Filtering by: Festival Series
Festival Series 1 — Saint-Saëns and Dvořák
Jun
11
7:30 PM19:30

Festival Series 1 — Saint-Saëns and Dvořák

The opening Festival Series performance of the 2019 June season takes a close look at two distinct but related styles of composition. We have on the one hand the Sonata in D minor, Op. 75, by Camille Saint-Saëns, and the Piano Quintet in A, Op. 81, by Antonin Dvořák. One lays the groundwork for the style known as Impressionism, while the other barters overtly in the compositional movement known as Nationalism, though no less image-rich than its French counterpart. These pieces were composed about two years and 550 miles apart, the former in 1885 (Paris), the latter in 1887 (Prague).

How are they similar? Different? Both are crowd-pleasers (lucky you!), and both showcase the respective virtuosity of their instrumentation. As a brief introductory answer to those rhetorical questions, rhythm is the thing. Saint-Saëns begins to intentionally obscure “natural” rhythmic cycles while Dvořák revels in the most direct and impactful expression of meter. What does all this mean? It means you best attend and enjoy, because no amount of dissection will reveal the twin joys contained in these Romantic masterpieces. To feel the joy, you must only listen.

Artists: Timothy Christie, viola; Norbert Lewandowski, cello; Christina McGann, violin; Stephen Miahky, violin; Maria Sampen, violin; Jingwen Tu, piano

Doors open at 6:30 pm.

General admission $20, family $45, student/youth $10

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Festival Series 2 — Night Music
Jun
15
7:30 PM19:30

Festival Series 2 — Night Music

Night Music. Brings to mind Bob Seger and his evident work regarding “night moves.” However, we at WWCMF are taking a different tack. Night means all sorts of things. For example, there are animals that only come out at night. Turns out, these animals make different sounds than those that inhabit daylight. Béla Bartók was a composer who was famously fascinated by night sounds. His Third String Quartet stands as a great example of music conceived with a nocturnal soundscape in mind.

But Bartók is modern, you say. Yes, ’tis true. However, the night occupied classicists, modernists and romantics alike. That’s why we are placing a little bit of each on this program. I don’t need to say anything about Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, do I? And what about poor Schubert? He worked on his “night moves,” too. Enter the Notturno in E Flat, D. 897, which stands as a late masterpiece by Schubert, as late as we can consider age 31 to be.

So, join us for a little bit of night music. We’ll throw in a little bit of Nachtmusik for free.

Artists: Natasha Bazhanov, violin; Timothy Christie, viola; Artur Girsky, violin; Girsky String Quartet; Rowena Hammill, cello; Norbert Lewandowski, cello; Maria Sampen, violin; Steve Schermer, bass; Jingwen Tu, piano

Doors open at 6:30 pm.

General admission $20, family $45, student/youth $10

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Festival Series 3 — Barber and Wagner
Jun
22
7:30 PM19:30

Festival Series 3 — Barber and Wagner

WWCMF presents a program of stunning variety for our third Festival Series performance of the June 2019 season. The cast includes piano, violin, viola, cello, double bass, flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, horn, trumpet and trombone. These amazing artists perform with such outstanding ensembles as the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra (NY), Cleveland Orchestra (OH), Boston Modern Orchestra Project (MA) and the Seattle Symphony during the year. In June, we have them all to ourselves in Walla Walla.

With all these virtuoso musicians, there’s something for everyone. The Webern Concerto for Nine Instruments will challenge your sense of sonic order, Barber’s Summer Music for woodwind quintet will breeze through the Power House Theater like the summer wind and Wagner’s Siegfried Idyll will evoke an ancient forest replete with woodland critters. Spanning influences from serial music to American post-tonal harmony to jazz to unabashed romanticism, this program has it all. Join us for a concert sure to change your perception of what chamber music can be.

Artists: Sarah Brady, flute; Rodger Burnett, horn; Timothy Christie, viola; Billy Ray Hunter, trumpet; Norbert Lewandowski, cello; Christina McGann, violin; Paul Rafanelli, bassoon; Maria Sampen, violin; Kevin Schempf, clarinet; Steven Schermer, bass; Weston Sprott, trombone; Anna Stoytcheva, piano; Dan Williams, oboe

Doors open at 6:30 pm.

General admission $20, family $45, student/youth $10

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Festival Series 4 — Happy Birthday to You!
Jun
29
7:30 PM19:30

Festival Series 4 — Happy Birthday to You!

Tonight, we blow out the candles on the 2019 Festival Series, literally. The program will end with a kaleidoscopic version of Happy Birthday To You. Did you know the iconic tune was composed by two American women, Patty and Mildred J. Hill? Yup. It happened in 1893, round about the time Sibelius composed the string trio that opened the very first Festival Series performance of 2019 back in January. Talk about coming full-circle. In this case, however, the famous tune has been given the “Winston Choi” treatment… That means lots of musical Easter Eggs for you to identify. It’s a mashup worthy of the 300+ birthdays we will celebrate in honor of those who attend.

There’s more. Submerged for flute, harp and viola by Uruguayan-American composer, Miguel del Águila, Compline for string quartet, flute, clarinet and harp by Christopher Rouse, plus the Piano Quintet in G minor, Op. 57, by Dimitri Shostakovich round out the program. Excellent music, all, but I suggest you come to toast the anniversary of your own birth. It’ll be quite the celebration, and you deserve it!

Artists: Sarah Brady, flute; Winston Choi, piano; Timothy Christie, viola; Katri Ervamaa, cello; Norbert Lewandowski, cello; Amy Ley, harp; Christina McGann, violin; Stephen Miahky, violin; Philip Payton, violin; Maria Sampen, violin; Kevin Schempf, clarinet; MingHuan Xu, violin

Doors open at 6:30 pm.

General admission $20, family $45, student/youth $10

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