Issaquah musicians join performance at Ten Grands concert

April 1, 2014

NEW — 6 a.m. April 1, 2014

Local students will be among the many musicians performing at the annual Ten Grands concert April 4.

Nearly three-dozen young musicians from 11 high schools will perform at Seattle’s Benaroya Hall during the evening’s showcase of talent that benefits music education.

Selected musicians will appear both onstage with the featured Ten Grands professional pianists, as well as in the Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby starting at 6 p.m., an hour before the Ten Grands concert begins.

Performing with the choir on stage is Issaquah High School soprano Ashley Young. Issaquah duet “The Half Steps” Bryan Hanner, baritone, and Elizabeth Moore, mezzo-soprano, will perform in the grand lobby.

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Sammamish Symphony announces new season

October 15, 2013

The Sammamish Symphony Orchestra recently announced its 2013-14 season lineup, offering options for single performance tickets or season packages.

Performance dates are:

  • Romeo and Juliet — 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18, Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue; 2 p.m. Eastlake Performing Arts Theater
  • Holiday Pops — 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6, Meydenbauer; 2 p.m. Eastlake
  • Northern Lights — 2 p.m. Feb. 23, Eastlake; 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27, Meydenbauer
  • Mozart’s Great Mass in C Minor — 2 p.m. March 20, Benaroya Hall in Seattle
  • Pictures at an Exhibition — 7:30 p.m. June 6, Meydenbauer; 2 p.m. Eastlake

Single-ticket prices for performances at the Eastlake Performing Arts Theater and the Meydenbauer Center are $20 for adults, $15 for seniors and students, and $15 for children, ages 10 and younger. All Benaroya Hall tickets are $30 per seat.

Season tickets are $90 for adults, $75 for seniors and students, and $30 for children.

Learn more by calling 206-517-7777 or emailing info@sammamishsymphony.org, or go to SammamishSymphony.org.

 

Master Chorus Eastside’s concert celebrates American music

June 19, 2012

Master Chorus Eastside’s popular Celebrate America concert returns once again to Issaquah’s Pickering Barn in two performances to commemorate the Fourth of July.

American music of all styles, including early Americana, folk tunes, spirituals and others stand side by side with Linda Gingrich’s signature commentary to create an unforgettable Independence Celebration on June 24. Read more

Sammamish Symphony Mardi Gras performance features guest pianist

February 21, 2012

Kimberly Russ

For R. Joseph Scott, Mardi Gras means lively, sprightly music.

And that is exactly what Scott has planned for a Mardi Gras concert of the Sammamish Symphony Orchestra slated for Feb. 26 at the Eastlake Performing Arts Center.

The concert will feature guest pianist Kimberly Russ, of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

Russ will perform Beethoven’s “Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 15.”

“The third movement is very lively and dance-like,” Scott said, meaning that to him, the music is perfectly in keeping with the Mardi Gras theme.

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County invites public to Martin Luther King Jr. celebration

January 10, 2012

King County leaders and employees plan to pause for the 25th year to honor slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

The public is invited to join county employees at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle for the noon Jan. 12 celebration. (The federal holiday to honor King is observed Jan. 16.)

Speakers at the celebration will include County Executive Dow Constantine, County Council Chairman Larry Gossett and former King County Councilman Bruce Laing, a leader in the effort to rename the county for King.

The celebration includes musical performances by Abráce, a Seattle-based group meant to foster intercultural understanding through music, and the reunited MLK Employee Singers. The group of county employees has performed at previous celebrations.

The event’s theme is “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?’” and county employees reflected on the statement. Participants plan to share some of the reflections at the event.

The event also features the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Student Essay Award ceremony, a contest sponsored by the King County Civil Rights Commission.

Leaders invite public to Martin Luther King Jr. celebration

January 5, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 5, 2012

King County leaders and employees plan to pause for the 25th year to honor slain civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

The public is invited to join county employees at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle for the noon Jan. 12 celebration. (The federal holiday to honor King is observed Jan. 16.)

Speakers at the celebration include County Executive Dow Constantine, County Council Chairman Larry Gossett and former King County Councilmember Bruce Laing, a leader in the effort to rename the county for King.

The celebration includes musical performances by Abráce, a Seattle-based group meant to foster intercultural understanding through music, and the reunited MLK Employee Singers. The group of county employees has performed at previous celebrations.

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Russian melodies launch Sammamish Symphony Orchestra season

October 18, 2011

 R. Joseph Scott conducts the Sammamish Symphony Orchestra during rehearsal Oct. 13 at the Eastlake High School band room. By Christopher Huber

To some classical music connoisseurs, Rimsky-Korskoff’s “Capriccio Espagnole” will provide 15 minutes of harmonic bliss when the Sammamish Symphony Orchestra performs it this month.

“It’s 15 minutes of pure joy,” said Joseph Scott, the symphony’s longtime conductor and music director.

The orchestral piece features constant interplay between Concertmaster Dennis Helppie, of Sammamish, on violin, and the harpist and brass section. But it won’t be the only piece to look forward to at the symphony’s 2011 opening concert in Sammamish.

On Oct. 23, the symphony is rolling out the red carpet to celebrate its 20th year on the plateau. The group, which draws performers from 25 cities in King County, will perform “Russian Fireworks” at 2 p.m. at the Eastlake Performing Arts Center. The program will include a Rachmaninoff piano concerto, “Capriccio Espagnole, Op. 34” and Tchaikovsky’s “1812 Overture, Op. 49.”

“An organization needs to celebrate milestones,” Scott said. “It’s good to show off the orchestra and what we’re good at. It’s still not as much a household name as we would like it to be.”

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Youthful maestros to perform in Seattle International Piano Competition

October 18, 2011

Henry Gao, 10, practices at the keyboards in Issaquah’s Chopin Academy of Music. By Tom Corrigan

One is talkative, the other a little more quiet, but both are well spoken. They are roughly the same age and have the same ethnic background. They are friends, one getting a big smile on his face at the mention of the other’s name.

More importantly here, they attend the same piano school, the Chopin Academy of Music in Issaquah. They have the same teacher in Ivona Kaminska. They are also two of only eight finalists for their age group in the Seattle International Piano Competition to take place Oct. 22-23 at Benaroya Hall.

“I think I’m very lucky … It feels really exciting,” said Henry Gao, who just turned 10.

At 8, his friend Arthur Yan is following in the footsteps of older brother Robert, 11, who won a gold medal at the same competition in 2009.

Arthur and Henry will be competing in the 9 and under age category, as Henry was 9 when his audition tape won him a spot in the event.

Henry started playing at age 5. Mom Di Ding said her son didn’t take to the piano immediately.

“After several months, he progressed very fast,” she said.

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Singers invited to audition for Master Chorus Eastside

August 16, 2011

Master Chorus Eastside is holding auditions in all sections in preparation for the 2011-12 season, including a collaborative performance of Verdi’s “Requiem” in Seattle’s Benaroya Hall.

The season includes holiday concerts in Sammamish and Kirkland in December, a concert celebration of all things Celtic in preparation for St. Patrick’s Day in March, and the Verdi “Requiem” in April, in conjunction with several other local choruses and orchestra. The chorus will conclude its season in June with two performances of its popular All-American Independence Celebration in Issaquah’s historic Pickering Barn.

All interested singers must have choral experience and basic music reading ability. Get an audition appointment by calling 392-8446. Learn more about the chorus at www.masterchoruseastside.org.

Master Chorus Eastside summer concert celebrates America

June 21, 2011

Master Chorus Eastside kicks off the Fourth of July with its 13th annual All-American Independence Celebration in Issaquah’s historic Pickering Barn on June 26.

The chorus will perform American music of all styles, including early Americana pieces, frontier music, gospel and sing-a-longs. Master Chorus Artistic Director and Conductor Dr. Linda Gingrich and several chorus members will complement the musical arrangements with “tall tales,” Gingrich said.

She uses her signature commentary as a vehicle to help the audience connect with the concert.

“Commentary usually includes some historical information or information about how the composer may have come to write the piece,” she said. “I try to build the commentary into the form of a story to help the audience understand what they’re listening to.”

The theme of this year’s Independence Celebration, American Legends, provides a repertoire of songs and stories representing John Henry, Paul Bunyan, Pecos Bill, Chief Joseph and Davy Crockett.

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