Close Encounters of the Third Kind

The New York Philharmonic

Update Browser

Pages don't look right?

You are using a browser that does not support the technology used on our website.

Please select a different browser or use your phone or tablet to access our site.

Download: Firefox | Chrome | Safari

If you're using Internet Explorer, please update to the latest version.


Become a 2019–20 subscriber when you purchase 4 or more eligible concerts and enjoy exclusive benefits, including unlimited no-fee ticket exchanges.


The Art of the Score

Close Encounters of the Third Kind in Concert


David Geffen Hall

Price Range



2 hours & 45 minutes with intermission

Date & Times


Sep, 2019

Wednesday, 7:30 PM


Sep, 2019

Thursday, 7:30 PM

Event Info

This concert is a Special Event of the 2019–20 season.

Experience John Williams’s score performed live by the New York Philharmonic to Steven Spielberg’s out-of-this-world film.

Program To Include

John Williams

Close Encounters of the Third Kind (New York Premiere–score performed live to complete film)


Richard Kaufman


Richard Kaufman


Richard Kaufman


Richard Kaufman has devoted much of his musical life to conducting and supervising music for film and television productions, as well as performing film and classical music in concert halls and on recordings. The 2018–19 season marks his 13th with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s CSO at the Movies series and his 28th as principal pops conductor of the Pacific Symphony. He holds the permanent title of pops conductor laureate with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

Upcoming engagements include Mr. Kaufman’s debuts with the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and returns to the Detroit and Hawaii Symphony Orchestras, The Cleveland Orchestra, and Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Recent highlights include debuts with the New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, Iceland Symphony Orchestra, and Handel and Haydn Society.

In 2015 Mr. Kaufman made his conducting debut with the Boston Pops Orchestra, substituting for John Williams, who invited him to share the podium at the annual Tanglewood Film Night in 2016. In July 2016, two days before its official theatrical release, he conducted the San Diego Symphony in a live performance of Michael Giacchino’s new score for Star Trek Beyond, accompanying the film in its gala world premiere in IMAX.

One of the world’s leading conductors of film music, Mr. Kaufman regularly appears with the Cleveland, San Francisco, Atlanta, St. Louis, London, Liverpool, Dublin, Indianapolis, and San Diego symphony orchestras and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. He is often asked to conduct such legendary film titles as Singin’ in the Rain, The Wizard of Oz, Psycho, Vertigo, North by Northwest, Casablanca, The Bride of Frankenstein, Jaws, Pirates of the Caribbean, Silverado, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Amadeus, and Star Trek.

Richard Kaufman received the 1993 Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance. He supervised music for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios for 18 years, receiving two Emmy nominations.

Learn more about Richard Kaufman

Musica Sacra
Kent Tritle, director


Musica Sacra
Kent Tritle, director



Musica Sacra, the longest continuously performing professional chorus in New York City, was founded in 1964 by Richard Westenburg and is now under the artistic leadership of Kent Tritle, who begins his 12th season in 2018. Musica Sacra presents performances each year at venues throughout New York, including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts; its annual performances of Handel’s Messiah at Carnegie Hall are a New York holiday tradition.

The chorus is frequently invited to appear with ensembles such as Orchestra of St. Luke’s, at the New York City Ballet, in the Mostly Mozart Festival, and by concert presenters throughout the region.

The chorus has given World and New York Premieres of more than 25 choral works, including, most recently, the World Premiere of Evan Fein’s oratorio Deborah, based on the Biblical character from the Book of Judges, at Alice Tully Hall. The group’s most recent recording is Eternal Reflections, an album of vocal works by Robert Paterson, the award-winning composer and founder of the American Modern Ensemble. Its growing discography on the BMG, RCA, MSR Classics, and Deutsche Grammophon labels includes Messages to Myself, a program of recent works by Daniel Brewbaker, Michael Gilbertson, Zachary Patten, Behzad Ranjbaran, and Christopher Theofanidis.

Musica Sacra’s community engagement initiative, in partnership with schools and social service organization in the New York metropolitan area, reflects its dedication to educating students in the appreciation and history of choral music. In addition, Musica Sacra presents informational sessions for adult audiences to help contextualize their concert experience. Musica Sacra made its New York Philharmonic debut in the live to film presentation of 2001: A Space Odyssey in September 2013, and most recently appeared with the Orchestra in the New York Premiere screening of Amadeus: Live in April 2018.

Kent Tritle is one of America’s leading choral conductors. In addition to leading Musica Sacra, he is director of cathedral music and organist at The Cathedral of Saint John the Divine, music director of the Oratorio Society of New York, director of choral activities at the Manhattan School of Music, and a member of the graduate faculty of The Juilliard School. Also an acclaimed organ virtuoso, he is the organist of the New York Philharmonic and the American Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Tritle’s 2018–19 season is marked by the expansion of the Oratorio Society’s Carnegie Hall season from three to four concerts, which will include Kullervo, Sibelius’s rarely performed symphonic poem, and Szymanowski’s Stabat Mater. From 1989 to 2011 he conducted the Sacred Music in a Sacred Space series at the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola, and from 1996 to 2004 he was music director of the Emmy-nominated Dessoff Choirs. He hosted The Choral Mix with Kent Tritle, a weekly program devoted to the vibrant world of choral music, on WQXR from 2010 to 2014.

Learn more about Musica Sacra
Kent Tritle, director


Purchase 3 or more eligible concerts & save.

About Create Your Own Series:

Pick three (or more) concerts and and enjoy exclusive Subscriber Benefits including unlimited free ticket exchange. Ideal for concertgoers who want the ultimate in flexibility and the benefits of being a subscriber.

Subscriber Benefits:

  • Free, easy ticket exchange (available online or by phone)
  • Save on subscription concerts all year long
  • Priority notice on special events

How it Works:

  1. Look for the Create Your Own Series icon CYO eligible icon next to a concert and add it to your cart.
  2. Simply follow the directions in the shopping cart and enter promo code CREATE3 at check out.
Go to top