Old First Concerts
SUNDAY, APRIL 7, 2013 AT 4:00PM

Symphony Parnassus
 
Stephen Paulson, Music Director; Noémy Gagnon-Lafrenais, violin
 
Ernest Chausson Poème
Johannes Brahms Serenade No. 1
Laura Karpman Take Four

Founded in 1989, Symphony Parnassus encompasses the talents of musicians from the Bay Area community. The public’s enthusiastic response has been more than encouraging, as the orchestra has gone from small rehearsal halls to major concert venues under the leadership of Music Director Stephen Paulson. Their spring concert presents three works with free form structures, highlighting four-time Emmy-winning composer Laura Karpman's thrilling new concerto for sax quartet and orchestra, Take4. Commissioned by the Premiere Saxophone Quartet, this distinctly American mashup fuses inspiration taken from legendary performers and jazz standards. It explores the relationship between tradition and individual expression, framing its motifs against a backdrop that is at once playfully familiar and intriguingly new. Soft-spoken French composer Ernest Chausson wrote his Poème for Violin and Orchestra for the great violinist Eugène Ysaÿe, who played the premiere in 1897 to a storm of applause. Inspired by Ivan Turgenev’s short story, The Song of Love Triumphant, the Poème garnered praise from no less a composer than Debussy: “Fine music this, and full of ardor.” For this performance, Symphony Parnassus' own talented concertmaster Noémy Gagnon-Lafrenais will be featured as soloist. Also on the program is Brahms' Serenade No. 1, full of beauty, charm, joy, and a perfection of form in which the music's various moods are effortlessly expressed.

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