NSS to Present "Experience Joy" Concert
May 11th in Chico and May 12th in Redding

Promo Photo

The North State Symphony will be presenting only one work for its next concert — but what a glorious work it is!

The NSS, under the direction of music director/conductor Kyle Wiley Pickett, will perform Beethoven’s epic orchestral composition — “Symphony No. 9 in D Minor, Opus 25” during the season-ending "Experience Joy" concert.

“This is perhaps the most iconic work in the Western classical music repertoire,” said Pickett. “It is often called ‘The Choral Symphony’ because it was the first major symphony to use the voice as an instrument. It is such a well-known work that all you have to say is ‘the Ninth’ or ‘Beethoven’s Ninth’ and people know immediately what you are referring to.”

Joining the NSS for the two monumental performances — the first takes place Saturday, May 11th at 7:30 p.m. in Chico’s Laxson Auditorium; the second in Redding’s Cascade Theatre on Sunday May 12th beginning at 2 p.m. — will be the combined choruses of CSU, Chico’s University Chorus and Shasta College’s Chorale. Vocal soloists for the performances include Daun Weiss (soprano), Beth Madsen Bradford (soprano), Les Green (tenor) and Ryan Kuster (bass).

“Symphony No. 9” was Beethoven’s last symphonic work and was completed in 1824, three years before his death. In this symphony, Beethoven intertwined separate compositional ideas into one work that juxtaposes styles from his earlier periods against elements from his later works. The words — sung during the glorious final movement by four vocal soloists and a chorus — were taken from "Ode to Joy," a poem written by Friedrich Schiller in 1785 and revised in 1803, with additions made by the composer.

“The ‘Ode to Joy’ is heard everywhere — on TV, on radio and in movies,” said Pickett. “But there really is no substitute for experiencing it live.”

Pickett will give his usual free, informative pre-concert talk one hour before each performance; the Chico talk takes place in Rowland-Taylor Recital Hall, a short walk from Laxson Auditorium.

“We expect a large, enthusiastic audience for both the Chico and Redding performances and are encouraging people to purchase tickets well in advance to insure getting good seats.”

Tickets for the Chico performance are available at the University Box Office (898-6333). For Redding tickets contact the Cascade Theatre Box Office, 243-8877. Tickets are also available online through websites for each box office — www.chicostatetickets.com and www.cascadetheatre.org.

The Chico concert is sponsored by Stifel, Nicolaus, & Co. The Redding concert is sponsored by Dr. Stephen Edward Cox. The guest artist sponsors for the Chico performance include “Many Friends of Ludwig.” Jeannie and Lyle Tullis and Arleen Pickett are guest sponsors for the Redding performance.

More information on this concert is available at the NSS website, www.northstatesymphony.org.


Frequent soloist and versatile performer Daun Weiss is a founding member of the Chico Early Music Ensemble. She has performed with the Sacramento Early Music Consort, Sacramento Baroque Soloists, California Bach Society, and North State Symphony, and is a featured soloist at Chico’s Bach Festival. 

Beth Madsen Bradford has worked with Portland Opera, Opera Theater Oregon, Tacoma Opera, Skagit Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera and Aspen Opera Theater Center, and has appeared as a soloist with the Juneau Symphony, Oregon Symphony and North State Symphony.

Leslie Green is in high demand as a soloist, often praised for his seemingly effortless, expressive singing. He has appeared in the Northwest with the Oregon Repertory Singers, Portland Symphonic Choir, Willamette Master Chorus, Rose City Chamber Orchestra and the Columbia Chorale.

Performing as a soloist with the San Francisco Opera and the Wolf Trap Opera, Ryan Kuster made his symphonic debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic.  This season, he is appearing with the Nashville Opera and the Dallas Opera, and in 2014 will make his Colorado Opera debut.

The North State Symphony was created in 2001 from the merger of the Chico and Redding Symphonies, and functions as a program within the College of Humanities and Fine Arts at CSU, Chico. The musicians of the orchestra include professionals from a wide geographic area, and community members as well as students and faculty members of CSU, Chico. The University also provides extensive administrative and production support to the Symphony.

Financial support also comes from the community leaders who serve on the Board of Directors, and members of the music-loving communities.

The origins of the North State Symphony can be traced back to 1905, when the first orchestra formed at what was then the Chico State Normal School. Thus 2005 was celebrated as the 100th anniversary of symphonic music in the North State area.