TCC’s Signature Symphony Announces a Season with Beatles, Harry Potter, Gershwin

Courtesy photo
SIGNATURE QUARTET WITH WOODY: Pictured are members of the Signature Quartet at the Woody Guthrie Center in Tulsa. Woody Guthrie’s music will be part of the “An Oklahoma Journey” chamber music concert on Saturday, November 6 with the Signature Quartet and Signature Chorale. Signature Quartet members in the photo are Corbin Bodley, violin; Sarah Thomas, violin; Erica D. Parker, cello; and Jeffrey A. Smith, viola.

Signature Symphony at Tulsa Community College announces the professional orchestra will return to in-person performances at the VanTrease Performing Arts Center for Education for the 2021-2022 season. With the theme Journey Together, the schedule includes seven concerts and continues the nationwide search to name Signature Symphony’s next artistic director and conductor. 

The new season, sponsored by TTCU Federal Credit Union, begins with three chamber music performances in the Fall followed by Christmas in Tulsa, a long-standing holiday tradition. Then, each of the three artistic director finalists will conduct a concert in Spring 2022. 

“Despite a year of changes and interruptions, Signature Symphony played through the challenges to deliver artistic opportunities to our community members. We are looking forward to welcoming audience members back to our performance home,” said Kelly Clark, School of Visual and Performing Arts Dean at TCC. 

The season begins with “Cool and Classical: Jazz à la Lighthouse,” on Saturday, September 18 with a musical journey to the 1950s and “The Lighthouse Café,” a jazz club featured in the Hollywood movie musical “La La Land.” Then, Saturday, October 16, Oklahoma-based composer and member of the Chickasaw Nation, Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate, takes the stage with “American Indian Expressions,” to discuss his composition style and present several of his pieces followed by “An Oklahoma Journey” with Signature Quartet and Signature Chorale on Saturday, Nov. 6. 

Signature Symphony will resume traditional, full orchestra performances with “Christmas in Tulsa,” featuring long-time collaborator Scott Coulter and showcasing Tulsa Sings!  performers and finish the season with three concerts developed by the artistic director finalists Scott Seaton, Alejandro Gómez Guillén, and Robert Franz. 

“These finalists represent the top candidates from our national search, and each brings their own style and personality to the Signature Symphony stage. As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in 2020, we extended the search for our new artistic director until we could welcome them to Tulsa and allow our audiences to get to know the finalists and be part of the selection process,” said Clark. 

On Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022, Seaton explores a common theme between a famous rock band and the 19th century French composer Hector Berlioz. In “Love and Obsession: The Beatles to Berlioz,” the program highlights the music written passionately about love with the Beatles compiling millions of obsessed fans and Berlioz using his obsession with a stage actress to inspire “Symphonie Fantastique.” 

In “Fantastical: Firebird meets Harry Potter,” Guillén presents a symphonic journey of myth, magic and folklore on Saturday, February 26, 2022. The evening pairs John Williams’ iconic movie score and Stravinsky’s timeless masterpiece with music by the Brazilian-American powerhouse Clarice Assad and Argentina’s versatile Osvaldo Golijov. 

The season ends with “Trailblazers in American Music,” as Robert Franz conducts a concert featuring American composers Florence Price and George Gershwin on April 9, 2022. Groundbreaking in their own ways, Price was the first African American woman to have an orchestral piece played by a major U.S. orchestra in 1933 and Gershwin’s insistence that his opera, “Porgy and Bess”, be performed only by African American singers was revolutionary in 1935 when first performed. 

Tickets are $20 for general admission and on sale now for the first three chamber music concerts. Attendance will be limited to allow for physical distancing. Tickets for the full-orchestra concerts will go on sale later in the fall with packages and individual tickets available. Due to public health guidelines or TCC policy, the season schedule is subject to change. 

For past season ticket holders, Signature Symphony staff will make every effort to accommodate seating preferences as the orchestra resumes normal ticketing and concert operations. Additional information is available at or you can email or call 918-595-7777 if you have questions. 

This project is supported in part by the Oklahoma Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Oklahoma and the National Endowment for the Arts.