Award-Winning Manassas Symphony Orchestra Celebrates Silver Anniversary Season

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Provided by Manassas Symphony Orchestra

In 1991, Dr. Gail Kettlewell, Provost of Northern Virginia Community College, had a vision for a new orchestra in Manassas and Prince William County.  This orchestra, originally called the NOVA-Manassas Community Orchestra, began performing at Grace United Methodist Church in 1992.  Over the years the orchestra has grown in both size and stature.  In 2010, the ensemble moved into its new home in the Hylton Performing Arts Center, and was renamed the Manassas Symphony Orchestra (MSO) in 2011.  In 2015, the MSO, under the direction of Music Director James Villani, was recognized as the winner of The American Prize for Orchestra Performance, Community Division, and is now recognized as among the best volunteer orchestras in the country.  To celebrate its 25 years of service to the community, the 2017-2018 Subscription Concert Season will feature some of the favorite pieces and soloists from past concerts, as well as pieces that they have not played before.

The MSO kicks off its Silver Anniversary Season on Saturday, Oct. 28, 2017 at  7:30 p. m. with Silver Celebration.  This features the return of fellow American Prize-winning piano soloist Anthony Michael Cornet performing American composer Edward MacDowell’s distinctive Piano Concerto No. 2. Mr. Cornet last performed with the MSO in 2015. The concert concludes with Ludwig van Beethoven’s blissful Symphony No. 7 which was previously performed by the MSO in 2003.

The MSO welcomes the holiday season on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017, at 4:30 p. m. performing Silver PassportThe concert is right after the Manassas Christmas Parade and is the MSO’s fifteenth annual family concert. The afternoon features music from around the world and highlights high school senior trumpet whiz Connor Anderson. The orchestra will also present the premier of a new work by local composer Ben Bernstein based on author Bob Staake’s brand new children’s book, The Book of Gold.  The concert includes seasonal favorites and closes with the return of our exclusive synchronized holiday music and light show!

The celebratory season continues on Saturday, March 3, 2018 at 7:30 p. m. with Silver Jewels

Pianist Carlos Ibay is the featured soloist playing Piotr Tchaikovsky’s gorgeous Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor. Mr. Ibay last performed with the orchestra in 2000. The evening is capped off by Antonín Dvořák’s tragically beautiful Symphony No. 7.

The MSO concludes its anniversary celebration and looks to the future with an all-Russian program on Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 7:30 p. m., performing Russian SilverLocal high school students join the MSO to present a repeat performance of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s magical Scheherazade. The orchestra last performed this magnificent piece in 2007.  Internationally-acclaimed Steinway Artist Agnes Wan is the concert’s highlighted soloist, playing Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.

Season subscriptions and individual concert tickets are available from the Hylton Center Box Office or by calling 888-945-2468. All children and student tickets (through college) are free.

The Manassas Symphony is the winner of the 2015 American Prize for Orchestral Performance, Community Division and is a Resident Arts Partner of the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas. The all-volunteer orchestra plays five concerts a year and is involved with many educational and civic events throughout the community. For more information on the Manassas Symphony, visit its website at


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