Firebird Suite headlines ASO Masterworks Concert this weekend

ASO firebirdThe Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, Philip Mann, Music Director and Conductor, presents the first 2016 concert of the Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks Series: Firebird Suite, 7:30 PM Saturday, January 30 and 3:00 PM Sunday, January 31, 2016, at the Maumelle Performing Arts Center.

Under the baton of music director Philip Mann, the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra will perform Rossini’s La gazza ladra: Overture, Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64 – featuring ASO co-concertmaster Kiril Laskarov, Visconti’s Black Bend and Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite. The Masterworks Series is sponsored by the Stella Boyle Smith Trust.

Concert Conversations – All concert ticket holders are invited to a pre-concert lecture an hour before each Masterworks concert. These talks feature insights from the Maestro and guest artists, and feature musical examples to enrich the concert experience.

Tickets are $19, $35, $49, and $58; active duty military and student tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at www.ArkansasSymphony.org; at the Maumelle Performing Arts Center box office beginning 90 minutes prior to a concert; or by phone at 501-666-1761, ext. 100. All Arkansas students grades K-12 are admitted to Sunday’s matinee free of charge with the purchase of an adult ticket using the Entergy Kids’ Ticket, downloadable at the ASO website.

Kiril Laskarov, ASO Concertmaster for 17 years, steps to the front of the orchestra to perform Mendelssohn’s beloved Violin Concerto. The tradition of the concertmaster as a featured soloist with the orchestra is long and healthy, and the ASO is proud to present Mr. Laskarov with this work. Featured soloist Kiril Laskarov will perform the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto on this “golden period” Stradivarius violin. These instruments are world famous and highly sought-after for there unique sound and quality. “Le Brun” was notably played by the famed violin virtuoso Niccolò Paganini.

Composer Dan Visconti has spent the week in Little Rock for residency activities, including private lessons with high school students, presentations to classes, and speaking engagements.

About Arkansas Symphony Orchestra

The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra celebrates its 50th season in 2015-2016, under the leadership of Music Director Philip Mann. ASO is the resident orchestra of Robinson Center Music Hall, and performs more than sixty concerts each year for more than 165,000 people through its Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks Series, ACXIOM Pops LIVE! Series, River Rhapsodies Chamber Music Series, and numerous concerts performed around the state of Arkansas, in addition to serving central Arkansas through numerous community outreach programs and bringing live symphonic music education to over 26,000 school children and over 200 schools.

Happy New Year – Sixteen “16”s for 2016

Here are sixteen images of various 16s from throughout Little Rock.

 

1616 Scott

The intersection of 16th and Scott Streets


1616 Bus route

Rock Region Metro route 16


1616 fox

KLRT Fox 16 tower in downtown


1616 Firebird

Sixteenth notes from FIREBIRD SUITE which will be played by the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra later this month.


1616 candles

Sixteen Candles movie is available for checkout from the Central Arkansas Library System


1616 june novel

The novel THE SIXTEENTH OF JUNE is available at Barnes & Noble


1616 Gas

Gas for $1.60 9/10 a gallon in Little Rock. (Yes, this is a slight cheat on the 16, but the 1 and 6 are still next to each other)


1616 Tons

Tennessee Ernie Ford’s LP “Sixteen Tons” available at music stores and in many homes in LR


1616 street

A street address which reverses the year – 1620 instead of 2016


1616 LRFD

Little Rock Fire Station Number 16 servicing Walton Heights and parts of Pleasant Valley


A clock in the Culture Vulture's car

A clock in the Culture Vulture’s car


A detail from an Arkansas license plate

A detail from an Arkansas license plate


A 16th birthday card

A 16th birthday card


A grocery store aisle

A grocery store aisle


Roswell Beebe, Little Rock's 16th Mayor

Roswell Beebe, Little Rock’s 16th Mayor


Little Rock has the 16th square on the new Monopoly Here & Now Game. And rent is $160

Little Rock has the 16th square on the new Monopoly Here & Now Game. And rent is 160

Beethoven, Bernstein, Brahams, Borodin & Blue Jeans with the 2015-16 Arkansas Symphony Masterworks Season

Under the baton of Maestro Philip Mann, the 2015-2016 Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks series features a lineup with something old, something new, something borrowed and jeans that are blue.

The borrowed is the location. For the second of two seasons, the Maumelle Performing Arts Center will be the Masterworks home.

The new includes a World Premiere of D.J. Sparr’s Concerto for Jazz Guitar, which will feature Ted Ludwig.  Another new selection is Scott McAllister’s Black Dog which is based in hard rock.

Among the old friends returning are pieces by Grieg, Dvorák, Haydn, Mendelssohn, Borodin, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Rossini, Stravinsky, Brahms, Shostakovich and Bernstein.

The season kicks off with Grieg’s Piano Concerto on September 26 & 27. The guest artist that weekend is pianist Jon Kimura Parker.  The concert will include Mendelssohn’s The Hebrides, Op. 26 “Fingal’s Cave,” Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16 and Borodin’s Symphony No. 2 in B minor.

Next is Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 on October 17 & 18. Imre Palló will be the guest conductor, and Cicely Parnas, cello will be the featured artist. The program will include Kodály’s Dances of Galanta; Haydn’s Concerto for Cello in C Major;and Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88.

The annual Beethoven and Blue Jeans concert will be November 7 & 8 featuring guest artist Kelly Johnson, clarinet.  The lineup will feature Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8 in F Major, Op. 93; McAllister’s Black Dog; and Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake Suite, Op. 20a.

2016 will start with Firebird Suite and featured soloist Kiril Laskarov. On January 30 & 31 the program will include Rossini’s La gazza ladra: Overture; Mendelssohn’s Concerto for Violin, Visconti’s Black Bend and Stravinsky’s The Firebird Suite (1919).

February 27 & 28 the program is Bernstein and Brahams.  The concert will have Bernstein’s Chicester Psalms and the Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem. 

The 2015-2016 season will wrap up on April 9 & 10 with Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5. The concerts will include Bernstein’s Candide Overture; Sparr’s Concerto for Jazz Guitar and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 in D minor, Op. 47. 

Old, New, Borrowed, Blue (Jeans) in 2015-16 Arkansas Symphony Masterworks Series

Under the baton of Maestro Philip Mann, the 2015-2016 Arkansas Symphony Orchestra Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks series features a lineup with something old, something new, something borrowed and jeans that are blue.

The borrowed is the location. For the second of two seasons, the Maumelle Performing Arts Center will be the Masterworks home.

The new includes a World Premiere of D.J. Sparr’s Concerto for Jazz Guitar, which will feature Ted Ludwig.  Another new selection is Scott McAllister’s Black Dog which is based in hard rock.

Among the old friends returning are pieces by Grieg, Dvorák, Haydn, Mendelssohn, Borodin, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Rossini, Stravinsky, Brahms, Shostakovich and Bernstein.

The season kicks off with Grieg’s Piano Concerto on September 26 & 27. The guest artist that weekend is pianist Jon Kimura Parker.  The concert will include Mendelssohn’s The Hebrides, Op. 26 “Fingal’s Cave,” Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16 and Borodin’s Symphony No. 2 in B minor.

Next is Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 on October 17 & 18. Imre Palló will be the guest conductor, and Cicely Parnas, cello will be the featured artist. The program will include Kodály’s Dances of Galanta; Haydn’s Concerto for Cello in C Major; and Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88.

The annual Beethoven and Blue Jeans concert will be November 7 & 8 featuring guest artist Kelly Johnson, clarinet.  The lineup will feature Beethoven’s Symphony No. 8 in F Major, Op. 93; McAllister’s Black Dog; and Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake Suite, Op. 20a.

2016 will start with Firebird Suite and featured soloist Kiril Laskarov. On January 30 & 31 the program will include Rossini’s La gazza ladra: Overture; Mendelssohn’s Concerto for Violin, Visconti’s Black Bend and Stravinsky’s The Firebird Suite (1919).

February 27 & 28 the program is Bernstein and Brahams.  The concert will have Bernstein’s Chicester Psalms and the Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem. 

The 2015-2016 season will wrap up on April 9 & 10 with Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5. The concerts will include Bernstein’s Candide Overture; Sparr’s Concerto for Jazz Guitar and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 in D minor, Op. 47. 

Martina Filjak, piano with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra this weekend

ASO_2-colorThe Arkansas Symphony Orchestra will perform with charismatic pianist Martina Filjak, on Saturday, September 21 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday, September 22 at 3:00 p.m. at the Robinson Center Music Hall. This is kicks off the ASO’s 2013-2014 Stella Boyle Smith Masterworks Series.

The program includes Shostakovich’s Festive Overture; Op. 96; Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-Flat Minor, Op. 23 and Stravinksy’s Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring).

The ASO will be under the baton of Music Director Philip Mann.

One of the most exciting young artists to emerge in recent years, Martina Filjak is garnering international praise for her poetic passion and technical mastery at the keyboard as well as for her charismatic personality and magnetic stage presence. Her transition from prodigy to mature artist has been all the more remarkable against the backdrop of political maelstrom that defined her native Croatia during her childhood.

Martina’s unwavering hunger for music, nurtured by piano teacher parents, has been her lodestar. Civil strife or no, she graduated from the Zagreb Music Academy and subsequently from the Vienna Conservatory and the soloist’s class at Hannover’s Hochschule für Musik. She participated in masterclasses at the Como Piano Academy, where she was coached by Dmitri Bashkirov, Peter Frankl and Andreas Staier.

In 2009, Martina Filjak won first prize in the Cleveland International Piano Competition, following which she made concerto debuts at the Konzerthaus Berlin and Vienna’s Musikverein and her recital debut at New York’s Carnegie Hall/Zankel Hall (“Brilliant, sensitive and imaginative playing with resourcefulness of technique and naturalness of musicality. …A striking individuality …A pianist to watch” The New York Times). Prior to winning the Cleveland competition, she had been first prizewinner of the 2007 Viotti International Piano Competition in Italy and the 2008 Maria Canals International Piano Competition in Barcelona.

She loves to travel and speaks seven languages.