There will be 12 featured musicians performing with the full orchestra during a free concert of the Oak Ridge Philharmonia on Saturday, November 18.
Danny Brian will be the soloist for the unforgettable “Piano Concerto No. 1” by Franz Liszt, a press release said. Concertmaster Margaret Moore has selected Beethoven’s “Fifth Violin Sonata” for her performance. The lively first movement of “Concerto for Flute, Oboe, and Bassoon” by Antonio Vivaldi will be presented by Barbara Sparks, Cyndi Jeffers, and Cora Nappo. Kimberly Simpkins, Belle James, and Kathryn York will tangle with the “Tango, Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas” by Ástor Piazzolla,” the press release said. To add a Mexican flavor, Greg Foertter, Ward Bigler, and Dale Gedcke will play the “Chiapanecas Trumpet Trio,” as arranged by Raphael Méndez. In addition to conducting the piano concerto, and accompanying the violin and trumpet soloists on piano, Marcelo Urias will direct the orchestra in a colorful symphonic poem, “Les Préludes,” by Franz Liszt.
Franz Liszt (1811-1886) was a child prodigy, who leveraged his musical skills into great wealth by playing piano concerts throughout Europe during most of his life. He was also a well-developed composer, the press release said. Although most of the themes were created before the age of 19, it was a long 26 years of revisions before he finally completed the “Piano Concerto No. 1” to his satisfaction. The result was an impressive composition, with which pianists can enchant their audiences, just as Liszt did, the press release said. It incorporates some dramatic themes, which will cycle through your memory for weeks thereafter, the release said. Danny Brian, a familiar performer with the ORPH, brings a vibrant enjoyment to this piano concerto, the press release said.
Liszt also composed “Les Préludes (Love Storm and Victory)” and thereby established a new category, the symphonic poem, when it premiered in 1854, the release said. That label aptly describes the nature of the composition.
“The music captures the essence of the three scenarios, with intense feelings,” the press release said. “After the orchestra finishes this piece, you may find yourself humming some of the melodies for the next week.”
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) was a prolific composer of symphonies, concertos, sonatas, and string quartets. His “‘Spring’ Violin Sonata No. 5,” first published in 1801, is a favorite among violinists, the press release said. It was unconventional, because it used four, instead of three movements, with a brief scherzo inserted for the third movement. Except for the slow and expressive second movement, the sonata is filled with rapid motion that complements the piano as much as the violin. This composition features violinist Margaret Moore and pianist Marcelo Urias.
Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741) was a Baroque composer from Venice, who was mostly forgotten after his death. It was not until the 20th Century that his voluminous repertoire was rediscovered and popularized, the press release said. He contributed more than 1,000 compositions in concerti, sonatas, and operas. Except for his operas, it is difficult to find any background information surrounding each particular composition. However, Vivaldi tended to compose in a lively and exuberant style. He was a master at developing complex variations on a theme, such that the listener perceives something new in the music every four to eight bars. The “Allegro mà cantabile” movement of “Concerto RV103” demonstrates those Vivaldi characteristics. It is played by Barbara Sparks (flute), Cyndi Jeffers (oboe), and Cora Nappo (bassoon).
Ástor Piazzolla (1921-1992) was born in Argentina of Italian immigrant parents. From 1925 to 1936, he and his family lived in Greenwich Village, New York, where he was exposed to baroque, classical, and jazz styles, along with his father’s recordings of tango orchestras. He and his family returned to Argentina in 1936, and that was the launching of his career playing in Tango Orchestras and composing, the press release said. Early on, it became evident that his special skill was in composing with the tango style. Typically, he incorporated the baroque, classical, and jazz idioms, but the final composition was always recognizable as a tango. His style defined the nuevo tango (the new tango). The “Four Seasons of Buenos Aires (Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas)” was originally written and performed as four dissociated compositions from 1965 to 1970. The Kibeka Trio, with Kimberly Simpkins (violin), Belle James (piano), and Kathryn York (cello), will dazzle you with the “Autumn” and “Spring” movements, the press release said.
Raphael Méndez (1906-1981) was born in Mexico, and struggled to build his career in music after moving to the United States in 1926, the press release said. His fame as trumpeter extraordinaire grew through his intense success in Los Angeles during the 1940s and 1950s, and his voluminous concert tours, the press release said. Although he was skilled in all styles of music, he had a favorite connection to the Mexican music of his childhood. “Chiapanecas” is based on a folk song from the southern Chiapas Province of Mexico. The folk song is often used to accompany women dancing in colorful costumes during festivals, the press release said. Although Raphael sometimes performed this piece as a solo, it is best known as a trumpet trio, with his twin sons joining him. The trio is performed by Greg Foertter, Ward Bigler, and Dale Gedcke.
To thoroughly enjoy these engaging compositions, join the Oak Ridge Philharmonia on Saturday, November 18, at 2 p.m., in the sanctuary of the First Baptist Church of Oak Ridge, the press release said. The church is located at the corner of The Oak Ridge Turnpike and LaFayette Drive. Admission is free, although the orchestra appreciates modest donations at the door to support routine operating expenses. Free refreshments following the concert are provided by the orchestra members.
The Oak Ridge Philharmonia is a 501(c)3, nonprofit, volunteer organization, performing under the baton of Conductor and Music Director Marcelo Urias. Anyone wishing to regularly participate in the orchestra is encouraged to contact the Personnel Manager Cyndi Jeffers at [email protected].
“Usually, we can accommodate additional string players, and occasionally there are openings in the brass, woodwind, and percussion sections,” the press release said. “The orchestra welcomes proficient musicians of all ages.”
The Oak Ridge Philharmonia is a rewarding venue for instrumentalists who enjoy playing for an appreciative audience, with music ranging from baroque through classical to contemporary. For more information about the orchestra, visit www.OakRidgePhilharmonia.org. They can also be found on Facebook: @oakridgephil.
This press release was submitted by Dale Gedcke, publicity manager for Oak Ridge Philharmonia.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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