Symphony V.0

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June 15, 2012

Another Sneak Peek

Given that Wagner’s “The Ride of The Valkyries” was a top selection during our Audience Choice vote we felt it would only be appropriate to share a couple of stunning images that James Alexander and his team have created especially for this work, which the Orchestra performs next Saturday evening.

Brünnhilde materializes out of the vapors and appears inside the Academy of Music.

June 13, 2012

Bringing It All Together

Welcome to the final blog post in this behind-the-scenes video series on the Stokowski Celebration Concerts in the Academy. I'd like to offer you some reflections on our final preparations as well as insights into what you can expect when you attend this special concert series.

Allow me to tempt you to purchase your tickets now (if you haven’t already done so):

You, the audience, chose a great program for the Audience Choice Concert on June 23!

The screen is ready to show selections from Disney’s Fantasia!

June 11, 2012

Inviting the Maestro

In my penultimate blog post for the June Stokowski Celebration Concerts, I share some of my ideas around inviting Leopold Stokowski himself to join us for these performances in the Academy of Music. My aim is to allow today’s audiences to hear some words of wisdom from the old Maestro. I want to share with you how, by inviting Stokowski to join us and literally pass the baton to the Orchestra’s new maestro, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, I convinced the Academy to give up one of its most famous ghosts!

June 08, 2012

Some Digital Renderings

We met today with James Alexander and Clark Productions, the stage director and team that are creating the incredible visual experience around our June Stokowski Celebration Concerts in the Academy. James and his team showed us some digital renderings projected onto a detailed scale model of the Academy of Music’s interior—take a look:

 

June 04, 2012

Making Sisters Fly

Whether you’re an opera buff, familiar with the movie Apocalypse Now, or can simply whistle the main theme to "The Ride of The Valkyries," I’m pretty certain you’ll want to know how we are going to get our Valkyries off the ground later this month!

In this video I’d like to tell how I envisage making the Wagnerian heroine Brünnhilde and her eight sisters—that’s right, eight—known as “the Valkyries” appear inside the auditorium of the Academy of Music. Join me as I show you how my simple napkin sketches get converted into cutting-edge technology.

May 30, 2012

Stoki & Disney

In this blog post, I’d like to tell how my team of creative lighting and special effects designers and I will try to compliment, not compete with, the artistic magnificence of the Disney movie Fantasia, excerpts from which Yannick Nézet-Séguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra will accompany live during the Stokowski Celebration Family Concert on June 23.

May 18, 2012

Stokowski Celebration Concerts - Concert Creators Catch Up

Whether it was pure fate or simple scheduling karma, this week I had a chance to meet up with Yannick Nézet-Séguin in Europe. We were able to update each other on the preparations for the Stokowski Celebration concerts in the Academy of Music June 21-23.

May 17, 2012

Sheherazade

Hello! James Alexander, stage director for the June Stokowski Celebration concerts here! 

In this latest blog in our series I want to show you how I’m aiming to complement Yannick Nézet-Séguin and The Philadelphia Orchestra’s re-telling of Rimsky-Korsakov’s evocative Sheherazade

As for the eye-catching bespoke imagery being created for this concert, like the composer himself, I am eschewing a definitive narrative. Rather, I’m endeavoring to offer images which accompany this dazzling and colorful score and offer you a visual thematic fantasy.

May 08, 2012

Bach - Toccata and Fugue

In this latest blog post James Alexander, the stage director responsible for the physical presentation of the four Stokowski Celebration concerts in June, shares what he saw in his mind’s eye when he listened to Stokowski’s landmark orchestral arrangement of Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor, the composer’s most famous work in the organ repertoire. 

James then goes on to enlighten us as to what happens to his “napkin sketches” once he shares them with his creative special effects team at Symphony V.0. 

May 01, 2012

Stokowski Celebration Concerts - The creative voyage

In this post, Stage Director James Alexander introduces himself and invites you, the Philadelphia Orchestra audience, to explore some of the steps of his creative journey.

Taking us through some key moments of how he imagines his stagings for these four celebratory concerts, James shares what happens for him when he hears music, how he translates the images he conjures up, and how he communicates these to, and collaborates with, his key lighting, graphics, and special effects designers.

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