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Michael Christie and New West Symphony Present the 2020-2021 Season: Global Sounds. Local Cultures.

New West Symphony, Anne Akiko Meyers & Michael Christie by Eugene Yankevich 

As Michael Christie concluded his first season as Music Director of New West Symphony and entered his second, he quickly worked with the staff and board to adapt current and future programming to digital platforms. In the New West Symphony's reimagined season, Global Sounds. Local Cultures, they will present eight mini-festivals, held from October through June, that highlight the music, cultures and family traditions throughout Greater Los Angeles, while emphasizing connections with orchestra repertoire. These are all digital concerts, paired with engaging complementary content, to be available streamed or on-demand. In addition to NWS’s concerts, our mini-festivals will include Meet the Artist/cultural expert interviews, curated playlists, food and lifestyle explorations, restaurant discounts, and after-party invitations.

Michael Christie's Season Announcement Video with Natalia Staneva, Executive Director

Spectrum News 1 went behind the scenes to look at the process behind filming and producing the first festival, A Tour of Japan, featuring Los Angeles-based violinist Anne Akiko Meyers and New West Symphony concertmaster Alyssa Park, plus performances by Pasadena-based Makoto Taiko, a Japanese drum ensemble; San Diego-based koto performer Reiko Obata; and pianist Benjamin Krasner.


Program details will be released four weeks prior to the streaming dates at

A Tour of Japan

Sunday, October 18, 2020, 3 p.m. PT

A Tour of India

Sunday, November 15, 2020, 3 p.m. PT

Violins of Hope

Sunday, January 24, 2021, 3 p.m. PT

Black History Month

Sunday, February 14, 2021, 3 p.m. PT

A Tour of South Korea

Sunday, March 7, 2021, 3 p.m. PT

Persian Festival

Sunday, April 11, 2021 3 p.m. PT

A Tour of Mexico

Sunday, May 2, 2021, 3 p.m. PT

A Tour of China

Sunday, June 13, 2021, 3 p.m. PT

Additional Online Events

In the midst of planning the new season, Christie and the NWS reacted to the changing times of the coronavirus pandemic with some inventive online programs, and were recognized by City Lifestyle: “New West Symphony overcame technical difficulties and learned how to offer online programs and classes, including music imagery and mindfulness, virtual concerts celebrating Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, and a fundraiser featuring a ‘battle of the sections’ with patrons contributing to their favorite team.” You can watch the Mother's Day, Father's Day, and Memorial Day programs here, along with a few other videos, including a "“Sections 101” with music expert David Ravetch.

THE BATTLE OF THE SECTIONS: Orchestra Edition The New West Symphony’s gala went virtual in June. Maestro Christie challenged the orchestra sections to compete for the honor of being named “The Best Orchestra Section in the History of the World," while competing to raise the most money for the orchestra. You can watch the event and learn more here.

Michael Christie's Jukebox

Christie used some of his time at home to assemble playlists of favorite performance videos into a series called Michael Christie's Jukebox. From Europe's greatest concert halls, the world's iconic rock venues and the new homes for music that are informing and changing the world, "The Jukebox" became a fun place to get to know artists you love or may not know yet, alongside vintage recordings that are the soundtrack of our lives. Several episodes featured friends and colleagues all over the world as guests, via Zoom, including Kevin Puts, Reena Esmail, Olga Kern, Ricky Ian Gordon, Mark Adamo, and John Corigliano. You can watch Michael Christie's Jukebox here.

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