We love live concerts at Only in the Peg. Winnipeg has some of the country’s best live music venues, from dive-bar blues to the next big name in dubstep – although we’re not actually sure if dubstep is still a thing #gettingold. But there’s one venue in town that’s been around for over 50 years that we keep coming back to for consistently great music – and that’s the Centennial Concert Hall. More specifically, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (WSO), which has been one of the city’s go-to arts destinations for 70 years now and continues to put on some of the best shows you can get to.
If you’ve never seen the WSO in their element before, you’re missing out. There’s a reason these pieces have been around for 200 years or more – they’re some of the most incredible music ever put down on paper. Everyone knows those famous opening notes of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony ( ba da da dummm), but there’s a lot more where that came from. Classical music will take you on a roller coaster of emotions, from joy to grief to awe and back again in a two-hour show. And nobody, and we mean nobody, does it better than our very own WSO.
The symphony offers a full range of shows, from this weekend’s Charlie Chaplin movie City Lights with the symphony playing along live, to Anton Bruckner’s epic 9th Symphony on March 9-10, and so much more. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a long-time symphony lover or don’t know a flute from a cello, there’s definitely a show somewhere in the repertoire that’s bound to have you air-conducting along with the orchestra (we’re kidding, please don’t do that).
Young arts lovers watching their bank accounts have good reason to be excited, because the WSO has an offer that will blow you away. The Soundcheck program is open to anyone ages 15-30, and you couldn’t find a better deal for classical music anywhere. 85 dollars will get you a season pass for over 20 performances, or members can get $15 tickets to any individual concert. Your pass also lets you get an extra ticket for a friend for $29.50 – not a bad price for an unique (and pretty fancy) date night!
Soundcheck members are twice-lucky, because a few times a year the WSO will host some free social events. Just this weekend, the WSO hosted a ‘Beer and Beethoven’ event. Local craft brewery Stone Angel Brewing Co. had some free samples of their Luther’s Folly Blonde Ale (a good balance of hops and acidity made a golden-tasting, very easy to drink brew), some snacks and a chance to meet some of the incredible WSO musicians.
We have it on good authority that more Soundcheck events are going to be happening this year – we don’t want to spoil the surprise, but rumour is that some special tours and culinary activities might be in the cards to wrap up this season. Want more information? We’ll share on social media as soon as we hear more, but you should really sign up for the Soundcheck program to be the first in the know.
The second half of the WSO’s season is well underway, and there are a lot of not-miss performances on the horizon – but the most significant part of this season is that it’s the last for our fabulous 12-year conductor Alexander Mickelthwate (you might recognize him from some of our Tourism Winnipeg ads). Don’t miss your opportunity to check out the Maestro in all his glory on some of his very last Winnipeg performances!