By Dale Gedcke
Don’t miss the majestic “Symphony No. 3 with Organ” by Saint-Saëns, performed by the Oak Ridge Community Orchestra at 2 p.m. Saturday May 17, in the sanctuary of the First Baptist Church. This is probably the most impressive symphony that one can find. It is unique because of the dominant role played by the organ, especially in the finale, where it builds the foundation for a glorious finish.
Camille Saint-Saëns (1835 – 1921) composed his third symphony at the pinnacle of his career when he was in his early 50s. The story of his life is as remarkable as the content of this symphony. Trained on the piano from a very early age, his first public performance came at the age of five, when he accompanied a Beethoven violin sonata. At 10, he played his first public recital, featuring works by Handel, Kalkbrenner, Hummel, and Bach. As an encore, Saint-Saëns offered to play any of Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas from memory. [Read more…]