The Hershey Theatre, conceived in 1933 by noted philanthropist and chocolatier Milton S. Hershey, stands as an opulent tribute to the performing arts. Taking architectural cues from Saint Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the foyer’s towering arches gleam with golden paint and crystal chandeliers. The blue-and-gold mosaic that leads to the main seating area is the masterwork of two German artists who spent two years on its construction. Once inside the theater, audiences might think they’ve stepped onto the streets of Venice thanks to the atmospheric ceiling, stonework facades, and gondoliers paddling them to their seats. ####Bethel Woods Center for the Arts Music has permeated the 800 manicured acres where the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts has stood since 1969, when farmer Max Yasgur agreed to let love, peace, and harmony grow wild at the very first Woodstock festival. These days, the renowned outdoor venue and cultural center continues to attract the biggest acts in music to its pavilion stage. The open-air design ensures ample ventilation on the natural sloping lawn, and a roof protects up to 15,000 fans from inclement weather and the prying eyes of Cessna pilots.
The Greensboro Symphony?s mighty oak has grown from the most acornic of beginnings?its story started in the 1920s with a group of musicians at Woman's College. Over the years, the symphony has grown into a cultural cornerstone of the community, with community-outreach programs, youth-involvement events, a secret volcano headquarters, and an endowment fund.
Guest conductor Michael Porter leads the Asheville Choral Society in the final performance of its 34th season, raising 100 volunteer voices in traditional and contemporary song. During the program, the large chorus, bolstered by guest soloists Amanda Porter (mezzo soprano), Beth DuRoy (soprano), and Carl Kimbrough (boy soprano), lend their voices to music as powerful as a bench-pressing xylophone. The concert commences with Bach's time-honored "Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott," which builds virtual fortresses with concrete German consonants, followed by selections of the contemporary composition John Brown. Leonard Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms concludes the evening, leaving patrons’ ears contentedly purring.
A local cultural stalwart for more than 60 years, the Greenville Symphony Orchestra now proudly boasts world-class wand-wielder Edvard Tchivzhel as its conductor and music director. During the Grand Finale concert, Tchivzhel will lead skilled musicians through the melodic maze of Dvorak's Symphony no. 9 and Mussorgsky's engaging Pictures at an Exhibition, which synthesizes the aural and the visual better than a loud tropical shirt. Audience members in the upper balcony seats may check out free MP3 players proffering a wealth of concert information to additionally enliven listening.