Celebrate the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s 100th Anniversary with a full day of free music

Elektra Women’s Choir performs from 3:30-4 p.m. Jan 26 at the Orpheum.

This Saturday, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra celebrates 100 years of bringing classical music to Vancouver audiences. From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., on Jan 26, 12 hours of free music will mark the occasion.

In all, over 1000 musicians will perform as part of over 100 musical acts on 10 stages. All events are first-come, first-serve. Find out more below.

According to Wikipedia, the Vancouver Symphony Society founded the VSO in 1919. Arts patron Elisabeth (Mrs. B.T.) Rogers was largely responsible. However, the orchestra disbanded after two seasons due to financial reasons. Rogers (again) helped bail out the Orchestra in 1930.

In the 1940s until 1959, the orchestra performed at the Georgia Auditorium, a downtown arena located at Georgia and Denman. The symphony then moved to the new Queen Elizabeth Theatre. In 1977, it took up residence at its current home, the Orpheum (601 Smithe St.).

For the anniversary, performances take place on stages at the Orpheum, the Annex Theatre (823 Seymour St.), the VSO School of Music (843 Seymour), and Tom Lee Music Granville (728 Granville St.).

Performers include the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra, Elektra Women’s Choir, VSO School of Music, Vancouver Recital Society, UBC Opera, EnChor, British Columbia Girls Choir, British Columbia Boys Choir, City Opera Vancouver, Vancouver Youth Choir, 45th Avenue Jazz Band, Vancouver Chopin Society, Vancouver Opera, and more.

EnChor performs Jan. 26 as part of the VSO’s 100th anniversary celebration.

The anniversary will also feature trial lessons, workshops, instrument petting zoos, food trucks, yoga to classical music, activities for kids and families, and opportunities to interact with the musicians.

The day-long celebration culminates with a concert featuring the VSO and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra in a joint performance of Mussorgksy’s Pictures at an Exhibition followed by Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite. The musical selections celebrate past, present and future generations of music-makers on the same date, Jan. 26, that the VSO began performing a century ago.

For more info visit vancouversymphony.ca. For the full schedule, go here.

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