The Orange Coast College Symphony and OCC Choral Ensemble will perform music by three beloved and accomplished European composers on Saturday, May 11 at 7:30 p.m. in the Robert B. Moore Theatre.
OCC Symphony Conductor Maxim Kuzin and Director of Choral and Vocal Activities Eliza Rubenstein will lead the musicians for the program, which will begin with Gioachino Rossini's Overture to his final Italian opera Semiramide. The popular concert piece is unique because it quotes musical themes from the opera itself, which is based on a tragedy by Voltaire.
"This overture is full of Rossini's beautiful tunes, energy, and even musical wit. The music has very intricate grande flute, piccolo (small flute), and clarinet solos," says Kuzin.
Next the symphony will perform Edvard Hagerup Grieg's Piano Concerto in A minor with Dr. Brian Gould, head of OCCs' piano program, as the lead soloist.
"The Grieg Piano Concerto is a Romantic masterpiece full of passion, drama and beautiful melodies," says Gould. "This is one of my favorite concertos. I look forward to performing it again and hope the audience enjoys it as much as I do!"
After intermission, OCC's Symphony will be joined by the 50-member OCC Chamber Singers to present the joyous and exciting Mass in Time of War by Franz Joseph Haydn, a cheery contemporary of Mozart.
The Chamber Singers are OCC's most select choral ensemble, and will be joined by a quartet of soloists, including Coast music faculty Nadia Smelser.
"This is a chance to hear the Chamber Singers perform this work on the West Coast before we take it to Carnegie Hall in June," says Rubenstein.
Tickets for the performance run $15 for the general public, and $10 with a student ID. Tickets can be purchased in advance at the OCC Bursar's Office, located in the Clark Center, or at www.occtickets.com