Heavy metal’s biggest band, Metallica, is coming home to The Bay to join forces with the San Francisco Symphony in Chase Center’s debut performance this fall.
“Black tie will meet black leather as the San Francisco Symphony joins Metallica on Sept. 6 to break in the new home of the Golden State Warriors in Mission Bay,” writes the San Francisco Chronicle’s Aidin Vaziri, as the burning question of Chase Center’s opening act is finally answered in a unique performance special to the Bay Area.
Metallica has extended the second set of dates for their WorldWired North American tour, following last summer’s hugely successful stadium run, where the metal legends galvanized crowds and set attendance records at venues all across the country. On the tour, the band has performed an electrifying setlist from their 2016 album, Hardwired… to Self-Destruct, where the heavy-metal musicians prove that timeless music lives on.
However, this won’t just be another stop on their tour. Metallica will be joined by the San Francisco Symphony for a special, inaugural performance at Chase Center that celebrates the 20th anniversary of their Grammy Award-Winning “Symphony and Metallica” (S&M) album. Originally recorded in the Bay Area, at The Berkeley Community Theatre in April 1999, the S&M live album features the two musical forces colliding in groundbreaking, harmonious renditions. Since the album’s release, S&M has been certified 5x Platinum and has sold millions of copies worldwide, with the eclectic assemblage appealing to fans globally.
Now, 20 years after the album’s release, the two musical forces will collaborate once again for an unforgettable inaugural performance at Chase Center, combining thrash metal greatness with spirited symphonic sounds. September’s one-of-a-kind show will revisit original arrangements composed and conducted by the late Michael Kamen, as well as debut first-ever collaborative renditions of songs written and released since the original S&M album. Moreover, San Francisco Symphony’s Michael Tilson Thomas will return to the podium for the commencement of his 25th and final season as the music director for the San Francisco Symphony, conducting a portion of the show alongside Edwin Outwater. Thomas shared, “I'm happy to join with my friends in Metallica to make this an extraordinary only-in-San Francisco music event.”
Since performing its first selections in 1911, the San Francisco Symphony has gained international recognition for setting the highest possible standard for excellence in musical performance. Under the visionary leadership of Michael Tilson Thomas, who joined the group as music director in 1995, the orchestra has reached revolutionary artistic heights; winning 11 Grammys — including three for the 1999 recording of Stravinsky ballet scores and seven for the acclaimed Mahler symphony cycle recorded over the last decade — and further transforming the cultural landscape. The San Francisco Symphony continues to push conventional confines by reconditioning classical music to take new forms, as their upcoming collaboration with Metallica furthers their artistic expansion for a special, mystical musical ride.
During Chase Center’s Reveal Week Press Conference, an event held to launch the arena’s first week of event announcements, Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich stated, “This is beyond exciting on so many fronts. The fact that San Francisco is finally getting a much needed world-class arena, the fact that Metallica get to be part of the opening celebration, the fact that we get to revisit S&M 20 years later, and the fact that we get to share the stage not only with the San Francisco Symphony once again, but with the legend himself, MTT [Michael Tilson Thomas], as he kicks off his final year as music director here in San Francisco. This is mind-blowingly awesome... bring it on ASAP!!!” Guitarist James Hetfield also added, “It’s a beautiful opportunity. We’re super proud that after 38 years there’s still cool things on the horizon for us.”
It’s clear the heavy metal band is ready to rock the stage at Chase Center, with fans eager for the chance to see what the diverse acts have in store for this historic performance. Few bodies of work have been able to withstand the test of time the way Metallica and The San Francisco Symphony’s original S&M album has; with September’s S&M 2 concert uniting the two musical forces in the inaugural performance at Chase Center.
Though Chase Center’s first public concert is one month away, have a listen to some of the original songs featured on the S&M live album, further exploring the fascinating juxtaposition of symphonic sounds and heavy metal roots by clicking here.