The music of film composer John Williams is so popular that Carmel Symphony Orchestra Artistic Director Janna Hymes decided one concert wouldn’t be enough.
“The Best of John Williams — A Tribute Concert” will be presented at 7:30 p.m. March 11 and 3 p.m. March. 12 at the Palladium in Carmel. The concert is the Masterworks 4 concert of the 2022-23 season.
“In my understanding, the CSO has never performed the same Masterworks twice,” Hymes said. “We decided with the popularity of this concert, the draw would be great, and we want to give everyone the opportunity to hear this amazing music accompanied by film.”
The concerts’ playlist includes selections from some of Hollywood’s biggest hits, including “Star Wars,” “Hook,” “Schindler’s List,” “AI,” “Harry Potter,” “JFK,” “Jurassic Park,” “Superman,” “Jaws,” “Memoirs of a Geisha,” “E.T.” and “Raiders of the Lost Ark.”
“John Williams’ music has a distinctive sound and is easily recognizable because of the melodies, orchestration and connection to story,” Hymes said. “I have always been a fan of this iconic composer and incredibly kind human being.”
Hymes said the CSO has played Williams’ music on various concerts but not a concert designated solely to his work.
“I love them all, but I think ‘Schindler’s List’ is one of the most beautiful pieces in the repertoire,” Hymes said.
The concert will be accompanied by film clips from movies on the big screen.
“The film clips will correspond to the music, and the experience will be spectacular and a first for the CSO,” Hymes said. “We are so excited about these upcoming performances and anticipate a couple of fantastic crowds. We’ve really expanded and experimented with our programming during this 47th CSO season, and this John Williams production is shaping up to be a highlight of a season that’s already been noteworthy for multiple highlights.”
The concerts will be performed on the same weekend that 91-year-old Williams, a five-time Academy Award winner, is up for another Oscar, his 53rd nomination, this time for the score to Steven Spielberg’s semi-autobiographical film, “The Fabelmans.”
“John Williams’ music is the soundtrack not only to some of Hollywood’s most iconic films, but the soundtrack to our lives as well,” Hymes said. “It’s the music you know and love, from the movies you know by heart.”
The Palladium was sold out for January’s Pops concert featuring Serpentine Fire: The Music of Earth, Wind & Fire, and was nearly sold out for two Holiday Pops shows in early December.
“We definitely feed off the energy that emanates from the audience, and that’s been something we’ve experienced and really enjoyed this season,” Hymes said. “Serpentine Fire was just crazy with the fans standing, singing and dancing at their seats and in the aisles. If you think a symphony orchestra performance is stuffy and serious and straight-laced, well, you need to experience a Carmel Symphony Orchestra performance, and ‘The Best of John Williams’ would be a great place to start.”
The Masterworks 5 concert will feature Sterling Elliott on cello and is set for April. 22. The season concludes May 6 with a Pops concert featuring Respect — A Tribute to Aretha Franklin.
For more, visit carmelsymphony.org. The concerts are sponsored by ParaPRO.