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Calgary Philharmonic presents Totally 80s as part of their Pops series

By Ramiro Bustamante Torres, March 8 2024—

The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra (CPO) will be performing this weekend one of their Pops series shows, Totally 80s. The show brings classics from the decade, such as Blondie, Phil Collins and George Michael to name a few. The show is on March 8 and 9, with an after-party on Saturday involving DJ Goodword. In an interview with the Gauntlet, Jason Stasiuk, the artistic operations manager, talked about the Pops series.

Alongside the CPO, guest singers Aaron Finley and Nicole Parker will be interpreting the 80s songs. Finley has a history playing on theatre, Broadway and previous shows revolving around the 80s and Parker also has an extensive background in theatre, TV and even some films. The guest conductor will be Stuart Chafetz, coming from the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. 

Stasiuk shared that for this event, it is very casual and concertgoers can attend even in jeans or tuxedos, and even the orchestra would be joining in switching their attire. 

“The orchestra is going to be having their best 80s wear and accessories on as well,” said Stasiuk. “You might see some neons.” 

For those attending the Saturday show, there will be a special after-party where guests can hear DJ Goodword playing until 11 p.m. and mingle. Stasiuck talked a bit more about the after-party on Saturday, along with the DJ playing, there will be featured cocktails rounding out the evening.

“[It’s] unique for us to have that extra something happening after the concert,” said Stasiuck.

Totally 80s is part of the Pops series of the CPO’s 2023–2024 season. The next two shows in the series are She’s Got Soul with Capathia Jenkins on April 5–6 and The Broadway/Hollywood Songbook on May 3–4. She’s Got Soul will have vocalist Jenkins exploring soul and R&B music while The Broadway/Hollywood Songbook will have Spot-On Entertainment belting out showtunes and movie favourites on stage with the CPO. 

“Capathia is one of my favourite singers that we get to work with and that’ll be a great show,” said Stasiuk.

Stasiuk mentioned that they aim to appeal to a broad audience and show the CPO transition between styles as there is something different on each weekend. He also teased that for future Pops series, he would like to expand into other genres such as EDM and Hip-Hop music as possibilities. 

“There’s a huge catalogue of style and music there that we can perform, but we don’t get the chance to,” said Stasiuk.

To find out more about the CPO’s 2023–2024 season and for tickets, visit their website here or check out their social media.

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