SC Phil presents Beethoven & Blue Jeans Oct 8

Grammy Nominated Violinist Tessa Lark Performs with SC Philharmonic at Masterworks Series Opener: Beethoven & Blue Jeans

The South Carolina Philharmonic presents Beethoven & Blue Jeans Saturday, October 8, 2022 at 7:30 PM at the Koger Center for the Arts. This annual event is often the highest-attended concert at the Koger Center for the orchestra each season, and this year’s installment features a blockbuster lineup of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 4 in Bb Major, Rossini’s Overture to “La scala di seta” (The Silken Ladder) and Michael Torke’s Appalachian-inspired composition Sky. The Torke will feature critically acclaimed and Grammy Nominated guest soloist Tessa Lark on violin. All concerts this season are presented in person and live-streamed, and tickets may be purchased at

Beethoven & Blue Jeans is one of the SC Philharmonic’s hit annual concert events. It provides audiences with an opportunity to engage with the work of Beethoven, it regularly welcomes a national star to Columbia and it invites audiences to unbutton and adorn themselves with their favorite denim from their wardrobe – demystifying the classical music experience and making it more comfortable. It should be noted that the SC Phil always welcomes patrons from all walks of life, and champions a “come as you are” mentality for all concert events.

As the SC Philharmonic enters its 58th Season, Music Director Morihiko Nakahara wanted to open the 22/23 Masterworks Series with a concert that would set the tone for the ambitious year of programming that the orchestra has slated. “I thought it would be appropriate to open our Masterworks season with this program full of joyous energy,” said Nakahara. “It is much like a champagne toast to the musical journey ahead of us. Rossini’s youthful overture sets the tone with his trademark whimsy and effervescence, and Beethoven’s Fourth Symphony is filled with witty musical dialogues and mischievous virtuosity. We are also delighted to welcome back violinist Tessa Lark to the Koger stage, playing a brilliant concerto written especially for her by Michael Torke entitled Sky.” One critic aptly described Torke’s violin concerto as “bluegrass-meets-rocket-fueled-minimalism.” Sky, which serves as the centerpiece of this program, is a wild and fun musical ride that showcases Tessa’s wide-ranging musical personality. The conductor expects audience members “will surely be stomping their jeans-clad feet in their seats.”

ETV Radio listeners will be familiar with the talents of guest soloist Tessa Lark, as she is regularly featured on the station’s programs. Violinist Tessa Lark is one of the most captivating artistic voices of our time, consistently praised by critics and audiences for her astounding range of sounds, technical agility, and musical elegance. In 2020 she was nominated for a Grammy in the Best Classical Instrumental Solo category for her recording of Michael Torke’s Sky. She also received one of Lincoln Center’s prestigious Emerging Artist Awards, the special Hunt Family Award. A budding superstar in the classical realm, she is also a highly acclaimed fiddler in the tradition of her native Kentucky, delighting audiences with programming that includes Appalachian and bluegrass music and inspiring composers to write for her.

To celebrate the opening of the 22/23 Masterworks Series, the SC Philharmonic is also presenting Philtober Fest, a public concert event, on October 8, 2022 from 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM on the Koger Center outdoor stage. This concert will feature performances from Boomtown Trio, The Wolfman String Band and The Flying Js. The music will range from bluegrass, blues, Americana and folk. Food and drink will be available for purchase from the Thirsty Fellow Concessions Trailer, Brown Sistaz Island Vibz, and Koger Center concessions.

Beethoven & Blue Jeans will be presented on Saturday, October 8, 2022 at 7:30 PM at the Koger Center for the Arts. In-person or livestream tickets may be purchased at or by calling the Koger Center Box Office at 803-251-2222.

The South Carolina Philharmonic is committed to performing live symphonic music and providing dynamic educational opportunities in the Midlands. We carry forward a legacy of passion for the music and embrace our responsibility to be a vibrant part of the cultural fabric of our diverse community.

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