Sir Anthony Hopkins Scores big With Dallas Symphony Orchestra

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Academy Award-Winning Actor Surprises Audience by Taking the Podium to Conduct Performance Encore

It was an absolute thrill to not only hear my work performed by such an incredible orchestra, but to actually lead them in a performance; a performance that included music that up until that point I had only heard in my imagination

Dallas audiences were abuzz last night in anticipation of hearing original compositions created by famed actor Sir Anthony Hopkins. No one in the full house crowd anticipated Hopkins himself taking the podium and leading the great Dallas Symphony Orchestra in an encore performance of his original work Schizoid Salsa.

Sir Anthony Hopkins, or Tony as he prefers to be called, was greeted by a rousing standing ovation last night as he made his first ever bows from the podium stage. The musicians greeted his performance with rambunctious stomping – the common sign of appreciation given by orchestra musicians to only the finest of conductors.

“It was an absolute thrill to not only hear my work performed by such an incredible orchestra, but to actually lead them in a performance; a performance that included music that up until that point I had only heard in my imagination,” said Hopkins. “What a rush!”

Hopkins, originally slated to only briefly introduce his compositions and then take a seat in the audience, was asked to conduct one of his pieces during rehearsal. With the support of the DSO musicians, he decided to conduct during the performance as well. “I decided this was a rare occasion, and that I would regret the missed opportunity,” said Hopkins.

In addition to Schizoid Salsa, the program included The Masque of Time, a new original composition by Hopkins, and music he created for the films Slipstream and August, as well as other original compositions and pieces from some of his films written by others.

Last nights world premiere of music by Anthony Hopkins is just another example of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s commitment to showcasing modern works. In addition to works by Hopkins, during the 2008-2009 season the DSO will premiere three major pieces. Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steven Stucky’s August 4, 1964 – A Day in History received its world premiere in September, followed by the DSO co-commissioned premiere of Bright Sheng’s Harp Concerto featuring Yolanda Kondonassis. Alexander Raskatov’s Violin Concerto will receive its world premiere in April, with DSO Concertmaster Emanuel Borok as soloist. Past major world premieres have included works by Roberto Sierra, Augusta Read Thomas, George Tsontakis, Lowell Liebermann and many more.

The Dallas Symphony Orchestra proudly presented An Evening of Music with Anthony Hopkins & the DSO – A World Premiere Friday, October 17, 2008 at 8:00 p.m. Tickets for this event ranged from $35 to $75. For photos or video clips of last night’s performance, please contact DSO Director of Public Relations Stacie Adams at 214.871.4082 or s.adams@dalsym.com.

About the Dallas Symphony Orchestra
The Dallas Symphony Orchestra has a rich, 108-year history of artistic excellence. After an exhaustive search, the DSO named Jaap van Zweden as music director beginning in the 2008-2009 season. Eminent music directors such as Antal Dorati, Paul Kletzki, Georg Solti, Eduardo Mata and Andrew Litton laid the groundwork for important elements of today’s DSO, including extensive touring and recording, special community and education concerts and the building of the world-renowned Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center.

As the largest performing arts organization in the Southwest, financial stability is a key element of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s success. Since inception of its 10-year strategic plan, A Bold Plan for Greatness, in 2003, the DSO has demonstrated four consecutive years of balanced budgets, a rise in annual donations to their highest level ever and a more than 70% increase over five years in an endowment that now exceeds $120 million. To learn more about the Dallas Symphony Orchestra please visit dallassymphony.com.

Contacts:

Stacie Adams
214.871.4082
s.adams @ dalsym.com

Laura Korenman
214.871.4061
l.korenman @ dalsym.com

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