Nashville Symphony Announces 2017/18 Season

January 30, 2017

Now available on subscription, concert highlights include Beethoven’s Fifth, Verdi’s Requiem, Harry Potter film concerts, Brian Wilson, Lea Salonga & more

The Nashville Symphony has announced the lineup for its 2017/18 season, which kicks off in September and boasts more than 100 concerts featuring Music City’s 83-member orchestra. Building on the Symphony’s 70-year history and its record-breaking ticket sales in recent years, the new season includes beloved classical masterpieces, visionary new works and high-profile guest artists representing a variety of genres.

Among the highlights for 2017/18, the orchestra will perform landmark pieces from the classical repertoire, including Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, Verdi’s Requiem and Stravinsky’s Suite from The Firebird, along with fresh selections by American composers Christopher Rouse, Jonathan Leshnoff, Tobias Picker and Nashville’s own C.F. Kip Winger. An impressive collection of guest artists will also join the orchestra for performances next season, including pop legends Brian Wilson and Kenny Loggins; violinists Joshua Bell and Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg; pianist André Watts; Broadway sensation Lea Salonga; and many more.

“The city of Nashville has grown dramatically in recent years, and the Nashville Symphony has grown right along with it, thanks in large part to our amazing community, which boasts some of the most active, engaged and supportive arts patrons anywhere in the world,” said Alan D. Valentine, Nashville Symphony president & CEO. “We are committed to keeping our art form relevant for contemporary audiences with exciting new sounds and the highest-quality performances, and in that spirit, our new season delivers what we believe will be a phenomenal experience for music lovers of all tastes.”

Already one of the most prolific recording orchestras in the country, the Symphony will continue its fruitful partnership with the Franklin-based Naxos label — which has resulted in 8 GRAMMY® Awards and 20 nominations to date — with five new recording projects for future worldwide release.

“Music City is a town where new music is being written and recorded every day,” said music director Giancarlo Guerrero, “and our audiences welcome the opportunity to be a part of a truly unique experience where they are literally hearing history being recorded at Schermerhorn Symphony Center. This community will get to be a part of that excitement throughout the 2017/18 season, and I can tell you from personal experience that the energy we receive from our audience has a direct impact on our musicians while they’re performing — it’s one of the reasons the Recording Academy continues to recognize the Nashville Symphony with GRAMMY® Awards and nominations.”

The Nashville Symphony’s 2017/18 season is now available on subscription for all of the following concerts. Single tickets will go on sale in July.

Aegis Sciences Classical Series

Led by Guerrero, the 2017/18 Aegis Sciences Classical Series consists of 14 concert weekends featuring everything from Baroque to brand-new, along with four commissions and a world premiere. Highlights include:

  • Stravinsky’s Firebird, September 14-16: Inspired by a Slavic folk tale, Stravinsky’s Suite from The Firebird will be paired with a new orchestral work, Conversations with Nijinsky, by Nashville resident C.F. Kip Winger — best known as leader of the glam-metal band Winger.
  • Beethoven’s Fifth, October 5-7, 2017: One of the greatest pieces of music ever written will be paired with another Symphony No. 5, by contemporary American composer Christopher Rouse, to be recorded for Naxos.
  • Haydn’s Creation, November 3-4, 2017: Guest conductor Nicholas McGegan returns to lead the orchestra and chorus in a performance of Haydn’s breathtaking masterpiece.
  • The Earth — An HD Odyssey, January 12-13, 2018: The follow-up to the wildly popular HD presentation of The Planets, this concert will feature Strauss’ Also sprach Zarathustra accompanied by HD footage of earth filmed by NASA.
  • Guerrero Conducts Violins of Hope, March 22-24, 2018: Including Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings and John Williams’ Three Pieces from Schindler’s List, this powerful concert will feature Symphony musicians performing on rare restored instruments originally played by Jews during the Holocaust. This concert will also feature the world premiere of Jonathan Leshnoff’s Symphony No. 4 “Heichalot,” a Nashville Symphony commission. (Additional details about the Violins of Hope will be released later this spring.)
  • Tchaikovsky & Copland, May 18-19, 2018: This unbeatable pairing of Russian and American classics will also feature Magnetar, an innovative new concerto for electric cello by Mexico City-based composer Enrico Chapela.
  • Verdi’s Requiem, May 31-June 2, 2018: The orchestra, Nashville Symphony Chorus and a dream team of guest vocalists close the season with Verdi’s celebrated oratorio.

FirstBank Pops Series

Consisting of eight concert weekends, this popular series features legendary artists performing alongside the Nashville Symphony, with lush arrangements specially created for a live orchestral experience. Highlights include:

  • Kenny Loggins, September 28-30, 2018: The ’80s phenomenon returns to sing “Footloose,” “I’m All Right” and other smash hits.
  • Amos Lee, November 9-11, 2017: The soulful singer-songwriter makes his Nashville Symphony debut performing songs from his acclaimed album Spirit, along with fan favorites from his breakthrough album Mission Bell and more.
  • The Songs of Elvis Presley, January 18-20, 2018: Graceland-approved singer Terry Mike Jeffrey sings classics including “Suspicious Minds,” “Jailhouse Rock” and “In the Ghetto,” with a special guest appearance by Priscilla Presley.
  • Lea Salonga: Broadway & Beyond, March 29-31, 2018: The Tony-winning star of Aladdin, Mulan, Miss Saigon and Les Misérables makes her first-ever appearance with the Nashville Symphony.
  • Brian Wilson, May 10-12, 2018: Joined by fellow Beach Boy Al Jardine, one of pop music’s most visionary artists performs classics like “California Girls” and “Good Vibrations,” as well as sounds from his acclaimed solo catalog.

Jazz Series

This four-concert series continues to bring some of the world’s greatest jazz artists to the intimate setting of the Schermerhorn.

  • The Joey Alexander Trio, October 13, 2017: The teenage piano sensation plays classics including “My Favorite Things,” “Lush Life,” “’Round Midnight” and more.
  • Stacey Kent, February 9, 2018: With her crystalline voice, one of jazz music’s most distinctive singers brings new life to original and classic tunes alike.
  • The Arturo Sandoval Sextet, May 4, 2018: The legendary Cuban-born trumpeter makes his first Nashville visit in 15 years.
  • A Tribute to Ray Charles, June 15: Singer Ellis Hall and the Nashville Symphony perform hits including “What’d I Say,” “Georgia on My Mind,” “Hit the Road Jack” and many more.

Sunday Matinee Series

Based on their enormous popularity since being introduced last year, five Sunday classical matinees have been scheduled for 2017/18:

  • Beethoven’s Fifth, October 8, 2017: Also featuring Britten’s Violin Concerto No. 1 and a live recording of American composer Christopher Rouse’s Symphony No. 5.
  • Handel’s Messiah, December 17, 2017: The annual holiday tradition returns for an inspiring afternoon of choral music.
  • Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, January 28, 2018: The beloved violinist steps in front of the orchestra to lead performances of Vivaldi, Piazzolla, Gershwin, Glass and more.
  • Piano Spectacular, April 8, 2018: Two world-class pianists, Jon Kimura Parker and Orli Shaham, team up for Mozart’s Concerto for Two Pianos, plus more.
  • Organ and Brass Recital, May 20, 2018: Featuring members of the Nashville Symphony and guest organist Doug Cleveland, this recital will showcase the mighty power of the Schermerhorn’s Martin Foundation Concert Organ.

Coffee & Classics and Pied Piper Children’s Series

Evenings and Sunday afternoons are not the only times when music will fill the Schermerhorn, as both of the Symphony’s morning concert series will continue in 2017/18.

The Friday-morning Blakeford Coffee & Classics Series includes free coffee and pastries and features four performances of classical music in a relaxed setting, including Bronfman Plays Beethoven, on October 27, 2017, with piano legend Yefim Bronfman, and Guerrero Conducts Ravel, on April 27, 2018, showcasing two works by the French composer and Jonathan Leshnoff’s Guitar Concerto.

Perfect for young listeners, The Ann & Monroe Carell Family Trust Pied Piper Children’s Series offers a great way for families to share the wonder of orchestral music with their children. Each of the four Saturday-morning concerts features a different theme, including Family Holiday Spectacular, on December 23, 2017, and Schoolhouse Rock!, on April 21, 2018. Pre-concert activities in the lobbies include an instrument petting zoo.

Added Concerts

In addition to series concerts, the Nashville Symphony will offer a variety of special events and non-orchestra presentations, highlighted by the continuation of its hugely popular Harry Potter™ series. Any of the following can be added on to 2017/18 subscription packages, with more concerts to be announced throughout the year:

  • Halloween Movie Night: Nosferatu, October 31, 2017: The 1922 vampire classic comes to life with live organ accompaniment.
  • John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring — Meeting of Spirits, November 21, 2017: Jazz guitarist John McLaughlin is joined by Widespread Panic’s Jimmy Herring to revisit the legacy of his legendary Mahavishnu Orchestra.
  • Handel’s Messiah, December 14-17, 2017: The annual performances of Handel’s masterpiece, featuring the orchestra, Nashville Symphony Chorus and vocalists.
  • Home Alone in Concert, December 21-22, 2017: A Nashville holiday tradition featuring John Williams’ beloved score performed live as the film is screened in HD.
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban™ ­– In Concert with the Nashville Symphony, March 17-18, 2018: Relive all the thrills and excitement of J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World as we screen the third film in the Harry Potter series, with the Nashville Symphony performing John Williams’ exuberant score live.
  • Joshua Bell with the Nashville Symphony, May 9, 2018: The celebrated violinist and conductor returns to the Schermerhorn for a night of classical favorites.
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire™ – In Concert with the Nashville Symphony, May 26-28, 2018: It’s the fourth film in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter™ series, screened in glorious HD, with the Nashville Symphony performing the score live.

For a full listing of the Nashville Symphony’s 2017/18 lineup, please visit

Subscription packages are now available for all 2017/18 concerts and may be purchased at, by phone at 615.687.6400, or in person at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center Box Office. Subscribers enjoy a long list of benefits, including priority seating, bonus tickets, free unlimited ticket exchanges, discounted parking, and much more.

Single tickets for all 2017/18 concerts will go on sale in July 2017.

A digital press kit, including photos, video and the full 2017/18 Nashville Symphony season lineup, is available online at The season lineup is also attached.


HARRY POTTER characters, names and related indicia are © & ™ Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. J.K. ROWLING`S WIZARDING WORLD™ J.K. Rowling and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Publishing Rights © JKR. (s17)