Alexandria Symphony’s New Season Will Feature Familiar Classics and Forgotten Voices

The Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, Feb. 9, 2019. (Photo by James Cullum)

Alexandria, VA—The Alexandria Symphony Orchestra (ASO) has announced its 2019-2020 Season, featuring Music Director James Ross. The season offers well-loved and familiar masterworks, music by living and diverse composers, including five women composers, and a world-premiere commissioned original composition.

Season Opener Commemorates D-Day

For the season opener (October 5 and 6, 2019), Ross has arranged his own “Imaginary Symphony,” drawing from movements by four composers across centuries and continents. Each movement is part of a cohesive symphonic work that reflects on war and peace, commemorating the 75th anniversary of D-Day. The program also features Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with renowned soloists Rita Sloan (piano), Nicholas Tavani (violin) and Alan Richardson (cello). Tavani and Richardson perform frequently as members of the famed Aeolus Quartet, and Ms. Sloan has performed with many distinguished artists and ensembles throughout the United States.

November 16 and 17

Maestro Ross welcomes cellist Wolfgang Schmidt for Elgar’s Cello Concerto on November 16 and 17, 2019. Also joining the ASO, the Alexandria Choral Society and Fairfax Choral Society will present Lili Boulanger’s Old Buddhist Prayer. Contrasting the serenity and turmoil of the first half, the concerts conclude with Dvořák’s optimistic, lyrical Symphony No. 8.

December 14 and 15

The ASO presents a holiday concert on December 14 and 15, 2019 with the Nutcracker two ways: excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s suite, and Duke Ellington’s version with video realizations following the story of an African American girl from Harlem. Also on the program, the prelude to Hänsel and Gretel and Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez, rendered for harp with soloist Morgan Short, the 2019 Mary Graham Lasley Scholarship Competition winner. Both performances will be offered one hour earlier with no intermission.

February 15 and 16

The program on February 15 and 16, 2020 conjures a serenade at sunset. Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Concerto in D major features classical guitarist Berta Rojas while Mozart’s Serenata Notturna evokes Austrian party music. Maestro Ross premieres his own arrangement of Florence Price’s String Quartet in G major, expanded for string orchestra, and the concert concludes with Schubert’s elegant Fifth Symphony.

ASO’s Season Finale, May 16 and 17

ASO’s season finale on May 16 and 17, 2020 is a salute to the power of storytelling and celebration of diverse voices. The concert opens with a world premiere, Tribute, by Baltimore Symphony’s percussionist Brian Prechtl, who was commissioned by Classical Movement’s Eric Daniel Helms New Music Program for the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra and ASO Sympatico. The concert intensifies with Gabriela Lena Frank’s Three LatinAmerican Dances and culminates with Rimsky-Korsakov’s death-defying saga, Scheherazade.

The 2019-2020 Season is generously supported by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Alexandria Commission for the Arts, Classical Movements and Renner & Company CPA, PC. The fully-professional Alexandria Symphony Orchestra performs Saturday evenings (8:00 p.m.) at Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center and Sunday matinees (3 p.m.) at the George Washington Masonic Memorial. Season subscriptions start at $90. Single-ticket prices range from $20 to $85 for adults, $5 for youth and $10 for students. Military, senior and group discounts are also available. To order tickets and for more information, visit or call (703) 548-0885.

Free parking provided by the ASO at both venues. The Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center is accessible by Metro bus lines 7A, 7B, 7F, 7Y, 25A, 25C and 25E, as well as DASH bus line AT6. The George Washington Masonic Memorial is accessible by the Blue and Yellow metro line (King Street station), numerous Metro, Dash and Richmond Highway Express bus lines, and the King Street Trolley in Old Town, Alexandria.

For soloists’ biographies, please visit:

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