Utah Symphony touring state’s outdoor wonders, including Bryce Canyon

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Courtesy of Utah Symphony

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UTAH (ABC4) – The natural wonder and beauty of the outdoors in Utah can be so vast and enchanting, it might seem like only one thing could improve the scene: a classic music score playing in the background.

Beginning this week, the landscape will be complete and filled with the sounds of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and even John Williams’ iconic Star Wars theme as the Utah Symphony hits the road for the Forever Mighty Tour this week.

Beginning on Tuesday night, the symphony will make stops around the state, performing outdoor concerts using some of the Beehive State’s most picturesque stops as its stage. The tour will kick off in Northern Utah near the Wellsville Mountains in Cache Valley, and proceed to head south with daily stops following in Helper, Bryce Canyon, Kanab, and Hurricane.

The concert set for Bryce Canyon on August 12 is expected to be especially awe-inspiring.

Having been on a previous trip to Bryce Canyon a few years ago, Jonathan Miles, the symphony’s Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations, tells ABC4 that “the pairing between the music and the nature is an unforgettable experience.”

“It is such an incredible place to experience a concert,” Miles shares. “The orchestra and the audience are literally sitting on the rim of the canyon looking down in into Bryce. You’re all in that landscape, on the edge of the canyon, looking out and hearing the orchestra perform Beethoven and Tchaikovsky, all these great pieces of music.”

The show overlooking the hoodoos and red rocks will be held at the longstanding Ruby’s Inn, a favorite stop for visitors in Southern Utah for 105 years. Lance Syrett, the hotel’s General Manager who was also in attendance the last time the symphony stopped by the canyon, also shares that the sound and production the group brings to the remarkably unique landscape is equally memorable.

“It’s a very rare thing to be able to do something like this,” he explains. “The venue is actually on private property which overlooks Bryce Canyon National Park, so that offers a little bit flexibility as far as putting on a concert with permitting, and things like that. It’s right on the rim of the canyon and it’s a great place to have a concert.”

Utah Office of Tourism Public Relations Manager Anna Loughridge believes that attending the concert at Bryce Canyon, one of the state’s most uniquely beautiful National Parks, could be the ideal jumping-off point for a great three-day weekend. Although visitation at national and state parks saw record highs as Americans took to the road, Bryce Canyon National Park’s visitation has decelerated through the summer.

“Attending the Utah Symphony at Bryce Canyon is the perfect way to kick off a long weekend surrounded by hoodoos, connecting with the landscape and the community in a thoughtful, immersive way,” she says, giving her recommendation. “Now is the time to book a room and explore Bryce Canyon country with the pent-up demand for travel softening out in the area.”

Loughridge also suggests that visitors in the area take advantage of the other activities available at Bryce Canyon, such as hiking, horseback riding, and ATV tours, if they wish to extend their visit after the two-hour-long show wraps on Thursday evening.

Although this whole potentially magical experience sounds like it may have a catch, none have been found leading up to the show. While Miles tells ABC4.com that the free tickets have been sold out online, the symphony will have a stand-by waiting area and is confident that everyone will be able to get in to enjoy the sights and sounds.

Even though getting the 84-player orchestra around on a 500-mile trip within a week will be a logistical challenge, complete with a caravan of buses, cars, trucks, and a semi-truck, Miles is expecting it to be a fantastic experience for all.

“We’ve been really looking forward to this year, to this tour, for a couple of years,” he says. “We were supposed to last summer and couldn’t. It’s been something we’ve been anticipating and excited about and there’s a couple of communities that are new that we haven’t toured to before, so bringing the orchestra and having these concerts outside in these really spectacular settings is something exciting.”

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