PHILADELPHIA, PA, December 08, 2012 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Highlighting the compositions of four American composers, the abiding spirit of our nation resonates in The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia's American Masters program on December 16 and December 17.
A founding resident company of The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, the Chamber Orchestra's program features its own Principal Trumpet Rodney Mack and Principal Oboe Geoffrey Deemer, who will perform on english horn, as soloists.
The December 16 2:30 p.m. and December 17 7:30 p.m. concerts will be performed in the Kimmel Center's intimate Perelman Theater. Tickets for Chamber Orchestra performances are $24 to $81. The Sunday matinee performance will be followed by "Classical Conversations," a brief question-and-answer session with Maestro Brosse, Mr. Mack and Mr. Deemer.
Samuel Barber - Serenade, Op. 1
West Chester, Pennsylvania-born composer Samuel Barber lived in Philadelphia for several years, studying at the Curtis Institute of Music as part of its inaugural class in 1924. About four years later, Barber composed his eloquent and exhilarating Serenade, Op. 1. The rhythmic design suggests Copland's familiarity with the style of Johannes Brahms, but the harmonic language is all his own.
John Williams - Essay for Strings
Oscar-award winning composer John Williams is best known for his dozens of movie scores, like Jaws and Star Wars. Lesser known is that he was the successor to Arthur Fiedler, conducting the Boston Pops for fifteen years, and also composes concert music, honing skills from his studies at The Juilliard School. One of Williams' successful concert works includes his Essay for Strings. Through his rhythmic changes, and complex harmonic language, he distinguishes himself as someone other than just a film composer.
Aaron Copland - Quiet City
Aaron Copland's music exemplifies unmistakable American traits - a feeling of bareness, clarity, physical verve, and a new perception of man's place against the background of nature. Copland composed Quiet City for the New York Group Theatre's production of Irwin Shaw's play of the same name. Copland's intention was to convey "the nostalgia and inner distress of a society profoundly aware of its own insecurity," in a play he described as being "about a young trumpet player who imagined the night thoughts of many different people in a great city and played trumpet to express his emotions."
George Gershwin - Lullaby
George Gershwin is one of the first composers known to bridge the gap between the "popular" and "serious" spheres in music, helping to establish the musical comedy as a quintessentially American genre. The delicate and charming Lullaby is among his few instrumental compositions, and was originally written for string quartet.
Aaron Copland - Appalachian Spring (Ballet for Martha): Suite
Copland's Appalachian Spring suite gravitates around the famous Shaker hymn, Simple Gifts. The ballet - awarded the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for Music - was about an early 19th century pioneer celebration in the hills of Pennsylvania. It was dedicated to celebrated ballerina Martha Graham and was first performed on October 30, 1944 by Miss Graham and her company in the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.
Principal Trumpet Rodney Mack's studies began with his cousin, Wynton Marsalis, at the age of eleven, and continued with the guidance of world renowned conductors like Leonard Bernstein, Michael Tilson Thomas, and John Williams. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, Mr. Mack has performed as a soloist with orchestras throughout the United States and Europe, and made several world premiere recordings. Mr. Mack also performs an abundance of concerts each year with The Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass, and is also an Artist in Residence at Temple University, as well as Visiting Professor at Princeton University.
Principal Oboe Geoffrey Deemer has been described by The Philadelphia Inquirer as "bold" and "detailed." He received his early training at the Longy School of Music and the New England Conservatory of Music. In 2001, he graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music, where he studied with Richard Woodhams. He has been Principal Oboe of the Chamber Orchestra since 2002, was appointed Principal Oboe of the Opera Company of Philadelphia in 2009, is Principal Oboe of the Academy of Vocal Arts orchestra, and is a core member of the chamber ensemble Dolce Suono.
Friday Conversations at the Philadelphia Art Alliance will take place on December 14 at 6:30 PM with Music Director Dirk Brosse and Principal Trumpet Rodney Mack. Guests will have the opportunity to chat and mingle with them over complimentary wine and hors d'oeuvres. Entry is $5, or free to Chamber Orchestra subscribers and Art Alliance members. Friday Conversations is also broadcast live on brandywineradio.com. The Philadelphia Art Alliance is located at 251 South 18th Street, Philadelphia. For information, call 215.545.4302 or visit philartalliance.org.
The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia
Sunday, December 16, 2012 at 2:30 PM
Monday, December 17, 2012 at 7:30 PM
Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts' Perelman Theater
Dirk Brosse, conductor
Rodney Mack, trumpet | Geoffrey Deemer, english horn
Barber - Serenade, Op. 1
John Williams - Essay for Strings
Copland - Quiet City
Gershwin - Lullaby
Copland - Appalachian Spring (Ballet for Martha): Suite
$24 - $81
215.893.1709 or www.chamberorchestra.org
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