My love for the symphony runs deep. Seriously – it’s not just me being bougie. As a kid, I played the violin, clarinet, flute and piano. When in the eighth grade, we had a class trip to the National Arts Centre (NAC) where we all got to experience the symphony. I remember sitting there in awe listening to the huge sounds of Tchaikovsky and wondering how this one person managed to write a symphony…how he managed to write music for so many instruments that sounded so beautiful and complex together.
As an adult, I try to get to the symphony as much as I can as this music really touches the soul and inspires appreciation for the technicality of music.
This September, the NAC kicks off its new season with the stylish FOCUS Festival on Thursday, September 13th, which just so happens to be the Beethoven edition. This festival is a cool one that will appeal to a range of people. Why? Because the NAC will be showcasing the talents of DJ Matt Tamblyn who will be spinning tracks infused with hints of Beethoven. Can you think of a better way to get down with Beethoven’s Fifth?
FOCUS Festival is an expansive exploration of classical music with artistic direction and concept by Alexander Shelley. The NAC Orchestra dives deep beneath the surface of the music and its makers through concerts, lectures, chats, podcasts, exhibits and more. Each annual edition of FOCUS presents a unique theme or topic. While the festival has been taking place at the NAC for many years, the 2018 edition marks the first under its new banner “FOCUS”. Want to learn more about FOCUS? Click here.
Throughout the FOCUS Festival’s full program of events, the NAC Orchestra will perform all nine of Beethoven’s symphonies. In addition, Marjo², a quirky duo of NAC musicians will perform a special program for families.
The Beethoven Series also presents a host of free experiences:
- Post-concert musical salons reminiscent of those in Beethoven’s time;
- Noon-hour concerts with a variety of string quartets including the GRAMMY-winning Pacifica Quartet;
- Musically Speaking pre-concert chats;
- Community piano marathons; and
- A pop-up exhibit created by the Beethoven Center at San Jose University.
The opening night of the festival will be held on Thursday, September 13th and will take place on the NAC’s brand new terrace which is stunning! Access to the event is free and guests are welcome to purchase drinks and food during this chic 5 à 7 event.
After the 5 à 7, guests are encouraged to stay for a talk with the NAC’s Music Director Alexander Shelley, followed by the NAC’s Opening Night with Beethoven concert at 8pm. Tickets are available here.
All of you should attend – not only is supporting the arts so important, the NAC throws a helluva party! So, I’m going to make it easy. The NAC and I are giving away a pair of tickets to the opening night of the FOCUS Festival and Beethoven concert! Simply follow the contest rules below to enter. Good luck!
- Follow both the NAC and @dominique.baker on Instagram.
- Tag someone in my Instagram comments that you will bring the opening night of the Focus Festival.
- A winner will be chosen on Tuesday, September 4th at 11:59am EST.
- The winner will be notified via Instagram direct message, so be sure to check your messages!
- Good luck and have fun!
See you at the FOCUS Festival! Good luck all!
*In collaboration with the National Arts Centre