Breaking News Bar

'The Russians are Coming!' highlights SIU symphony season

SIU News Service
updated: 10/11/2017 10:30 AM

CARBONDALE - The Southern Illinois Symphony Orchestra presents an all-Russian season for 2017-18. "The Russians are Coming!" season includes five concerts, including the complete Nutcracker ballet.

Two fundraising events are included in the symphony season: a pre-concert wine and cheese reception, Oct. 24, at 6 p.m. in the Shryock Balcony lobby, for $30 per person; and a "Red Valentine" concert at 7 p.m., Feb 10, in the Student Center Ballrooms. The concert features all-Russian chamber music, drinks and desserts for $60 per person.

Here is an overview of the season. All performances are in Shryock Auditorium.

Oct. 24, 7:30 p.m. - The season opens with excerpts from Sergei Prokofiev's ballet "Romeo and Juliet." Guest soloist Orli Shaham presents Sergei Rachmaninov's "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini." Edward Benyas, music director, conducts. The SIU Fine Arts Activity Fee funds Shaham's guest appearance. SIU students are admitted to this concert free.

Nov. 14, 7:30 p.m. - The program this night includes music from Borodin's Second Symphony and Tchaikovsky's Second Symphony, "Sleeping Beauty" and "Romeo and Juliet." Benyas conducts. A free reception follows the concert in Altgeld Hall.

Dec. 1, 7:30 p.m., Dec. 2, 2 p.m. - The Southern Illinois Symphony Orchestra performs Tchaikovsky's classic holiday ballet, "The Nutcracker." Principal and local dancers join the symphony for this holiday favorite.

April 10, 7:30 p.m. - The "Stars of Altgeld" brings the winners of the annual School of Music solo competition to the stage as featured performers with the symphony orchestra. The program includes music from Tchaikovsky and others. Benyas conducts.

April 24, 7:30 p.m. - Guest soloist Rachel Barton Pine, violin, visits SIU for a performance of Aram Khachaturian's "Violin Concerto." The music program also features Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony. Another special feature: the SIU Edwardsville orchestra joins us to form an ensemble 100 strong. Benyas, conducts with guest conductor Michael Mishra. A free reception follows the concert in Altgeld Hall.

Season tickets are $100 (not including the Special Events), but $80 for those under age 50, and $40 for students of any age.

To purchase tickets in advance, go in person to the SIU Arena or McLeod Theater box offices, call 618/453-2000 or go online to the Saluki Ticket Office.

Tickets are available at the Shryock Auditorium box office beginning one hour before the concert. For questions about this event, please email Edward Benyas at