La Jolla Symphony & Chorus: ‘Life’ season ends with ‘Ode to Common Things’

From LJS&C Report


La Jolla Symphony & Chorus (LJS&C) will present its final program of a season celebrating David Chase’s 40th anniversary year as choral director, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, June 7 and 2 p.m. Sunday, June 8 at Mandeville Auditorium on the UC San Diego campus.

Music Director Steven Schick will open the concert, conducting the orchestra in Leos Janácek’s “


” and the high spirits of Haydn’s “London Symphony.”

Chase will conclude his anniversary year leading orchestra, chorus, three vocal soloists and virtuoso guitarist in a chorus favorite, Cary Ratcliff’s “Ode to Common Things.”

About the program

Heard as either opera overture or concert work, “


” (Jealousy) is striking music, full of color, swirling energy and a haunting lyricism. Haydn’s

“London Symphony

” was written when the composer was at the height of his powers as a symphonist. It demonstrates the technical mastery, grand sonority, and breadth of scope that would represent the furthest development of the symphony until Beethoven took up the form five years later.

Ratcliff composed “

Ode to Common Things

” in 1995. The text is taken from poems written by Chilean poet Pablo Neruda about objects like scissors, clocks, thimbles and beds. An analysis and celebration of everything taken for granted, Neruda’s poetry in this piece is perceptive, surprising, beautiful, wistful and funny — and so, too, is Ratcliff’s music.

The work calls for six-part chorus, orchestra, and three vocal soloists and guitar. The LJS&C performance will feature soprano Mónica Ábrego, mezzo-soprano Guadalupe Paz, and tenor John Russell, with virtuoso guitar passages performed by Pablo Gomez.

La Jolla Symphony & Chorus is San Diego’s oldest and largest community orchestra and chorus. The non-profit group boasts a 110-person orchestra and 130-person chorus, which performs groundbreaking orchestral and choral music along with traditional favorites from the classical repertoire. u

If you go:

Parking is free. A pre-concert lecture will be offered one hour prior to concert times. Tickets are $15-$29 at (858) 534-4637 and