A collective musical celebration of the people who are essential in our lives.

Sign up for the Oregon Symphony newsletter for the latest news and content.

Sign Up Now 

Watch Season Finale Preview

Episode 1 | Healthcare Workers

Watch Now

Episode 2 | Food Service Workers

Watch Now

Episode 3 | Social Services

Watch Now

Episode 4 | Medical Research

Watch Now

Episode 5 | Educators

Watch Now

Over the past several months, we’ve seen people come together in awe-inspiring ways in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Right now, doctors, nurses, and healthcare workers are spending 12+ hour shifts treating critically ill coronavirus patients in hospitals across the country. Grocery store and food bank workers risk exposure every day, ensuring that food is available to those impacted most by the pandemic. How can we even begin to express our feelings of gratitude?

When words fail, music often steps in. During challenging times throughout history, music has helped us process our deep-seated feelings, and cope with the extraordinary circumstances we face individually, as families, and as a society. Now is no different.

Join us for each episode as we put the spotlight on a specific group of people who are holding our community together during this time of crisis. Over the course of this free, six-part series created by Oregon Symphony Creative Chair Gabriel Kahane and director Holcombe Waller, you will experience dozens of heartfelt musical performances, each accompanied by stirring imagery inspired by the stories of essential workers in a particular sector. You will hear stories like that of an Oregon Symphony percussionist, whose cousin went from frontline healthcare worker to COVID patient – and his musical dedication to her.

Special guests such as Portland-based songwriters Storm Large and Amenta Abioto will also be featured, sharing their unique musical voices, and letting us know how we can make a difference in the lives of those whose work is highlighted in each episode. And recurring segments like “Composers in Quarantine Making Dinner” will give a fascinating glimpse into the lives of composers like Jessie Montgomery and Missy Mazzoli, as they discuss how they are creating art during a global pandemic.

By the end of the season, we hope you’ll walk away with a renewed appreciation for the tireless contributions of essential workers, as well an understanding of the unique role music can play in expressing gratitude and providing comfort during times like these. Join us as we play tribute to the essential people in our lives, perform some beautiful music, and share in communal gratitude.