If you haven’t yet noticed that summer is racing towards us, here’s a sure sign: The Charlotte Symphony on Wednesday morning announced the schedule for its Summer Pops series, meaning it’s time to start dusting off your picnic baskets and planning those date nights.
The Summer Pops events – once again to be held at Symphony Park at SouthPark Mall – are heavy on Hollywood and Broadway, with nods to fare as recent as “Beauty and the Beast” and as old as “My Fair Lady.” There’ll also be an entire night dedicated to “Star Wars,” and another that ends, appropriately, with fireworks.
Here are the five programs, listed by the dates the orchestra plays them:
Hooray for Hollywood, 8:15 p.m. Sunday, June 4: Themes from Hollywood blockbusters including “West Side Story,” “The Pink Panther,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Harry Potter” and more. Albert-George Schram will conduct.
Jazz at the Park with Jazz Arts Initiative, 8:15 p.m. Sunday, June 11: The Symphony will be joined by musicians of the Jazz Arts Initiative in performing standards including “In the Mood,” “Stardust,” “Moonlight Serenade,” “Chattanooga Choo Choo,” “Sing, Sing, Sing” and more. Keitaro Harada will conduct.
Star Wars The Music, 8:15 p.m. Sunday, June 18, 8:15 p.m.: A celebration of the 40th anniversary of “Star Wars,” featuring highlights of John Williams’ scores spanning all seven films. Christopher James Lees will conduct.
Best of Broadway, 8:15 p.m. Sunday, June 25: A night of Broadway show tunes including selections from “The Sound of Music,” “My Fair Lady,” “Les Miserables,” “Grease!,” “Wicked” and “Phantom of the Opera.” Christopher James Lees will conduct.
Celebrate America! With Fireworks!, 8:15 p.m. Saturday, July 1: A salute to America with a night of patriotic favorites including Sousa Marches, “God Bless America” and the Armed Forces medley. The finale will include a fireworks display. Albert-George Schram will conduct.
Parking is free, and gates for each concert will open at 5 p.m. Prelude performances will begin at 7.
New this season: Reid’s Fine Foods will be the exclusive food and beverage retailer during concerts, offering a selection of meats, cheeses, sandwiches, salads, desserts, wine and beer. Reid’s will also have chef-curated picnic baskets available for pre-order ahead of each event.
Individual tickets will go on sale May 1, with pricing as follows: Adults $12 in advance, $14 day of show; ages 13-18 $5 in advance, $7 day of; kids 12 and younger get in free. (For “Celebrate America!,” add $2 in advance for adults, $4 day of.) There are also “premium seating club” tickets offering reserved seats, and a “GoPass” that includes multiple packs of flexible tickets.