Traverse Symphony Orchestra presents Beethoven and Shostakovich

INTERLOCHEN — Distinguished Armenian cello soloist Suren Bagratuni returns to the Traverse Symphony Orchestra stage to perform the Shostakovich Cello Concerto No. 1 on March 18 at 3 p.m. in Corson Auditorium in Interlochen.

Also on the program are Michal Daugherty’s Sunset Strip and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2 in D major. Demonstrating his finest technical abilities, Bagratuni will perform the Shostakovich cello concerto, one of the great monuments in cello repertoire and a deeply personal work combining Romantic passion with Classical balance.

“Suren brings a history and sense of style with this piece like few artists out there today and we are so lucky to have him play it with us here in Traverse City,” says Maestro Kevin Rhodes. “Suren grew up in the former Soviet Union, where Shostakovich was a live, living figure certainly up to his death in 1975 and as recent legend right after that.”

Described as “a cellist of uncommon attainments” by the Boston Globe, Bagratuni has had a distinguished career as a soloist, recitalist and chamber musician, appearing with all of the major orchestras in the former Soviet Union, as well as with the Boston Pops, L’Orchestre Jeune Philharmonie in Paris, the Cleveland Institute of Music Orchestra, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra and many more.

The concert opens with a movement from contemporary American composer Michael Daugherty’s Sunset Strip, a composition within a series of Daugherty’s works inspired by American places. Daugherty creates a musical landscape with the sounds and images along this famous two-lane California strip from the ’50s through the ’90s, and the feeling of switching lanes back and forth between the present, past and future.

The program will close with Beethoven’s energetic and cheerful Symphony No. 2 in D major.

“One of Beethoven’s most relentlessly positive, beautiful and fun-filled symphonies, this work always has a special place for me,” says Maestro Kevin Rhodes. “It’s the very first Beethoven symphony I ever conducted as an undergrad music major, many, many years ago. I always get a big smile when I think of that work and the many years I’ve spent with it and its amazing feeling of joy.”

The community is invited to Lunch with the Maestro before the concert on March 15 at the Traverse City Golf and Country Club. The Lunch with the Maestro series, sponsored by Rehmann, takes place on select Thursdays prior to performances and offers an educational and insightful look into the music to be performed by the TSO.

Tickets are at a cost and cover the cost of lunch. To purchase concert or Lunch with the Maestro tickets, call (231) 947-7120 or visit www.traversesymphony.org.

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Posted by Ashlyn Korienek

Ashlyn is the cops & courts and city reporter for the Manistee News Advocate. You can reach her at (231) 398-3109 or akorienek@pioneergroup.com

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