December 13, 2019 | Hill Auditorium

Behind The Music

Join your Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra in welcoming the holidays with some of the most beloved music of the season. Hill Auditorium will glow with the magical spirt of this cherished A2SO tradition. This year, we present Duke Ellington’s Nutcracker Suite. Enjoy this unique and imaginative jazz interpretation of Tchaikovsky’s timeless ballet. Hill Auditorium will ring with the vibrant colors of Ellington’s arrangement as the A2SO celebrates the holiday season. 


ELLINGTON Nutcracker Suite

MILLER Let There Be Peace on Earth

More holiday cheer to be announced!

Duke Ellington & The Nutcracker

Fresh off a historic recording project for the Queen of England in 1959, the composing duo of Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn embarked on a new project to reimagine the ballet score of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker. The incredible imagination of Duke Ellington was no secret. With a background in the visual arts, Ellington’s compositions and arrangements are often praised for dipping into this background resulting in unique orchestration and sonic colors. The Nutcracker Suite does not simply place jazz rhythms underneath the well-known themes from the Russian composer, it reimagines these theme. The result is a suite that can be heard as entirely Ellington’s while remaining firmly in the spirit of Tchaikovsky’s original work.

Further Listening

By The Numbers

Reindeer leading Santa's sleigh

First performance of Ellington's Nutcracker Suite

Musicians in Your A2SO

2019/2020 Season Schedule

September 13, 2019 | Ax Plays Brahms

October 12, 2019 | Made In America

November 2, 2019 | Liszt & Tchaikovsky

November 9, 2019 | The Music Of Star Wars

December 13, 2019 | Holiday Pops

January 18, 2020 | Mozart Birthday Bash

March 14 & 15, 2020 | Best Of Broadway

March 21, 2020 | West Side Story

April 25, 2020 Measha & Mahler