February 20

NC Symphony Summerfest 2019 Lineup at Booth

Each summer, thousands of North Carolinians gather for music under the stars at UNC REX Healthcare Summerfest concerts. Held at the Symphony’s summer home in Cary, Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Summerfest concerts offer classical masterworks and pops programs in a relaxed and family-friendly outdoor environment. Concertgoers spread out blankets, lawn chairs, and picnics, and enjoy the picturesque natural surroundings and pre-concert activities such as the popular Instrument Zoo.

A highlight of Summerfest 2019 is the Space Spectacular, through which NCS joins other statewide arts organizations in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. The Symphony performs selections from Holst’s The Planets, the Star Wars saga, and more—and costumed Star Wars characters from the 501st Legion will be on site for photo opportunities. The summer starts off with Berlioz’s passionate Symphonie fantastique on Memorial Day weekend, and as part of the Town of Cary’s annual “Play with the Pros,” citizen musicians will join NCS musicians on stage for several selections. Other much-anticipated Summerfest programs include Grammy-nominated violinist Jennifer Frautschi performing Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Piazzolla’s Four Seasons of Buenos Aires, and the return of North Carolina native and singer-songwriter Ben Folds. In a special summertime program apart from the Summerfest season, Booth Amphitheatre presents NCS with pop-culture satirist “Weird Al” Yankovic. As always, the Symphony performs patriotic favorites at the Town of Cary’s free Independence Day celebration at Booth Amphitheatre.

2019 UNC REX HEALTHCARE SUMMERFEST at Koka Booth Amphitheatre

 Symphonie Fantastique | May 25, 2019

NCS performs the bewitching masterpiece by Berlioz, Symphonie fantastique, which tells the tale of an artist who becomes unraveled by unrequited love. Friends and neighbors will join the Symphony’s professional musicians onstage as part of the Town of Cary’s annual "Play with the Pros" in this Memorial Day weekend concert.

A Space Spectacular | June 1, 2019

NCS joins in a statewide celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, journeying through space and beyond with music from Star Wars, Holst’s The Planets, and more. Costumed Star Wars characters will be on site to meet and take photos with audience members.

Piazzolla’s Four Seasons | June 7, 2019
Piazzolla paints vivid musical images of Argentina in the tango-filled Four Seasons of Buenos Aires, featuring Grammy-nominated violinist Jennifer Frautschi. This program captures the playful rhythms, familiar dance tunes, and fiery passion of Latin and Latin-inspired music with works by Copland, Márquez, and more.

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons | June 8, 2019

In the most well-known violin concertos ever written, Vivaldi evokes the sounds of the world’s natural wonders—singing birds in springtime, raging summer thunderstorms, autumnal countryside scenes, and the icy beauty of winter. Mendelssohn echoes Vivaldi’s talent for musical storytelling in his ethereal Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and selections from Handel’s Water Music round out this program of familiar favorites.

Classics Under the Stars | June 15, 2019

NCS shares favorite, familiar light classics, including Rossini’s William Tell Overture and works by Mozart and Beethoven.

Ben Folds | June 22, 2019

North Carolina native Ben Folds—singer, songwriter, and pianist—joins NCS for an electric crossover concert. The classically-trained pop/rock star brings unique energy to the stage as he performs his hits through the years.

Broadway’s Greatest Hits | June 29, 2019

Some of the biggest songs from Broadway’s biggest blockbusters come to Booth Amphitheatre. Show-tune lovers will indulge in an evening of songs from Wicked, The Phantom of the Opera, Chicago, Cats, The Lion King, Les Misérables, Mamma Mia!, and Beauty and the Beast, all performed by top vocalists.

Independence Day Celebration | July 4, 2019

At this Triangle tradition, NCS salutes the red, white and blue with patriotic favorites, high-spirited classics, and a fireworks display over Symphony Lake.

Russian Nights | July 6, 2019

Vivacious orchestral showstoppers by Russian masters—from heart-racing overtures by Shostakovich, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Glinka, to familiar romantic tunes by Khachaturian, to the theatrics and pure fun of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture—will make for an evening of splendor.

The Music of Chicago with Brass Transit | July 12, 2019
The legendary band
Chicago melded the musical diversity of their beloved city into an iconic sound, with rock ‘n’ roll melodies and unforgettable horns. Together with the Symphony, Chicago tribute band Brass Transit performs hits including "Saturday in the Park," "25 or 6 to 4," “If You Leave Me Now,” and "You're the Inspiration.”

Beach Party Starring the Embers | July 20, 2019
At this Summerfest tradition, The Embers perform Carolina beach music that will have audiences singing along and dancing on the lawn until the stars come out. (NCS does not perform on this concert.)