January 27, 2024
Rick Scott MY SYMPHONY
with the Vancouver Island Symphony
conducted by Cosette Justo Valdes
at the Port Theatre, Nanaimo
Click below for Preview of MY SYMPHONY on SHAW TV
Rick Scott - MY SYMPHONY - with Vancouver Island Symphony
Education Concert February 2016
“The best symphony for children I have ever seen." Principal, Quarterway Elementary, Nanaimo
MY SYMPHONY is a lively participatory concert introducing children to orchestral instruments, featuring internationall renowned folk musician Rick Scott, three time Juno nominee and winner of Parents`Choice, NAPPA Gold and Canadian Folk Music Awards.
Commissioned by the Vancouver Island Symphony with funding support from BC Creative Communities, MY SYMPHONY premiered in February 2014 to standing ovations from 2300 grade 4 students and has since played to 10,000 students over five years and 12 shows at the Port Theatre in Nanaimo. It will be presented as a Family Concert matinee at the Port Theatre on January 27, 2024.
(Click photo for full image)
Based on 10 original Scott compositions orchestrated for 44 musicians and 44 voice children's choir by 24 year old Nanaimonarranger Nico Rhodes, MY SYMPHONY is an inter-generational collaboration with writer Valley Hennell in cahoots with conductor Pierre Simard and choir mistress Patricia Plumley. MY SYMPHONY was commissioned by VIS in 2013 and over 5 years was performed for 10,000 grade 4 students from mid Vancouver Island. http:/www.vancouverislandsymphony.com
“Not a single child left their seat to use the washroom during this show!” Usher, Port Theatre
“Now I want to try the violin. When can we come to the symphony again?” Grade 4 fan letter “
"MY SYMPHONY was the best day of my whole life.” Grade 5 choir member
Everyone is surprised when Rick arrives to join the orchestra with his Appalachian mountain dulcimer and red plastic trombone. Through humour, call and response and singalong, the audience and choir become his exuberant allies as he connives and cajoles to convince the conductor to give him a place in the dulcimer section! By the final reprise of the MY SYMPHONY theme, the audience is declaring the orchestra as their own.
Repertoire includes a Khachaturian overture (SABRE DANCE); an overview of orchestral families (MY SYMPHONY); an introduction to the art of listening (THE STORM and MY FRIEND HAS THE BIGGEST EARS); a musical tour of the string section (STRING THING); a New Orleans style celebration of horns (RICKY & THE RED TROMBONE); a lullaby that puts the entire orchestra to sleep (LAST LULLABY); and a hip hop tribute to Mozart (YO MO CONCERT0).
Read about MY SYMPHONY in International Musician magazine!
WHAT THE CREATORS SAY ABOUT "MY SYMPHONY'':
VIS artistic director and conductor Pierre Simard says: "The Vancouver Island Symphony's collaboration with author Valley Hennell, composer and performer Rick Scott and arranger-orchestrator Nico Rhodes has proved to be the most successful in the orchestra's history of producing educational concerts, on so many levels. Feedback from teachers and principals has been overwhelmingly positive; in many cases, the show was described as the best introduction to orchestra instruments they had ever attended."
Choir director Patricia Plumley says: "The transformation in the children who participated in this unique collaboration throughout the past fall and spring was a privilege to witness and guide. The inspiration, confidence and new level of musical awareness it brought to the 45 children in the choir and to the 2000+ children who watched their exuberant, engaged and polished performances on stage was invaluable."
24 year old arranger Nico Rhodes says: "When I was a kid playing in my pyjamas in the living room I would listen to Beethoven and then I would listen to Rick Scott, my all-time favourite performer. I idolized him. I used to write him letters and he actually wrote back. He was a large influence in my becoming a musician. And now he’s been in my living room, discussing whether a part should be a clarinet or oboe! I have overwhelming gratitude for everyone who agreed to have someone my age do this work. Arranging MY SYMPHONY for 44 instruments and 45 voices has been an amazing once-in-a-billion opportunity that has taught me so much beyond my wildest dreams."
Concertmaster Calvin Dyck says: MY SYMPHONY is unique among in that it not only entertains and educates the children, but involves them in the show as participants. Rarely do I see a "kids show" which keeps students as riveted to the program. Rick Scott is a sympathetic performer, as musicians and as audience we identify and empathize with his desire to play in the symphony, and his search for a "seat in the orchestra". Professional musicians know how difficult it is to obtain that coveted "seat" or job, and the students observe and without realizing it, start to value the symphony, and vicariously want Rick to succeed. This kids program avoids the trap of playing at kids or playing for kids, but involves them in a story where they want to help Rick achieve his dream."
How I Wrote MY SYMPHONY Cartoon by Kari Burk
STORY IN INTERNATIONAL MUSICIAN MAGAZINE:
ORIGINAL PRODUCTION CREDITS:
Concept, script and lyrics by: Rick Scott and Valley Hennell
Music by: Rick Scott except where shown
Conductor: Pierre Simard
Arranger: Nico Rhodes
Music supervisor: J. Douglas Dodd
Choir Director: Patricia Plimley
Production coordinator: Valley Hennell
SABRE DANCE - Aram Khachaturian
MY SYMPHONY – Rick Scott & Valley Hennell
MY FRIEND HAS THE BIGGEST EARS IN THE WORLD – Rick Scott
BALLAD OF THE ELECTRIC SNOWSHOE – Rick Scott & Valley Hennell
STRING THING – Rick Scott, Valley Hennell & Nico Rhodes
RICKY & THE RED TROMBONE – Rick Scott & Valley Hennell
LAST LULLABY – Rick Scott, Valley Hennell & Nico Rhodes
OCEAN – Rick Scott
YO MO CONCERTO – Rick Scott, Valley Hennell, Harris Van Berkel, Nico Rhodes & Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
MY SYMPHONY REPRISE - Rick Scott & Valley Hennell