Saturday, June 4, 2016

MOMENTUM BUILDS AT THE PRINCETON FESTIVAL A WEEK THAT BRINGS SILENT FILM/ORATORIO, CHAMBER MUSIC, A MUSICAL, AND FREE EVENTS.

THE PRINCETON FESTIVAL, WEEK 2

The Princeton Festival rolls into a second week filled with a number of season highlights, a multi media event of a classic silent film and live oratorio about Joan of Arc, Concordia Chamber Players, the opening of the musical Little Night Music, the finals of a competition for young pianists, and outstanding free lectures.

On Thursday, June 9, at 8:30pm The Princeton Festival, the Princeton Symphony Orchestra (PSO) and the Garden Theatre have partnered to present The Passion of Joan of Arc/Voices of Light, the classic 1928 film accompanied by Richard Einhorn’s moving oratorio. The concert performance will feature four vocal soloists, the Notre Dame Vocale, the Festival chorus and the PSO conducted by Carmen Helena Tellez with the Theatre providing the cinema projection. It takes place in the Princeton University Chapel at 8:30pm.

Preceding the performance at 5pm in the Garden Theatre, the composer himself will join with noted authorities Andrew Lovett, Professional Specialist in the Princeton University Department of Music, and Daniel Hobbins, Associate Professor of Medievel History , University of Notre Dame, in a conversation about the piece, its genesis, its composition, and the history behind it. Admission to the discussion is free and open to the public.

The Concordia Chamber Players have been a fixture at The Princeton Festival since its first season. Every year they have brought creative programming and superlative musicianship to the Festival, and this year is no exception. Heading this year’s program are folk songs arranged for tenor and piano by Benjamin Britten, composer of this year’s opera Peter Grimes, followed by “A Folk Tale” by Arnold Bax, more Britten, “ Canticle III” for tenor, horn and piano, and Brahms’ Piano Trio #1. As always, the members of Concordia, tenor Nicholas Phan, David Jolley, horn, Yoon Kwon, violin, Michelle Djokic, cello and artistic director, and Orio Weiss, piano, are outstanding talents with careers both as soloists and chamber musicians performing in major music festivals and orchestras. Concordia Chamber Players will perform on Friday evening, June 10, at 7:300m in Miller Chapel, Princeton Theological Seminary.

Accolades and awards have been raining down on Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music since its premiere on Broadway in 1973 and it promises to add new enthusiastic audiences when it opens for The Princeton Festival for 10 performances at 8pm on Saturday, June 11. With a vibrant cast of musical and comedic talent, Night Music will come alive again as these sophisticated, witty, confused characters gather for the weekend in 1900 Sweden trying to sort out their muddled lives. Sondheim’s music and lyrics are at their best and will bring humming, smiles and even a few rueful tears during these performances at 185 Nassau Street, Princeton on June 11, 12, 16, 17, 18, 19, 23, 24, 25 and 26. In a special free event, the “Six by Sondheim” movie will be shown in the Princeton Public Library at 6pm on June 6, followed by a discussion led by Princeton University professor Stacy Wolf.

Very accomplished pianists from age 6 to early 20’s will play for trophies, cash prizes and glory in the Finals of the Festival’s Competition for Young Artists at 3pm on Sunday, June 12, at the Clark Center, The Lawrenceville School. The Jacobs Music-sponsored competition will result with winners in six age categories and a Grand Prize for the most outstanding performer. A free reception follows the final round.

Coming up in the 3rd week of the Festival is Benjamin Britten’s Peter Grimes. For those who would like to get some advance insights into the opera, an international authority on Britten, Ryder University Professor of Music Stephen Allen will give a lecture, “Peter Grimes and Ellen Orford: Musical Relations – Apocalyptic Outcomes” in the Princeton Public Library at 7pm on June 7. The event is free.

For more information about all the events at the Festival and a link to ticket sales (handled by McCarter Theater), visit www.princetonfestival.org. To purchase tickets by phone, call McCarter Theatre at 609-258-2787.