Conductor Timothy Myers discusses his upcoming night with the Sacramento Philharmonic on April 6

Conductor Timothy Myers will lead the Sacramento Philharmonic on April 6. Photograph by Curtis Brown

By Eddie Jorgensen

The Sacramento Philharmonic is continuing to showcase some of the most able musicians that the area has to offer, and lately doing so at ticket prices that any tax bracket can probably afford.

For those looking for a perfect entry point into classical music, this weekend’s program couldn’t be more appropriate. 

Besides the fact that a world-class conductor is in town, one of the most appealing things for many about the Philharmonic’s upcoming performance is the acoustics of a newer venue and its particularly enticing lines of sight. Once considered a drab hall with an outdated sound system, the newly-improved SAFE Credit Union Performing Arts Center is now great for showcasing classical, opera and musical theatre gatherings.

“As part of the renovation, the Constellation Acoustic System, designed and manufactured by Meyer Sound, was installed in the SAFE Credit Union Performing Arts Center for acoustical enhancement of orchestral and choral performances,” noted Sid Garcia-Heberger, the venue’s manager. “The room is also outfitted with a Meyer line array for amplification of speaking engagements, comedy and music performances. Our board is a Yamaha CL5.”

We caught up with Timothy Myers, the guest conductor from Raleigh, North Carolina, while he was prepping for the April 6 show.

SN&R: What year did you start conducting and what were the pieces?

Timothy Myers: My professional career began in 2003 when I was completing graduate school and had the opportunity to make a professional debut in Boston, conducting Bernstein’s “Candide.” I’ve been very fortunate to maintain a career that encompasses a wide variety of both symphonic and operatic works.

SN&R: How long does it typically take for you to fully understand and grasp the cadence and feel for any given piece?

Myers: For me, length of preparation tends to depend on the size of the piece and how experienced I am with that specific composer or even that specific piece. My preference is to start pieces very early, sometimes over a year before I’ll conduct it, so that I can get the basic shape and sound in my head and let it “cook.” Then a few months before the engagement I can pick it back up and do much more detailed studying, and start to cement my knowledge of it and a developed interpretation … It’s always a treat to return to pieces, which is the case with Peer Gynt. Though I haven’t conducted it since 2006, it was definitely still cemented in my brain and came back to the forefront with some focused review.

SN&R: What is the biggest misconception about being a conductor and how integral the role is to a symphony?

Myers: As you might imagine, I often get the question “What does a conductor actually do?”A fuller answer would be lengthy and broad-ranging, but I typically sum it up as two of the most critical aspects of my my job are to give the musicians the information that they need to do their jobs well, and then show them something they don’t already know. The musicians of the Sacramento Philharmonic are very familiar with the music of Grieg and Beethoven and could play most of it without me. It’s my responsibility to give more of the ‘how’ of the music-making, so that the result is much greater than the sum of the parts.

See and hear the Sacramento Philharmonic perform Beethoven’s 2nd Symphony along with Grieg’s ‘Peer Gynt Suite No. 1’ and Carlos Simon’s ‘Fate Now Conquers’ at SAFE Credit Union Performing Arts Center located at 1301 L Street in Sacramento on Saturday, April. Doors at 6:30pm and show to follow at 7:30 p.m. Tickets start at $21 while premium seats are $81 and can be purchased at

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