Sammamish Symphony to headline Benaroya Hall

March 9, 2010

By Chantelle Lusebrink

The Sammamish Symphony Orchestra is packing it up and leaving the plateau behind for the mainstage of Benaroya Hall for a special one-night performance March 14.The symphony has been invited to perform in Northwest Associated Arts’ performance of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s “Requiem.” The ensemble features five regional groups, including the symphony at Benaroya Hall.

It is a unique opportunity for the 86-member symphony, which usually performs at Eastlake High School, and the second time they have been asked to perform with Northwest Associated Arts.

“For us to get invited back to Benaroya is huge,” said vice president of the board Debbie McCormick. “It will get people in surrounding communities to find out about us and see how talented our musicians are.”

The concert is an opportunity to see the regional artistry of five of the region’s finest performing arts ensembles, said Mark Adrian, Northwest Associated Arts conductor.

“We feel the symphony orchestra in Sammamish is the best kept secret in our community, which isn’t a good thing,” McCormick said. “We are in our 18th season. We’ve been playing all these years and still there are very few people that know about us.”

Joining Northwest Associated Arts Cantaré group and the Sammamish Symphony Orchestra are the Vashon Island Chorale, the Cascadian Chorale, the Everett Chorale and the Rainier Chorale.

“This concert, what is so exciting and special about it, is anybody can come and hear a performance with five different groups who are all exceptional,” Adrian said. “Usually, you’re just stuck with one.”

Each group has a 15-minute solo performance, Adrian said. Selected choral works from Ferruccio Busoni’s “Turandot Suite” and Mozart’s “Requiem,” among others, will be performed.

The evening concludes with the 300 musicians performing “Requiem” together onstage.

“Just going to the rehearsals to hear them practice sends shivers down my spine and I get the giggles, because ‘Requiem’ is so wonderful,” McCormick said. “Then, to hear it in that space will make it so much better with our musicians in that venue. There’s just so much talent.”

“Here, you’ll hear five different things and experience one of the greatest chorale works ever written, all in one afternoon,” Adrian said.

The Sammamish orchestra began as the Providence Point Players in 1994. But it has grown into a full symphony orchestra, made up primarily of Eastside residents with a few musicians coming from cities like Edmonds and Des Moines.

Throughout the years, the symphony has remained committed, becoming an integral part of the community and providing musical experiences for residents at an affordable price. The group has several concerts throughout the year and prides itself in providing musical entertainment for all types of audiences, McCormick said.

“People have no idea what they’re missing,” she said. “Today, for this economy and what it costs to hear this caliber of music and these talented musicians, who are all volunteers, is just a phenomenal price.”

If you go

Northwest Associated Arts presents Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s ‘Requiem’

-2 p.m. March 14

-Benaroya Hall

-200 University St., Seattle

-In advance: $25, 206-517-777

-At the door: $30

Chantelle Lusebrink: 392-6434, ext. 241, or Comment at

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