Trey Anastasio kicks-off his sold-out Winter 2012 Orchestral Tour tonight at Symphony Hall in Atlanta with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Scott Dunn conducting. The tour also includes performances with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra on February 14, the Colorado Symphony on February 28, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic on March 10.
Anastasio has a rich history of orchestral performances spanning over a decade. Anastasio made his orchestral debut with the Vermont Youth Orchestra on February 2, 2001 in Troy, NY (reprised two nights later at The Flynn Theatre in Burlington), with Troy Peters conducting. This performance included two compositions by Trey’s mentor, the late Ernie Stires, “Chat Rooms” and “Samson Riffs.” The highlight of these shows was the orchestral debut of “Guyute” that reintegrated the song’s original elements that would – in the Phish repertoire – evolve as “My Friend, My Friend.” These performances were capped by renditions of “The Inlaw Josie Wales” with Trey on acoustic guitar.
The Vermont Youth Orchestra’s string quartet joined Trey Anastasio Band for two performances in 2002, on June 15 in Essex Junction, VT and on June 18 at Radio City Music Hall. These performances included “The Inlaw Josie Wales,” “Flock of Words” and “At the Gazebo.”
On April 6, 2004 Anastasio released Seis de Mayo, an all-instrumental collection of compositions including strings, brass, and a full orchestral rendition of “Guyute.” Several of these arrangements would make their public debut on June 13, 2004 at Bonnaroo with members of Trey Anastasio Band and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra (later named Orchestra Nashville). This performance is available for download from LivePhish. Anastasio would again team up with the VYO at New York’s famed Carnegie Hall on September 14, 2004 for a performance that featured a repertoire of all-Vermont based composers.
Anastasio would return to Carnegie Hall on February 9, 2005 as part of the annual Tibet House benefit. This time joined by the Scorchio Quintet string ensemble, this performance featured the debut of Anastasio’s “Bar 17.” The release of Anastasio’s album Bar 17 was celebrated with two performances at New York’s Webster Hall on October 8 and October 9, 2006. These gigs featured a string quartet conducted by Don Hart and the introduction of, among others, “Goodbye Head” and “Divided Sky” to the orchestral realm.
Anastasio returned to the orchestral stage on September 27, 2008 performing with Orchestra Nashville, again with Don Hart conducting. This performance was highlighted by the world premiere of what is arguably Anastasio’s orchestral masterpiece, “Time Turns Elastic.” Teaming with Don Hart and Northwest Sinfonia, Anastasio would release the CD Time Turns Elastic on May 12, 2009.
On May 21, 2009 Anastasio teamed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Marin Alsop. In addition to the Anastasio’s orchestral standards, this performance introduced orchestral renderings of “Pebbles and Marbles,” “First Tube” and “If I Could.” On September 12, 2009 Anastasio returned to Carnegie Hall, this time with the New York Philharmonic conducted by Asher Fisch. This critically acclaimed performance included the orchestra premiere of “You Enjoy Myself.” Anastasio’s most recent orchestral endeavor was on November 18, 2010 at Princeton University’s Richardson Auditorium, again accompanied by Scorchio Quintet. This performance – made available as a free LivePhish download – included first-time orchestral treatments of “Gone,” “Stash” and “Wolfman’s Brother.”
Stay tuned to phish.net for full coverage of Anastasio’s symphony tour. Break a leg, Trey!