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2023-2024 Concert Schedule

Our Music Director and dedicated staff have spent the summer curating a season that offers a comforting mix of old favorites paired with new-to-you pieces that your family will be happy to add to your listening repertoire. The result is a collection of performances that are nothing short of spectacular. But that’s not all – this season also brings some exciting new collaborations and a fresh take on our pre-concert talks to deepen your appreciation for the music and enhance your concert experience.

Mark your calendars, spread the word, gather your family and friends, and get ready to be a part of another extraordinary season of the performing arts in Milwaukee. Tickets available now!


The Saturday Classics concert series welcomes newcomers and established symphony enthusiasts alike.  Held at the elegant yet inviting Bradley Symphony Center at 212 W Wisconsin Ave in Milwaukee, this concert series makes high-quality classical music accessible to all.  Admission to Saturday Classics concerts is FREE with suggested donation.  Saturday Classics concerts begin at 2:00pm, and feature a pre-concert “Unlocking the Score” presentation on-stage at 1:30pm.  

Gain a better understanding of each concert’s theme and learn the secrets of the composers by attending Festival City Symphony’s pre-concert presentation, “Unlocking the Score.”  Music educator Lynn Roginske will help audience members of all ages listen for harmonies, watch for crescendos, and feel the music more deeply.  All are invited to this free talk from stage, which begins thirty minutes prior to the concert start time.



Beyond Words: Harmonious Symphonic Poems
Saturday, November 18, 2023, 2:00pm
Festival City Symphony kicks off this season’s Saturday Classics series with Dmitri Shostakovich’s dark and subtly defiant 1967 symphonic poem “October.Though commissioned by the Soviet Party, this stunning piece is now recognized as offering more commentary than praise of his country’s leadership. Bookending this expressive concert will be the familiar “Slovanic March” by Pyotr Tchaikovsky and the thrilling “Symphony No. 2” by the multi-hyphenate composer, scientist and lyricist Alexander Borodin. Seasoned concert-goers will enjoy FCS’s interpretation of these masterpieces, and new audiences will be glad to introduce these works into their musical vocabulary.

Dmitri Shostakovich

A Classical Affair to Remember
Saturday, January 27, 2024, 2:00pm
Join Festival City Symphony for a concert of romantic music that will have the audience feeling the love. FCS’s string section will open with selected movements of Antonin Dvořák’s sumptuous “Serenade for Strings,” followed by its stellar French horn section enchanting concert goers with Robert Schumann’s “Konzertstück for Four Horns,” a rare treat due to it being performed infrequently. This sentimental afternoon will conclude with a passionate trip through Italy thanks to Felix Mendelssohn’s athletic “Symphony No. 4”, commonly known as the “Italian.” This concert is sure to inspire each audience member to amorously enter their Romantic Era. Click here to learn more about the Konzertstück horn soloists!

Antonin Dvořák

Suite Dreams of France
Saturday, March 9, 2024, 2:00pm
Savor the fairytale charm of the French countryside with Festival City Symphony as the orchestra performs whimsical Suites by composers Emmanuel Chabrier and Darius Milhaud. Full of fanciful charm and upbeat melodies, the opening Suites are the perfect prelude to Igor Stravinsky’s famous ballet suite from The Firebird. Premiered in Paris in 1910, Stravinsky draws from folklore to tell the tale of a powerful ogre who captures young princesses and turns their rescuers to stone. Will the princesses get free? Will the Firebird turn to stone? Join us live to have your own happily ever after-noon.

Emmanuel Chabrier

Classical Echoes of American Life
Saturday, April 27, 2024, 2:00pm
Festival City Symphony ends its Saturday Classics season with a portrait of the diversity of America as presented by four distinct musical voices. Roberto Sierra’s “La Salsa” and Leonard Bernstein’s “Symphonic Dances from West Side Story” will start and end the program, energizing audiences with their Puerto Rican rhythms. In between, works by Florence Price and Aaron Copland convey the trials, tribulations and celebrations of American ancestors in “Ethiopia’s Shadow in America” and “Our Town Suite”. Concert goers will be tapping their toes and riveted by the layered and complex harmonies that make up the fabric of American music.

Roberto Sierra


This series of FREE, one-hour pops concerts held in the Bradley Pavilion of the Marcus Performing Arts Center, 929 N Water St, is geared towards children and their families.  Each concert has narration and music selections that are lively, tell a story, or demonstrate the colors of the orchestra.  The programs often feature guest artists such as local dancers, costumed actors, and children’s performing groups.  Sometimes audience members even get to conduct the orchestra!

Dress is casual, and there is both open floor seating in front of the orchestra and traditional seating in the rear of the hall.  Pajamas, teddy bears, and blankets are welcome!  Pajama Jamborees are best suited for children in K4 through fifth grade, but they are fun for young and not-so-young audience members alike!

Pajama Jamboree concerts begin at 7:00pm, and doors open at 6:30pm.  No tickets or reservations are required.

A Spooky Jamboree
Wednesday, October 25, 2023, 7:00pm
Put on your favorite costume and join Milwaukee’s Festival City Symphony for a mesmerizing concert that conjures the haunting melodies of the season. From thrilling themes of pops classics to whimsical tunes of magic and mischief, this spooky spectacular will ignite your imagination. Experience a symphonic journey that embraces the eerie, the mysterious, and the magical. Don’t miss this bewitching concert that promises tricks, treats, and orchestral delights!

Holiday Songs & Dances
Wednesday, December 6, 2023, 7:00pm 
Gather your family, friends and the neighbor kids for what many consider an annual tradition; The Festival City Symphony Holiday Pajama Jamboree! This year will feature old standards and traditional favorites that highlight the sounds of the winter season. This hour-long, kid-friendly performance will include Leroy Anderson’s Sleigh Ride, Lucas Richman’s Hanukkah Festival Overture and end with Anderson’s A Christmas Festival sing-along. Tis the season to be jolly! FCS encourages attendees to bring a nonperishable food donation for Milwaukee’s Hunger Task Force.

Spring Barn Dance
Wednesday, May 1, 2024, 7:00pm
Festival City Symphony’s Spring Pajama Jamboree will be an hour-long exploration of pops favorites for classical music fans of all ages. Put on your pajamas and bring your blankets for a concert that will include James Weldon Johnson’s “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and, as always, conclude with a rousing rendition of John Philip Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever” featuring audience members conducting the orchestra!

Festival City Symphony

Contact us if you have questions about the concert schedule or need help ordering tickets for the Saturday Classics.

As always, the safety and well-being of our patrons, musicians, and staff remain our top priority. We will closely monitor the guidance from the CDC and follow all recommended guidelines to ensure a safe and enjoyable environment for all attendees.

Stay tuned for more updates, detailed concert schedules, and additional surprises. Thank you for your unwavering support – it’s what fuels our dedication to delivering accessible classical music experiences for audiences of all ages.