Literary Soundscapes

Saturday, March 23, 2024 at 7:30PM

First Presbyterian Church of Berkeley 2407 Dana St, Berkeley, CA 94704

Enjoy the enchantment of musical storytelling as Berkeley Symphony presents a captivating concert bringing literature to life. Witness the West Coast premiere of Joel Puckett's orchestral song cycle, featuring the extraordinary tenor Nicholas Phan, inspired by Walt Whitman's poetic childhood account. Immerse yourself in the whimsical melodies of Mendelssohn's A Midsummer Night's Dream, capturing the essence of one of Shakespeare’s most revered comedies. These works are bookended by an extraordinary fusion of Langston Hughes' epic poem and Laura Karpman's interdisciplinary creation, Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz, Part 1 and Part 3, conveying a rich blend of American voices.

Joseph Young


Nicholas Phan


Joel Puckett

There Was a Child Who Went Forth (WEST COAST PREMIERE)

Nicholas Phan

Laura Karpman

Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz, Part 1


Selections from A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Laura Karpman

Ask Your Mama: 12 Moods for Jazz, Part 3

Free Pre-Concert Chat 1 hour before

These informative and engaging pre-concert talks offer fascinating insights into the music you are about to experience. Learn about the program’s cultural and historical context, along with guided listening. Additionally, there will be live interviews with guest artists, composers, and orchestra musicians! Music talks take place one hour before all Symphonic Series concerts, excluding the opening night concert. Admission is free to all ticket holders.

About the Artists