Lake Forest High School Musicians and Lake Forest Civic Orchestra partner to perform Grieg and Shostakovich on Sunday, March 16, 2014
March 13, 2014
Sponsored post by Lake Forest High School Musicians and Lake Forest Civic Orchestra
The Lake Forest Civic Orchestra, Ron Arden, Conductor and Music Director, will share the podium with Robert Bassill, Director of Orchestras & Music Theory, on Sunday, March 16, 2014, 4:00 p.m., at Lake Forest High School, 1285 N. McKinley Road, Lake Forest, in the 3rd concert of its 25th Anniversary 2013-2013 Concert Season, “Community Inspiration.”
Formerly the North Suburban Symphony, the name change took place at our 25th Anniversary concert this past November, and is in keeping with the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra’s association with the community, that we are volunteers, that we believe in making a place for everyone to play, and that we are in it for the long haul.
This season’s partnership with the Lake Forest High School Band and Orchestra Departments marks the third time the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra has partnered with student musicians for a joint concert, the first time in 2010, then again in 2012.
Robert Bassill’s two string orchestras will participate — the Concert Orchestra with 41 players and the Symphony Orchestra with 35. When asked about his string students and their achievement, Mr. Bassill gave this response: “The students have so many achievements in academics and sports I wouldn’t even know where to start! We usually have the smartest kids in the school involved. For example, the principal cellist is going to Yale next year. I am fortunate to work with such talented students.”
As an orchestra calls for woodwind, brass and percussion players, Lake Forest High School Band Director, Janene Kessler, requested that band members elect to participate by joining up with Bassill’s string groups and the forty members of the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra. Brian O’Connor, as instrumental music assistant, helped both Bassill and Keesler in concert preparations.
All excellent musicians and performers in their own right, Robert Bassill will perform as a member of both the violin and the viola sections when Ron Arden is at the podium conducting. Janene Kessler will join the Horn section and Brian O’Connor the percussion during the performance of Shostakovich’s “Symphony No. 5.” Lake Forest Civic Orchestra conductor, Ron Arden, will assist the viola section when Robert Bassill is at the podium conducting.
The March 16th partnership concert also involves a partnership of the players from Lake Forest High School and those of the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra. Whenever possible a Lake Forest High School musician will be seated next to a Lake Forest Civic Orchestra musician. High school musicians have also been assigned important solos in deference to the more seasoned Lake Forest Civic Orchestra players.
The “Holberg Suite” by Edvard Grieg will open the program. Grieg is considered Norway’s greatest composer. He was able to capture the people, the scenery, and the moods of Norway through his music. Subtitled “Suite in olden style,” the “Holberg Suite” consists of five movement based on 18th century dances. Grieg wrote this composition to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Danish-Norwegian humanist play write Ludvig Holberg. A charming collection of dances, Basill’s “Concert” and “Symphony” string orchestras will share the stage with members of the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra string sections.
Following the “Holberg Suite,” Dimiti Shostakovich’s powerful “Symphony in D minor, Op. 47″ will be performed by Bassill’s Symphonic string orchestra, selected player’s from Kessler’s band program, and members of the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra.
Shostakovich’s “5th Symphony” reflects the times in which it was written. Composed between April and July 1937 and first performed on November 21, 1937, it was during the height of the Stalinist Terror when over half a million people were shot and another seven million dispatched to the Gulag in just over a year’s time.
The four movements of the symphony are seeped in an atmosphere of mourning for those who had lost friends and family on a massive scale. With the “5th “Symphony” Shostakovich gained back favor with the Russian government, having fallen out of favor over a controversial opera he wrote in 1937 which didn’t display the heroic classicism demanded by the government.
As listeners you will be both pleased and surprised. The caliber of the Lake Forest High School musicians is outstanding. They are a credit to both their directors, Robert Bassill and Janene Kessler.
Tickets can be purchased on the day of the concert or check out our Website: lakeforestcivicorchestra.org. Adults, $18.00; Seniors/Students, $10.00; children under 12 admitted free with a paying adult.
The final concert of the 25th Anniversary Season of the Lake Forest Civic Orchestra, “Imagining the Next 25 Years!”, will be held in the auditorium at Gorton Community Center in Lake Forest on Sunday, May 4, at 4:00 p.m. Featured will be music by Bartok, Stravinsky,Debussy, and Williams.