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The Philadelphia Orchestra Celebrates Legendary Composer and Conductor John Williams in Special One-Night-Only Concert

March 30, 2016

Program features music from some of his most beloved scores, including selections from Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens 

(Philadelphia, March 30, 2016)—Five-time Academy Award and 22-time Grammy Award-winning composer John Williams and Philadelphia Orchestra Principal Guest Conductor Stéphane Denève share the podium for a special one-night-only concert event celebrating Mr. Williams’s most beloved film scores, May 4, 2016, at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.

Mr. Williams conducts the concluding highlights of a Philadelphia Orchestra program featuring selections from Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. Due to his recent composing schedule, Mr. Williams has entrusted the remainder of the repertoire to his good friend, Philadelphia Orchestra Principal Guest Conductor Stéphane Denève. The concert, which includes selections from movies such as Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jaws, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, and E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial, also features exclusive video interviews with the composer about his work, a selection of film clips presented with some of Williams’s iconic movie themes, and a unique demonstration on the art of film scoring.

"The Philadelphia Orchestra is one of our country’s most cherished musical institutions. It’s a special privilege and a joy to perform with them, and also to share the stage with the brilliant Maestro Stéphane Denève," said Williams.

This concert is the centerpiece of a two-week celebration of John Williams’s compositions that includes performances of his Cello Concerto by Yo-Yo Ma and Tributes! For Seiji (April 28-May 1), and his Violin Concerto performed by James Ehnes (May 5-7), conducted by Stéphane Denève.


About The Philadelphia Orchestra
About John Williams
About Stéphane Denève


John Williams
May 4 at 8 PM — Wednesday evening — Verizon Hall at The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

The Philadelphia Orchestra
Stéphane Denève Conductor
Hai-Ye Ni Cello

Sound the Bells!
Excerpts from Close Encounters of the Third Kind
“Sayuri’s Theme” and “Brush on Silk,” from Memoirs of a Geisha
“Harry’s Wondrous World,” from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
“Night Journeys,” from Dracula
“Adventures on Earth,” from E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial
“The Raiders’ March,” from Raiders of the Lost Ark
Excerpts from The Book Thief
“The Barrel Chase Sequence,” from Jaws

The Philadelphia Orchestra
John Williams Conductor

“March of the Resistance” and “Rey’s Theme,” from Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens
“Throne Room” and Finale, from Star Wars

With his instantly recognizable scores, John Williams has redefined the art of film music. He has become undoubtedly one of the world’s most accomplished and successful composers for film and the concert stage, in a career that spans over five decades. Make plans now to join us for this magical evening as living-legend John Williams makes a rare Philadelphia appearance to lead a special benefit concert with The Philadelphia Orchestra.

Maestro Williams, Maestro Denève, and the musicians of The Philadelphia Orchestra are graciously donating their services for this concert. 

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