Chattanooga Now CSO concerts include Pops in the Park - Sept. 21-22

Chattanooga Now CSO concerts include Pops in the Park - Sept. 21-22

September 19th, 2013 by Lisa Denton in Chattnow Music

The Chattanooga Symphony & Opera will return to Wilder Tower for the first time since 2004 for a Pops in the Park concert marking the sesquicentennial of the Civil War.

Photo by Staff File Photo /Times Free Press.

Kayoko Dan is music director of the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera.

Kayoko Dan is music director of the Chattanooga...

Photo by Angela Lewis /Times Free Press.



• What: Concert by Chattanooga Symphony & Opera

• When: 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 21

• Where: Wilder Tower, Chickamauga-Vittatoe Road off U.S. 27 at Chickamauga Battlefield, Fort Oglethorpe

• Admission: Free

Saturday Program

Key: "The Star-Spangled Banner"

Morton Gould: "American Salute"

Sousa: "Liberty Bell"

Ungar: "Ashoken Farewell"

Copland: "Simple Gifts" from "Old American Songs"

Williams: "Hymn to the Fallen"

from "Saving Private Ryan"

Ringwald: "Battle Hymn of the Republic"

Lowden: "Armed Forces Salute"

Hayman/Hayman: "Sing Out America!"

Custer: "The American Frontier"

Tchaikovsky: "Overture 1812"

Sousa: "Stars and Stripes Forever"


• What: CSO's Volkswagen Series concert

• When: 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22

• Where: VW Conference Center, 7351 Volkswagen Drive

• Admission: $25

• Phone: 423-267-8534

• Website:

Sunday Program

Key: "The Star-Spangled Banner"

Gould: "American Salute"

Sousa: "Liberty Bell"

Copland: "Simple Gifts" from "Old American Songs"

Rodgers: Selections from "The Sound of Music"

Custer: "The American Frontier"

Williams: "Imperial March" from "Star Wars"

Williams: "Hymn to the Fallen" from "Saving Private Ryan"

Mancini: Theme from "The Pink Panther"

Horner: Music from "Apollo 13"

Williams: "ET: Adventures on Earth"

The Chattanooga Symphony & Opera won't officially open the 2013-14 season until a Sept. 26 Masterworks concert at the Tivoli Theatre. But two performances this weekend will preview the players and their musical proficiency as they go off-site for two concerts, including a long-awaited return to Chickamauga Battlefield.

The back-to-back performances start with Pops in the Park at Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park on Saturday, Sept. 21, and end with "An American Salute" at the VW Conference Center on Sunday, Sept. 22. CSO Music Director Kayoko Dan will conduct both concerts.


Before Pops on the River debuted at Coolidge Park in July 2000, there was Pops in the Park at the battlefield. The series was begun in 1975 and at one time featured three concerts per year (at Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day).

Increasing costs halted the series in the summer of 2000, though there would be two smaller revivals featuring the CSO in 2003 and 2004, newspaper archives show.

Pops on the River, or Downtown Pops, as it was originally called, would offer a similar experience of picnics and patriotic music. But traditionalists have remained nostalgic for CSO concerts at the base of the battlefield's 85-foot-tall Wilder Tower, says Patrice Glass of Friends of the Park, the nonprofit support group for the nation's first and largest national military park.

"The thing we hear most often is about how much they enjoyed that tradition of going on the battlefield and hearing the patriotic music," she says.

Although battle re-enactments cannot be held at the park, the Friends group is presenting an array of educational programs and monument rededications to mark the sesquicentennial of the Civil War. Pops in the Park should have even broader appeal, according to Glass.

"This is for those not necessarily interested in military history but still appreciate the history of this great national park," she says.

Visitors are invited to bring blankets, camp chairs, picnic baskets "and a taste for stirring American music." To keep the park clean, participants are asked to carry out what they carry in.

Parking will be available in the Recreation Field and other fields surrounding the monument. In case of rain, the concert will be canceled.


The CSO's Sunday concert, which kicks off the Volkswagen Series, will open with several selections from the patriotic concert the night before, such as Sousa's "Liberty Bell" and Copland's "Simple Gifts" from "Old American Songs." The second half will feature music from classic American movies, including "Star Wars," "The Pink Panther" and "Apollo 13."

Contact Lisa Denton at or 423-757-6281.