This month the International Symphony Orchestra will partner with the Symphony Singers to present “Birthday Letters” Friday, March 27st, 7:30 p.m. at Hillside Wesleyan Church, Clyde Twp MI and Saturday, February 22nd, 7:30 p.m. at Temple Baptist Church, Sarnia.
Under the baton of Maestro Douglas Bianchi, the orchestra will debut not one but TWO original works: the ballet score Unearth by Canadian indie music legend and Polaris Prize winner Owen Pallett, and the River of Silk symphony by US composer and longtime ISO associate Charles Stephens.
Also on the program is perhaps the most ambitious and controversial work undertaken by David Troiano’s Symphony Singers: the Prokofiev cantata Zdravitsa, composed and performed in 1939 as a forced and awkward birthday tribute to Josef Stalin. A work of unrelenting beauty amidst ugly dictatorship and impending war, for decades it has been a debate issue for both musical and political historians, and remains rarely performed. When it received its first commercial recording in 1996 by the London Philharmonic, a different text entirely was used; here the ISO follows most of the original Russian, with added English text derived from the folk verse of Russian poet Pushkin. Evocative of all imaginable conflicting emotions, the greatness of Prokofiev’s music also (with luck) shines through.
The Singers will also perform the gorgeous Faure Pavane. Rounding out Birthday Letters is Massenet’s Phedre overture and the celebrated Mahler Blumine.
Tickets may be purchased at the Symphony Office (143 Christina Street North, Sarnia)
or by calling 519-337-7775 (CAN) or 810-984-8857(USA).
You may also buy online at www.theiso.org/tickets or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Friday, March 27th – Hillside Wesleyan Church, MI 7:30 pm
Adult $32, Senior $30, Student $9, Children (14 and under) $2
Saturday, March 28th – Temple Baptist Church, Sarnia ON 7:30 pm
Adult $35, Senior $33, Student $10, Children (14 & under) $2 (CDN prices include 13% HST)