Alma Symphony Orchestra Celebrates 50th Season
The Alma Symphony Orchestra kicks off its 50th anniversary season with a gala opening concert that covers the gamut of emotions and drama, plus highlights the talents of an award-winning guest pianist.
“Orchestras inspire and excite us with great music that is significant and timeless — they feed our souls,” says Conductor Murray Gross.
The concert takes place at 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 18 in the Remick Heritage Center on the Alma College campus. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for seniors 62 and up, and free for Alma College staff, students and youth 18 and under. Seating is reserved. Call (989) 463-7304 for ticket information.
Alma Symphony Orchestra cellos
Founded in 1960, the ASO is celebrating its milestone anniversary with a series of concerts in 2009-10 that features the best of orchestral repertoire.
“We are more just a college orchestra; we are a college-community orchestra, and that is a good thing,” says Gross, the 10th conductor of the ASO entering his sixth season. “The fact that we include players from the community enables us to perform a full repertoire and gives our students the opportunity to perform side-by-side with more experienced players.”
Conductor Murray Gross
The Oct. 18 program will include the festive “Promenade Overture” by John Corigliano, Edward Elgar’s “Nimrod,” Ottorino Respighi’s thrilling “Pines of Rome” and Camille Saint-Saens’ Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor.
“The ‘Pines of Rome’ is a very exciting piece with a thrilling ending,” says Gross. “The Elgar piece is an absolutely gorgeous composition. And the ‘Promenade Overture” will provide some humor.”
Award-winning pianist Lori Sims will join the ASO for the piano concerto. Sims is the John T. Bernhard Professor of Music at Western Michigan University who has performed throughout America, Europe and China. Her honors include the First Prize Gold Medal at the 1998 Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition.
The Alma Symphony Council, a group of about 20 community volunteers, has planned several events and activities for the upcoming anniversary season, including a dinner and mini recital prior the opening gala concert, a commemorative keepsake holiday ornament, and the annual Pancakes in the Park event during Alma’s Highland Festival.
“The Alma Symphony Orchestra is truly the artistic jewel of Gratiot County — infusing a passion and appreciation for music to patrons and musicians alike and fostering an enduring partnership between Alma College and the greater community,” says Eric St. Onge, council president.
“As the orchestra marks its 50th anniversary, it is truly a testament to the visionary founders who established the symphony, the musicians who inspire the community year after year, and the patrons who provide unwavering support,” says St. Onge. “It takes efforts and commitment to build, strengthen and preserve such an outstanding symphony. Hats off to all those who have played a role in making the ASO a point of pride in Gratiot County.”
Posted: Fri, October 9th, 2009 at 9:28AM