The beginning of Spectrum Orchestra’s fifth season is expected to bring high quality orchestral music due to refinements made to the music programming formula.
“This season I am focusing less on programming music that becomes gradually more challenging as the season progresses but instead turning our attention to simpler music to be played at a even higher level,” conductor and Music Director Kevin Fitzgerald said following the orchestra’s first rehearsal Thursday evening. “We want our audiences to hear highly polished performances of more standard orchestral repertoire.”
The November concert is scheduled to showcase the orchestra playing with guest pianist Pauline Martin – a first for Spectrum.
“Pauline is a world class artist and I am happy to say also my piano teacher. Once we developed a working relationship I felt the need to invite her to play with Spectrum.”
Spectrum will be accompanying Martin in a performance of Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor and Chopin’s andante Spianato and Grande Polonaise.
“The Mendelssohn and the Chopin are a great pair as they both showcase her virtuosity and lyrical playing,” Fitzgerald explained. “I am excited to be able to collaborate with Pauline as peers, not as student to teacher.”
Fitzgerald has seen musical growth in this partnership. “In our lessons she is teaching me how to get the music I hear in my head to come through my hands into the keys of the piano. It will be nice to experience the intimacy of artistic collaboration on an ‘even playing field’, so to speak.”
“Based on the high level of Spectrum’s first rehearsal, I anticipate the concerti sounding excellent for the concert.”
In addition to the Mendelssohn and Chopin, the orchestra will be also performing Beethoven’s Leonore Overture No. 3.
“The Leonore Overture No.3 is one of the most standard overtures in the repertoire and it’s a lot of fun! I had never conducted it before and I wanted to try my hand at it (pun intended).”
“I think Spectrum can play all three of these pieces at a very high level,” he added. “We may add one more piece to the program but I will leave that as a surprise now!”’