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Sudbury’s symphony celebrates 35 years of harmony

Fans of the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra (SSO) don’t need an incentive to buy their subscriptions for next season — the music and fine performances are reason enough.
Victor Sawa, the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra’s musical director, said the Symphony’s 35th season is going to end with a bang. Photo supplied.
Fans of the Sudbury Symphony Orchestra (SSO) don’t need an incentive to buy their subscriptions for next season — the music and fine performances are reason enough. But there are a couple of very good reasons to order subscriptions before the end of this month.

“Subscribers don’t have to pay 13 per cent HST before April 30,” Rachel Churchill, the acting executive director of SSO, said.

Even though Ontario’s Harmonized Sales Tax doesn’t go into effect until July 1, the symphony has to charge the additional tax starting May 1 because the season starts in September after the effective date, she explained.

In addition to saving tax, subscribers renewing before May 1, will receive a free concert ticket for a friend. New subscribers who buy a subscription before May 1 will get two subscriptions for the price of one.

These special offers are the symphony’s gift to the community to celebrate its 35th anniversary. The orchestra was officially incorporated as a not-for-profit performing arts organization in 1975.

The history of the symphony goes back further to its premiere performance as a community orchestra Jan. 13, 1954 at the Sudbury High School Auditorium under the baton of Emil First.

The SSO will perform six concerts during its 35th season and take audiences on a journey around the world in music.
The theme for the 2010-2011 season is “What A Journey,” Dave Petyrna, a member of the board of directors, said. His advertising agency, Petyrna Advertising, is the agency of record for the symphony.

“A vibrant symphony is part of a vibrant community,” he said. “We (SSO) have come a long way, and we’ve been on a journey to get here.”

The 2009-2010 season, which ends April 24, had about 800 subscribers. Concerts are held at the Glad Tidings Auditorium, a 1,338-seat church on Regent Street. Many of the season concerts were sold out.

Victor Sawa, who commutes from Regina for concerts, has been the SSO’s musical director since 1997. The new season will start Sept. 25 with a “meat and potatoes” concert of Beethoven and Brahms, he said.

The Oct. 30 concert’s theme is Heroes and Villians. The symphony will play movie classics, such as the Vader’s Theme from Star Wars, and the theme from Superman.

The holiday concert is scheduled for Nov. 20 and is designed for younger audiences. Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf will be performed along with holiday favourites, such as music from The Nutcracker.

Soprano Miriam Khalil will perform with the symphony Feb. 19, 2011, when it plays a tribute to Italian operas and composers.

In March, the theme will be From Russia with Love. The SSO will play the Russian Easter Overture by Rimsky-Korsakov and Tchaikovsky’s fourth symphony.

The journey is complete April 16, 2011 when the SSO Goes Around the World. Sawa promises the season will end with a bang when the symphony plays Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture.