Classics Series Concert 1: The American Dream

Classics Series: Concert 1

The American Dream: A Tribute to Leonard Bernstein


Pre-concert discussion begins at 6:30 p.m.

From David Amado:

We celebrate Bernstein’s Centenary with an all-American program. Two masterful ballet scores—Copland’s Appalachian Spring and Barber’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance are joined Robert Paterson’s colorful and compelling 21st Century portrait of Vermont’s Green Mountains. We’ll feature brilliant, critically acclaimed violinist Jennifer Koh in Bernstein’s Serenade. Based on Plato’s Symposium, it is musical testament to love and friendship—always infused with Bernstein’s gift of melody, rhythmic vitality, and sharp wit.

Read violinist Jennifer Koh’s biography: Jennifer Koh biography

Read about the Alfred I. duPont Composer Award and our 2018-2019 Season winner, Robert Paterson: Alfred I. duPont Composer’s Award and 2018-2019 Winner

Read the Program Notes about this concert: Classics Series Concert 1 Program Notes

Watch violinist Jennifer Koh’s speech from the most recent League of American Orchestras Conference:

Read her speech here:

Classics Series Concert 3: Alpha and Omega

Classics Series Concert 3

Alpha and Omega



Pre-concert discussion begins at 6:30 p.m.

From David Amado:

From Tchaikovsky’s first foray into the symphony, to Strauss’s last work, our third Classics program indulges in the passionate, emotive power of some of our most beloved romantic composers. Tchaikovsky’s first symphony “Winter Dreams” is infused with his gift of melody, a powerful sense of drama, brilliant, virtuoso writing, and a powerful Russian soul. White-hot Tchaikovsky is balanced by Strauss’s Four Last Songs—wistful and nostalgic, they are a Romantic epilogue in tribute of the ripe, unabashed heart-on-sleeve passion that had long since fallen out of style. We begin with Sibelius’s Night Ride and Sunrise, an evocative tone poem as much about a sleigh-ride as about a spiritual journey and transformation.

Read soprano Mary Wilson’s biography: Mary Wilson biography

Read the Program Notes about this concert: Classics Series Concert 3 Program Notes

Classics Series Concert 2: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity

Classics Series Concert 2

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity



Pre-concert discussion begins at 6:30 p.m.

From David Amado:

Beethoven was swept up in the revolutionary zeitgeist—aligning himself particularly fervently with the values that defined the French Revolution.  We’ll play his third symphony, the Eroica, first dedicated to Napoleon, then, in a moment of moral clarity, rededicated to the heroic spirit of the revolution. The symphony—longer, more dramatic, more overtly emotive than previous symphonies, totally upended audience expectations, and redefined the genre.  Cherubini, also immersed in French Revolutionary values, wrote dozens of of works capturing the spirit of the time.  His Requiem is one of his finest, and a work Beethoven admired and praised as even greater than Mozart’s Requiem. The University of Delaware’s Schola Cantorum will return to the Grand for this performance.

Read about the University of Delaware Symphonic Choir and its Director, Dr. Paul D. Head: University of Delaware Symphonic Choir, Dr. Paul D. Head

Read the Program Notes about this concert: Classics Series Concert 2 Program Notes, Texts and Translations

Classics Series Concert 4: Dancing About Architecture

Classics Series Concert 4

Dancing About Architecture

Celebrating Leon Fleisher at 90




Pre-concert discussion begins at 6:30 p.m.

From David Amado:

Classics 4 welcomes one of the titans of the classical stage. Leon Fleisher will join us in his 90th birthday year to perform Mozart’s 12th Piano Concerto. Its unfiltered buoyancy, melodic invention, and virtuosity will be at the fore as Fleisher will bring the experience of more than half a century of an astonishing career to bear as he joins the DSO for the first time. His insight, knowledge, experience, and raw musical horsepower promise to make his appearance extraordinary. The second half features the DSO premier of Bruckner’s magnificent 7th Symphony—a masterpiece of sonic architecture. 19th Century romantic harmony, Classical form, and an ancient, otherworldly aesthetic make this symphony one of his most popular.

Read pianist Leon Fleisher’s biography: Leon Fleisher biography

Read the Program Notes about this concert: Classics Series Concert 4 Program Notes

Classics Series Concert 5: Roman Hollywood

Classics Series Concert 5

Important: Wilmington Grand Prix Information!

Our May 17, 2019, performance will take place the evening prior to the Wilmington Grand Prix bicycle race. Preparations for that race will begin Friday and some traditional access to The Grand Opera House will be limited.  Please allow some extra time for your arrival to the pre-concert discussion and performance.
Beginning at 6:00 pm on May 17th, there will be no traffic or parking permitted on North Market Street. Fencing will be constructed during the evening hours; however, Grand Prix officials have arranged for pedestrian crossings to be left open at specific locations, including 5th, 8th, and 9th Streets, for DSO patrons to access the restaurants along North Market Street and the new parking garage on Shipley Street. Patrons will not be permitted to drive on North Market Street, even to drop patrons off at The Grand Opera House’s main entrance. 10th Street will also be closed from Orange Street to King Street. 
We encourage all patrons to use King Street and the King Street entrance to The Grand Opera House. The DoubleTree garage will be open and available to accommodate all DSO patrons.
We are working directly with the senior communities that provide shuttle bus service to and from our concert. If you use this service, please contact your shuttle coordinator for details.
Should you have any questions or concerns regarding this, or require specific accommodations, please contact the DSO office by telephone at (302) 656-7442 or by e-mail at 

Roman Hollywood


This concert is generously underwritten by Tatiana and Gerret Copeland. 

Sergei Rachmaninoff is the uncle of Tatiana Copeland’s mother.

Pre-concert discussion begins at 6:30 p.m.

From David Amado:

Three masterpieces: each of which speaks to, or listens to, Hollywood. Respighi’s glittering Fountains of Rome is cinematic in its sweep, drama, and jaw-dropping technicolor orchestration; Rachmaninoff’s ripe romanticism of his final symphonythough written in Switzerland, speaks the lush language of Hollywood’s golden age. Rozsa’s (El Cid, Ben-Hur) Cello Concerto (featuring brilliant young cellist Nick Canellakis) is concert music written by a silver screen master.

Read cellist Nicholas Canellakis’ biography: Nicholas Canellakis biography

Read the Program Notes about this concert: Classics Series Concert 5 Program Notes

DSO at Longwood Gardens

The Delaware Symphony Orchestra, led by David Amado, features dazzling violinist Jennifer Koh in an evening of Mendelssohn and Brahms. Known for her intense and commanding performances, Koh joins the Delaware Symphony Orchestra on Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64, one of the greatest violin concertos of all time and his last major orchestral work. 


 Jennifer Koh, violin

Recognized for her intense, commanding performances, violinist Jennifer Koh performs with dazzling virtuosity and technical assurance. She believes that all the arts and music of the past and present form a continuum and has premiered more than 60 works written especially for her. 

Koh has performed with leading orchestras worldwide. This season she performs a new concerto written for her by Christopher Cerrone and launches Limitless, which celebrates the collaborative relationship between composer and performer through duo commissions and contemporary works.

Koh also continues her many existing projects, which include solo works, recital series, and commissions for new music. Koh is the artistic director of arco collaborative, an artist-driven nonprofit that fosters a better understanding of our world through a musical dialogue inspired by ideas and the communities around us.

Koh began playing the violin by chance, but made her debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at age 11, and went on to win the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, the Concert Artists Guild Competition, and an Avery Fisher Career Grant. In 2016, she was named Musical America’s Instrumentalist of the Year.

David Amado, DSO Music Director and Conductor

The DSO music director since 2003, David Amado leads the DSO with musical excellence, connecting with audiences through fine musicianship and energetic performances. Dedicated to musical enrichment, Amado continues his tradition of popular pre-concert talks, and he also teaches and coaches young conductors at Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music and at the Atlantic Music Festival in Maine. In addition to his Delaware post, Amado was also named Music Director of the Atlantic Classical Orchestra in Florida in April 2016. His national and international conducting appearances have brought increasing recognition to the DSO, and in Delaware he received the 2014 Governor’s Award for the Arts.