Symphony Under the Stars celebrates icons

Helena Symphony pays homage to Billy Joel & Elton John with giant outdoor concert

On Stage

The 18th annual Symphony Under the Stars, considered the largest summer event in Montana, returns to the campus of Carroll College July 16 to celebrate the music of iconic performers Billy Joel and Elton John.

Symphony Under the Stars: It's a family affair!
Symphony Under the Stars: It’s a family affair!Photo © Galen McAllister

The Helena Symphony continues its collaboration Carroll College and its major sponsor Intrepid Credit Union, continuing a multi-year commitment to the event. The concert begins at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 16, and includes a fireworks finale, also sponsored by the Intrepid Credit Union. The much-anticipated concert attracts more than 18,000 people from all over the state of Montana and beyond.

This year’s theme is The Music of Billy Joel & Elton John, with guest artists from the U.S. and Canada joining the orchestra in performances of such time-honored tunes as “Piano Man,” “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting),” “Your Song,” and “Scenes From An Italian Restaurant.”

Billy Joel and Elton John remain two of the most accomplished and impactful musicians of all time. Combined they’ve been awarded one Emmy, two Golden Globes, two Tony Awards, and 10 Grammy Awards.

Greg Strizich, CEO of Intrepid Credit Union, notes that his organization is “dedicated to amplifying community engagement and fostering new opportunities for our neighbors,” and views Intrepid’s sponsorship of the event as an important part of that mission.

“Each year, the Intrepid Credit Union Symphony Under the Stars showcases the incredible talent we have in Helena and provides access to symphonic art to thousands within our community,” he says. “We are thrilled to be a principal sponsor for this exceptional Helena tradition.”

Likewise, Carroll College is a key partner in the event. “We look forward to partnering with the Helena Symphony and Intrepid Credit Union in welcoming our friends and neighbors from near and far for an evening celebrating community and good music,” said college president Dr. John Cech.

The Carroll College Guadalupe Hill is closed to the public until 5 p.m. Friday, July 15, at which time concertgoers may drop off lawn chairs and blankets. Early blanket placement is allowed from 3:00-5:00 p.m. on Friday with a $5/blanket cash donation to the Boy Scouts, who will be on site providing security. Organizers recommend that those planning to attend from outside of the Helena area should make arrangements with friends/family to claim their spots on Friday. Pets, plastic tarps, paint, rocks or stakes are strictly prohibited on the lawn at all times.

Concertgoers are encouraged to bring non-perishable or canned goods to hold down blankets, and then donate the canned goods to the Helena Food Share. Last year, almost 20,000 pounds of food were collected in drop boxes during one of the largest single-day food collections for the organization.

For more details regarding seating, parking and other production information visit the Symphony Under the Stars Facebook page and website.