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10 Can't-Miss Events at the Nashville Symphony This Spring

From funky disco programs to cheerful St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, explore 10 unmissable performances at the Nashville Symphony this season

Since 2006, the Nashville Symphony has played in Schermerhorn Symphony Center in SoBro. Situated near the historic Ryman Auditorium, Country Music Hall of Fame, and Bridgestone Arena, this venue continues the city’s tradition of music appreciation. Its prime location makes a trip to the symphony perfect for both date nights and family outings, especially as the weather warms up in Nashville.

Appalachian Spring

Kick off the spring season with this Appalachian Spring performance on both Friday, March 6th and Saturday, March 7th. The program consists of four pieces that overflow with springtime energy. Start off with Symphony No. 2 “Mysterious Mountain,” by Alan Hovhaness. This three-movement opus sets the tone for the evening. Then, enjoy two live recordings of Brad Warnaar’s cornet concerto and Jennifer Higdon’s low brass concerto before ending the night on a high note with Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring Suite.

​​​​​​​Prior to both performances, early birds will get the chance to dive deeper into the music with a Classical Conversations session held with Maestro Giancarlo Guerrero an hour prior to the concert. On Friday, stick around after the performance to participate in a Q&A session with Maestro Guerrero. All attendees are welcome to this informative session, which will be held on the Orchestra Level at the back of the concert hall.

All Debussy Program

This chamber music performance is dedicated to the dreamy melodies of Claude Debussy, and the best part is it’s free to the public. This interactive concert leads an informal and educational evening designed by the orchestra to encourage conversations about its music and history. Featured Debussy pieces include Sonata for Cello and Piano in D Major and Quartet in G Minor. Donors to the Nashville Symphony can receive early access to seat reservations for chamber music performances, including this one, but all general admission reservations open on March 23rd, so keep your eyes peeled for more details on the Nashville Symphony’s website.

Symphony in Space

Families will enjoy this family-focused symphonic installment, which takes music to the final frontier. This space-inspired concert features several shorter selections to keep children focused on the music, and each of the eleven selections is sure to appeal to young audiences. Performing long-time classics such as Mendelssohn’s Saltarello from Symphony No. 4 “Italian” and Stravinsky’s Infernal Dance from 1919’s The Firebird Suite, families will enjoy high brow pieces mixed with more contemporary selections, such as a science fiction suite from Star Trek Into Darkness by Michael Giacchino. Finish off the evening with a riveting rendition of John Williams’ iconic Star Wars main theme.

The concert begins at 11 AM on Saturday, April 18th, but families will want to arrive early to take part in all of the morning’s activities. Starting at 10 AM, visit the instrument petting zoo for a hands-on approach to music, as well as participate in crafts and stories before the concert. This performance is sensory-friendly to accommodate guests with sensitivities and will feature American Sign Language interpretation so that everyone can enjoy the show. Tickets start at $16, so make sure to reserve your seats today.

Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony

There isn’t much more seasonally-appropriate than a pastoral, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 “Pastorale” breathes fresh air into the bucolic genre. This up-tempo composition was finished in 1808, but its timeless appeal makes it an excellent choice for a springtime date night. This performance also features a live recording of Conquest Requiem performed by Gabriela Lena Frank.

​​​​​​​On March 19th, 20th, and 21st, Maestro Giancarlo Guerrero and the Nashville Symphony will perform this five movement symphony with the help of soprano vocalist Jessica Rivera and baritone vocalist Andrew Garland. Guests are invited to arrive early to participate in a Classical Conversations session before the show, and don’t be afraid to linger afterward on Thursday and Friday night to join Maestro Guerrero for an informal Q&A session on the Orchestra Level. Tickets are available for purchase now, so reserve yours in advance today.

The Hot Sardines

If you prefer the flair of 20th-century jazz to orchestral movements, check out The Hot Sardines on April 24th at 8 PM. Bringing a little bit of New York City jazz to Tennessee, The Hot Sardines will mix jazz standards with contemporary style for a swinging evening as part of the Blakeford Jazz Series sponsored by the Nashville Symphony. Enjoy Elizabeth Bougerol’s vocals accompanied by romping piano riffs and big band horns for a full night of fun.

Celtic Journey

Gear up for St. Patrick’s Day with the Nashville Symphony on March 12th, 13th, and 14th as they present “Celtic Journey,” an Irish music experience. Irish raconteur Tomáseen Foley will lead the performance, bringing to life the history of Ireland. With genuine Irish instruments, Celtic dancing, and timeless folk songs, this three-night event is the perfect way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Performances will include favorite Celtic songs like “Whiskey in the Jar,” “Danny Boy,” and “The Last Rose of Summer” and before the end of the night, there will be an incredible dance-off that is sure to bring people to their feet.

​​​​​​​Arrive early for step-dancing and Guinness and Jameson Irish whiskeys at the bar in the Schermerhorn Symphony Center’s main lobby before the show starts. Reservations can be made online now, so don’t wait!

The Gold Rush: An American Musical Journey

Families will love this wild, wild weekend concert that will transport guests all the way back to the Wild West! Rico the Roughrider will come face-to-face with outlaws and roaming bison during this journey back through American music. Classic folk tunes like “She’ll Be Coming Around the Mountain” will be performed alongside Antonín Dvořák’s Slavonic Dance Op. 46, No.1. for a well-rounded program. The afternoon will end with the Washington Post march from Philip Sousa and Bennett’s Celebration.

​​​​​​​Like each performance in the Nashville Symphony’s Family Series, American Sign Language interpretation will be provided by Bridges for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, and the program aims to be sensory-friendly. Pre-concert festivities include a book nook, crafts, and an instrument petting zoo beginning at 10 AM.

Disco Fever

For three nights in a row this spring, the Nashville Symphony will be bringing boogie back. Led by Maestro Enrico Lopez-Yañez, Disco Fever runs from March 26th to 28th and will deliver some of the 1970s best hits. Guests will recognize disco classics like “Stayin’ Alive,” “That’s the Way (I Like It),” “It’s Raining Men,” “We Are Family,” and so much more!

​​​​​​​Make sure you dress up in your favorite disco-inspired outfits and arrive early so you don’t miss out on any of the evening’s festivities in the main lobby. Join DJ Bama for a pre-concert party and show off your best dance moves until the orchestra’s first downbeat.

Ruben Studdard Sings Vandross

When songs require big voices, Ruben Studdard isn’t one to shy away. The 2003 American Idol winner wowed the nation with his brilliant vocals, and on Sunday, March 8th, he will take the stage at Schermerhorn Symphony Center to pay tribute to Luther Vandross. This performance will take place without orchestral accompaniment but will feature Vandross hits such as “Power of Love” and “Don’t Want to Be a Fool.” By using wardrobe and lighting effects to recall Vandross’ iconic performances, Studdard’s concert is one you won’t want to miss.

Mozart’s Gran Partita

Join conductor Nathan Aspinall and the wind instrument sections of the Nashville Symphony for a special chamber music performance of Mozart’s Serenade No. 10 “Gran Partita.” You might recognize this piece from the movie Amadeus, the 1984 film that tells the story of rival composers Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Antonio Salieri. Written for thirteen players, this composition showcases Mozart’s masterful writing. The concert begins at 7:30 PM on April 23rd, and the evening will open with a brief selection of organ and brass compositions to set the tone for Mozart’s “Gran Partita.”

Enthusiastic symphony-goers can purchase season tickets online to secure seats for at least 3 concerts plus additional savings. Making a donation to the Nashville Symphony can also grant early access to some ticket reservations, such as April’s All About Debussy concert, so symphony patrons are encouraged to consider giving. Tax-deductible donations of at least $300 grant access to post-concert receptions, exclusive invitations to educational events, and more. Find out more about how you can support Nashville’s tradition of music here.

If you’re a patron of the arts, don’t wait to learn more about Nashville luxury real estate and nearby Franklin homes for saleContact me today for new listings so that you don’t miss a beat of Nashville’s vibrant music.