Lake Geneva Symphony opens season
LAKE GENEVA -- The Lake Geneva Symphony Orchestra opens its 13th season, “Horizons,” with a 7:30 p.m. concert on Saturday, Nov. 16, at Calvary Community Church in Williams Bay. The concert features Wagner's “Overture to Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg,” Ravel's “Mother Goose Suite” and Respighi's “Pines of Rome.”
The LGSO's 2013 Young Artist Competition winner, Anna Stenzel, will be the soloist with the orchestra in the first movement of Haydn's “G Major Violin Concerto.”
Stenzel is a ninth-grade student from Holiday Hills, Ill., and is “a budding violin virtuoso,” said LGSO Music Director David Anderson. Her performance took the top honor in auditions open to high school music students who live within 35 miles of Lake Geneva. It also earned her the 2013 Rotary Club of Lake Geneva Neal Heffernan Memorial Art Scholarship of $750, which she received at the LGSO's Flat Iron Park concert in August.
In other concerts this season, the LGSO will feature Christopher Martin, principal trumpeter with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, as soloist with the orchestra on Feb. 16. The orchestra will return to Lake Geneva's Riviera Ballroom for its annual gala on March 22 with lighter selections and the annual appearance of the Lake Geneva Symphony Swing Band. Shostakovich's “Symphony No. 5” will close the season on May 17. That concert also will feature Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto performed by acclaimed Icelandic violinist Ari Vilhjalmsson.
A new addition to the orchestra's programing for the season will be chamber music concerts, featuring LGSO musicians in smaller ensembles.
“Players have been representing the orchestra in string quartets, a woodwind quintet and a brass quintet for several years,” said LGSO board member Mike Frazier. “They have been performing at private functions. Now we want to showcase our ensembles for the whole community.”
Anderson chose the 2013-14 season theme, “Horizons,” to highlight the LGSO's growth.
“We just had a wonderfully successful 2012-13 season,” Anderson said. “The question now is 'what next?' As the number of players in the orchestra and its artistic level grow, possibilities open up to more repertoire. 'Pines of Rome' and Shostakovich's 'Fifth Symphony' are two challenging pieces at the heart of the repertoire that we'll play for the first time this season.”
The Wagner and Ravel works on the November program offer similarities and contrasts, Anderson said. “Both of these works are dominated by melody, but they emphasize it in incredibly different ways. Wagner is massive and complex, with many layers of music working together, while Ravel uses the orchestra like a painter using a color palette. He sets the melodic lines using unique instrument combinations.”
In “Pines of Rome,” Anderson said, “Listeners are taken on an emotional thrill ride, from the exciting opening to the ethereal second movement, to exquisite moments of beauty in the third and an enormous climax in the fourth.”
Tickets to the November concert are $10 for adults, free for students in grades K-12. They may be purchased at the door.