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3 Free Concerts Kick Off Major Ensembles' 2009-10 Season
Hundreds of musicians from Oklahoma City University’s major ensembles perform this week in three season-opening concerts. Each event begins at 8 p.m. in Petree Recital Hall, is free and open to the public. Dr. Matthew Mailman and the Wind Philharmonic kick off the triple header on Tuesday with works by Walter Piston, Charles Gounod, Charles Ives, Robert Russell Bennett, Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and Martin Mailman. ?Johnny Warren Mitchell will make his Wind Philharmonic conducting debut with Ives’ fugue. Mitchell is a second-year conducting graduate student, with a choral specialty. Gounod’s “Petite Symphonie” features 10 musicians, including soloists Carley Flowers (flute), William Smith (oboe), Lisa Hollowell (clarinet), and Zack Tijerina (bassoon). Bishop Robert Hayes will take the stage Thursday, narrating Aaron Copland’s “Lincoln Portrait” at the season-opening concert for the Oklahoma City University Symphony Orchestra. Mark Parker, celebrating his 20th season at OCU, will conduct. A free pre-concert talk by associate conductor Benjamin Nilles will be held in the Atrium of the Bass Music Center at 7:30 p.m. The concert also will feature soloist Jason Jupiterwala in the first movement of Antonin Dvorák’s Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104. ?The program opens with Leonard Bernstein’s Overture to Candide, followed by Corral Nocturne and Saturday Night Waltz from Copland’s “Rodeo,” led by graduate conductor William Bohn. ?The concert will conclude with Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95, from Dvorák’s symphony “From the New World.” ? On Friday, nearly 200 voices will join as OCU’s University Singers, University Men's Chorus, Ad Astra Women's Chorus and Chamber Choir perform at the season’s first full choral concert. The choruses are under the direction of Dr. Randi Von Ellefson and Professor Judith Willoughby. The men's chorus will perform an arrangement of the Wesleyan hymn "Blow Ye the Trumpet” as well as the popular "The Last Words of David" by Randall Thompson. Chamber Choir member Kirsten Mikkelsen will be featured in a selection from Claude Debussy’s “Trois Chansons.” Chamber Choir singers will perform a work by Gerald Finzi, and end their portion of the program with “The Feller from Fortune,” a rousing folk arrangement by Canadian composer Harry Somers. OCU master’s student Johnny Mitchell, featured earlier in the week with the Wind Philharmonic, will direct the Harding Academy Choir in an English madrigal. The youth also will perform with the University Singers. For more information on any of this week’s concerts, contact Parker’s office at the Bass School of Music at 208-5474.