The QSO, under the direction of Dr. Bruce Briney, will perform Gustav Holst’s “The Planets” as Dr. Josť Salgado’s critically acclaimed film plays on Morrison Theater’s new 20-foot projection screen.
Dr. José Francisco Salgado’s passion for astronomy began when he found one of his father’s books on the moon landing.
“I was captivated by the fact that we visited another world and the technology that took us there,” says Salgado. “I wanted to study space. I didn’t even know the word 'astronomy.'"
He achieved that dream, becoming an astronomer at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago and an adjunct professor at Benedictine University. Later Salgado applied his skills in illustration and photography to create astronomy-themed artwork that would "provoke curiosity and a sense of wonder about the Earth and the Universe".
This evolved into a series of projects where art is used to communicate science and to inspire people to learn about science on their own. The flagship project of this series has been the Science & Symphony Films, which consist of live performances of classical music accompanied by high-definition science films.
The Quincy Symphony Orchestra has teamed up with Salgado for a Science & Symphony performance at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 21. The QSO, under the direction of Dr. Bruce Briney, will perform Gustav Holst’s “The Planets” as Salgado’s critically acclaimed film plays on Morrison Theater’s new 20-foot projection screen. The screen and accompanying technology is a gift to the Quincy Junior High through a collaborative effort of the Quincy Symphony Orchestra Association, Quincy Public Schools, QPS Foundation, The Marion Gardner Jackson Trust and Encore! Symphony Volunteer Council.
Salgado says audiences may expect a “pretty slideshow,” but instead he created “a film that augments the music instead of competing for attention. It gives the impression that the film came first and then someone scored the music, when in fact, it’s the opposite.”
The orchestra will also debut the newly commissioned “Steel and Smoke” by Illinois composer Jacob Bancks. “Smoke and Steel” is based loosely on the poem by Carl Sandburg. The QSO commissioned Bancks to write the piece to honor Briney’s 10th year as conductor, which coincides with the organization’s 70th anniversary.
Tickets for “The Planets” are available in advance at Quincy HyVee, County Market, Sturhahn Jewelers, the symphony office or qsoa.org. Tickets are $15 for seniors and $18 for adults. Thanks in part to support from the Tracy Family Foundation, children 18 and under are admitted free to all QSO concerts. Current students, faculty and staff of Quincy University, Hannibal-LaGrange University and Culver-Stockton College are admitted free by showing their school identification.