The Greenville Symphony Orchestra’s Annual “Oktoberfest” Chamber Orchestra Concert Returns October 7-9, 2016 at the Gunter Theatre

September 6, 2016

The Greenville Symphony Orchestra (GSO), conducted by Maestro Edvard Tchivzhel, presents its first Chamber Orchestra Series concert, “Oktoberfest” on Friday, October 7, 2016 at 8:00 p.m., Saturday, October 8, 2016 at 8:00 p.m., and Sunday, October 9, 2016 at 3:00 p.m. in The Gunter Theatre as part of The Greenville News Chamber Orchestra Series.

George Frideric Handel’s Royal Fireworks Music, HWV 351 kicks off the concert with an enthusiastic opening.  Written as accompaniment music to celebrate the end of the War of the Austrian Succession, the Royal Fireworks Music was composed for Great Britain’s King Geoge II in 1749.  As the piece’s title indicates, the music was to accompany a dazzling fireworks display for an outdoor performance to honor King George II.  However, during the performance, a portion of the wooden pavilion built close to the King’s residence for the outdoor performance caught fire!  Luckily for Handel, the fire was contained and his Royal Fireworks Music was well received and has proven to be one of his most popular compositions.

Following Handel’s Royal Fireworks Music is Johannes Brahms’ Variations on a Theme of Joseph Haydn, Op. 56a (Haydn Variations), nicknamed the “Saint Anthony Chorale.”  Ironically, the theme was discovered to actually have been composed by one of Haydn’s students, a common mistake from a time before copyright laws.  Brahms’ proclivity for the traditions of great masters led him to compose this satisfying set of eight superb variations.

The second half of “Oktoberfest” features Ludwig van Beethoven’s sunny and boisterous Symphony No. 8 in F major, Op. 93.  Despite several challenging circumstances, including the onset of his inevitable deafness, Beethoven’s Eighth delivers a sunny and boisterous symphony that contradicts his personal challenges at the time.  In fact, this playful and light-hearted composition is full of musical jokes and was considered by Beethoven to be better than the ever-popular Seventh Symphony.

Tickets to the Greenville Symphony Orchestra’s “Oktoberfest” Chamber Orchestra concert are $44.  For ticket information, contact the Peace Center box office at (864) 467-3000 or toll-free at (800) 888-7768, or purchase online at peacecenter.org.  For more information about the Greenville Symphony Orchestra, visit their website at greenvillesymphony.org.


The Greenville Symphony Orchestra is dedicated to providing educational and cultural opportunities for the citizens of Greenville and surrounding communities through the presentation of live orchestral music.  Offering excellence in live musical performance, the orchestra enriches lives, educates minds, and encourages community support of the arts.