk will also be held at Henderson Hall in Farmington at 2 pm on Sunday, April 8, one hour before the afternoon concert.

For Durango tickets, please call 970-247-7657, purchase online at www.durangoconcerts.com, or visit the Community Concert Hall ticket office in the Welcome Center at 8th St. and Main Avenue. For Farmington tickets, please call 505-566-3430. For more information, go to www.sanjuansymphony.org.

“Leonard Bernstein Centennial” is sponsored by Coca Cola of Durango and Farmington and Nancy and Jim Fisher of Durango.

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