The Student Newspaper of Highline College

Federal Way Symphony plans live concert

Faith Chao Staff Reporter May 20, 2021

The Federal Way Symphony returns to perform live months after their last concert. 

Some 16 months since their last in-person concert, the Federal Way Symphony will return to perform live with their newly-appointed music director, Adam Stern.  

“Reconnections: A Return to the Stage” will be held at the Federal Way Performing Arts and Events Center on June 13 at 3 p.m. 

The one-hour concert will consist of five musical pieces: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Eine kleine Nachtmusik; Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Andante cantabile; Gustav Holst’s St. Paul’s Suite; Arthur Honegger’s Pastorale d’été (Summer Pastorale); and Joseph Haydn’s Symphony No. 30 in C, Alleluja.

“There will be a mixture of familiar favorites, some not-so-well known pieces, and at least one piece per concert that is rarely, if ever, encountered in the concert hall,” Stern said. “In this case [it is] the Honegger Pastorale, one of the most sensuously beautiful pieces you’ll ever hear anywhere.” 

This is how he plans on programming the symphony’s concerts from here on in, said Stern, who has been conducting for almost 50 years. 

This concert marks Stern’s debut as the Federal Way Symphony’s music director and conductor. 

Everyone is anticipating the return to the stage to perform live again, said Stern. 

“Not only the musicians in the Federal Way Symphony, but my colleagues all around the world are all eager beyond measure to make music together again, for live audiences,” Stern said. 

 “Our need to communicate in the best way we know how is at the bursting point,” he said.   

Stern lived in Los Angeles until 1992 and moved to Seattle to become the associate conductor of the Seattle Symphony.

Following his time after the Seattle Symphony, he has been associated with several local orchestras, two of which he is also the conductor of: the Seattle Philharmonic and the Sammamish Symphony. 

Stern had started in college as a flutist but enrolled in the conducting class to “round out my musical knowledge,” he said, and to “see what it was like on the other side of the podium. After my first experience in front of the college orchestra, I realized that I had truly ‘found myself’.”

The Federal Way Symphony is working with the performing arts center to make the concert both safe and comfortable for the performers and audience. 

With physical distancing that meets Washington state requirements, seatings will be available in solos, duets (two seats together) and quartets (four seats together). 

To get more information and tickets, please visit