Our Story – Golden Gate Opus

In the Spring of 2011, the Marin Symphony Orchestra commissioned Rob Kapilow to create a symphony in honor of the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge.  When Rob brought on the sound effects artist, Fred Newman to collaborate with him (you may know Fred’s work from Prairie Home Companion), they took contemporary classical music to a whole new level.  They re-imagined sounds from the Bridge – fog horns, generators, the wind, birds and intermixed them with the traditional instruments of the Orchestra and human voices of the Chorus.  This new music also used some very untraditional instruments:  flip flops, drones and the rims of a couple of wine glasses to name just a few.

The symphony was called “Chrysopylae” (kris-sop’-i-lee) which is the Greek word for “Golden Passageway.” It was performed by a 200-person Marin Symphony/Choir to a sold out audience of over 2,000 people in 2012.

Golden Gate Opus, the 26-minute documentary, looks at how the music was created and performed with iconic images and sounds of the Golden Gate Bridge as a backdrop.