IVSO Opens 70th season with new conductor

Dr. Daniel Sommerville

OGLESBY - After a year-long search, Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra Board President Andrea Kowalski has welcomed a new conductor. Dr. Daniel Sommerville was chosen from a field of talented conductors to be the 18th music director and conductor for IVSO’s 70th-anniversary season.

Sommerville has an exciting season planned, which includes music from past decades and special soloists, Chicago Symphony Orchestra trumpeter John Hagstrom and Rachel Barton Pine, who also performed for IVSO’s 50th- and 60th-season celebrations. In addition, The Nutcracker ballet will be performed in December.

The orchestra’s first season was 1949–1950 and Sommerville will strive to fulfill IVSO’s continuing mission: to entertain and inspire the community by performing live orchestral music. His schedule of concerts for the upcoming season include:


Saturday, Sept. 28, 7 p.m. - Illinois Valley Community College Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre, Oglesby featuring guest artist, Jennie Judd, soprano, on music from Broadway with a special tribute to Marvin Hamlisch. There will also be music by Leonard Bernstein, Richard Rogers, Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, and more.

New Beginnings

Sunday, Nov. 3, 3 p.m. - LaSalle-Peru High School Matthiessen Auditorium, LaSalle featuring John Hagstrom, trumpeter with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, on Arutiunian’s Trumpet Concerto, Dvořák’s New World Symphony, and music by Grieg and Kabalevsky.

The Nutcracker

Saturday, Dec. 14, 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 15, 3 p.m. - LaSalle-Peru High School Matthiessen Auditorium, LaSalle will host the ever-popular, fully staged performance of Tchaikovsky’s famous ballet with dancers from Dance Center (LaSalle), Gray’s School of Dance (Ottawa), and Ottawa Dance Academy and Snowflake Chorus by the Latin Mass Choir of the Illinois Valley and voice students of Kori Suarez. Priority reserved seating for IVSO season subscribers.

Far-Off Places

Sunday, March 8, 3 p.m. - Ottawa High School Auditorium, Ottawa featuring winners of the IVSO 2020 Young Performers Competition and evocative pieces by Mendelssohn (The Hebrides), Marquez (Danzon No. 2), Saint-Saëns (Donse Bacchanale), Borodin (In the Steppes of Central Asia), and Khachaturian (Gayane).

70th-Anniversary Celebration

Saturday, May 2, 7 p.m. - Illinois Valley Community College Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre, Oglesby featuring Rachael Barton Pine on Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto. Other pieces by Brahms, Debussy, and Dukas from past anniversary concerts will be performed, as well as Copeland’s suite from The Tender Land.

The purchase of an orchestra subscription includes admission to all five season concerts, along with access to priority reserved seating for The Nutcracker. Subscribers save 50 percent off the price of five individual admissions.

Each subscription includes five tickets, four of which may be used at any of the September, November, March, or May concerts—one at each concert or up to four admissions for any one concert. This flex feature allows patrons to receive the full value of their subscription even if they cannot attend all the concerts.

For prices or to order season tickets, visit ivso.org or purchase at the September concert. Students in grades K–12 are admitted free to all concerts except The Nutcracker. Tickets for college students with ID are $5. December Nutcracker reserved seats for all children and youth through college with ID are $5.


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