Thursday, April 30, 2009

"This is not to be missed!"

Thomas was on "Jazz in the Afternoon" on KIOS-FM to discuss clarinetist Dave Bennett and his Benny Goodman Tribute, featured this weekend with the Omaha Symphony.

Click here for an insightful interview & some swingin' music!

Click here for tickets!

In the Spotlight: John Klinghammer, clarinet

Why did you start playing the clarinet?
When I was in the seventh grade, my two best friends played saxophone in the school band, and I felt left out. So, I joined up, hoping to play saxophone as well. The band director, however, told us right away that he had too many saxophones and too many much for that plan. I narrowed it down to the trombone, which I thought looked like a lot of fun with the slide and all, and the clarinet, which I guess I just thought looked cool. I went with the clarinet after determining that the trombone was too big and heavy for my skinny middle school self to carry home every day.

When did you know you wanted to play professionally?
I'm not was never really a plan until very late in my education. My junior year at the University of Oregon I switched from a music education major to a clarinet performance major...this was perhaps the first time I started thinking seriously about making a living by playing the clarinet. But I wasn't really sure if I could do it until I finally won my first job, with the Jacksonville Symphony, eight years later.

How do you see our education programs making a difference?
I really think the Omaha Symphony has one of the best overall education programs of any orchestra in the country, and by sheer volume of students that we play for, we can't help but make a difference. I still remember the Eugene Symphony concerts I went to as a 4th grader in Eugene, Oregon... it made a lasting impression on me, and certainly gave me some early enthusiasm and appreciation for classical music. I have no doubt we make a similar impression on the young, aspiring musicians of Omaha.

What are your favorite things and/or places in Omaha?
I love some of the new places opening up in the Old Market...Blue, the Wine Company. I think the Slowdown is one of the best places to see a concert anywhere. And I am a big fan of the new pedestrian bridge, which enables me to bike into Iowa without having to load up the car.

What's the best kept secret about the Omaha Symphony?
Not sure how much of a secret this is, but we have a reputation among visiting artists as being an extremely cool, friendly orchestra.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Get "In the Mood" for a swinging weekend with the symphony!

Here's the inspiration behind this weekend's exciting big band tribute!

Hear "Sing, Sing, Sing" and more this weekend... get your tickets now!

Learn more about Dave Bennett's Tribute to Benny Goodman. (Turn your volume up for a swingin' sample!)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Omaha Symphony brings FREE patriotic-themed concert to Council Bluffs

What: Patriotic Pops in the Park
Sponsored by the Iowa West Foundation
When: Sunday, May 24 Concert begins at 7 PM
Where: Playland Park in Council Bluffs
Details: FREE admission; call 402.342.3560 or visit

Experience the excitement and beauty of live orchestral music under the stars! You’re invited to spend part of Memorial Day weekend with the Omaha Symphony at a free outdoor concert in Council Bluffs. Playland Park is the setting for this special patriotic-themed pops performance on Sunday, May 24. The concert begins at 7 p.m.
The Iowa West Foundation has made this extraordinary event possible. Thanks to a generous grant, the orchestra is able to provide Iowa and Nebraska residents with first-class, family-friendly entertainment for free! You’ll hear favorites like “The Star Spangled Banner” and “America the Beautiful,” along with Sousa marches and a medley honoring America’s armed forces.
“Hearing beloved patriotic songs played by a full orchestra is always a thrill, but the outdoor setting makes it even more dynamic. This will be a memorable musical experience for concertgoers,” said Rob Hallam, President and CEO of the Omaha Symphony.
On May 24, pack a picnic and enjoy “Patriotic Pops in the Park.” Make holiday memories with your loved ones and the Omaha Symphony!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Spotlight on Ernest Richardson

The Omaha World-Herald featured Omaha Symphony resident conductor Ernest Richardson in a feature called "My Wacky Job." While it ran in the Easter Sunday edition of the paper, you can still find the content online!

CLICK HERE to watch Ernest as he answers questions about his career and conducts the symphony in a rehearsal.

This season marks resident conductor Ernest Richardson's 15th season with the Omaha Symphony! We will celebrate Ernest and his tenure in Omaha at Dave Bennett's "Tribute to Benny Goodman," the final Symphony Pops concert of the season.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Mozart News!

This just in... Creighton's Professor Alan Klem will play the role of Antonio Salieri at our May 9th Mozart and Salieri concert. This performance will feature recitations from Peter Shaffer's Amadeus, along with some of Mozart's most popular works. It's bound to be an exciting night of live theater and live music! Get your tickets now!

Also... there was a great mention of the Mozart and Salieri concert in Bob Fischbach's Omaha World-Herald column today. We are so excited to be teaming up with Film Streams! "Imagine how the concert might be enhanced by having seen the movie and listened to Wilkins parse fact and fiction about this great composer." Read more!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Music & mayhem in Western Nebraska

Carnegie LinkUP! Tour Photo Contest

In March, Omaha Symphony musicians headed to western Nebraska to present the Carnegie LinkUP! education program to 4th-6th grade students in Norfolk, Scottsbluff, and Chadron. The tour also featured concerts in these communities.

Music was played, lessons were learned, and fun was had! Need proof? Check out the musicians' entries to the Tour Photo Contest below.

First place: Leslie Fagan, flute
Second place: Anne Nagosky, violin
Third place: Adam Trussell, bassoon

More to come....

Monday, April 6, 2009

A MUST-Listen Podcast...

Thomas shares with Michael Lyon ( some insight and enthusiasm regarding the Omaha Symphony's 2009/10 Season. If you want to get informed and excited about the upcoming year's offerings, definitely take a listen!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

REVIEW: Bass virtuoso shows mind-boggling skill

The review is in from the Omaha World-Herald... and it's amazing!

It begins, "The Omaha Symphony is presenting exactly the kind of concert this weekend that classical music needs if it is to survive into the 21st century."

Read it all here.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Virtuoso's talent on display this weekend...

Spice up your weekend with tremendous talent! Hear bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer and Dvorak's "New World" Symphony tonight and tomorrow at the Holland Center.

Still not convinced?

Read the Omaha World-Herald's preview
It's not too late to get your tickets... click here.