|Symphony's 99th year ends with cello concerto|
One of this country’s leading cellists, Parry Karp, will be the guest artist at the Greater Grand Forks Symphony’s concert May 3 and 4 at the Empire Arts Center. Mr. Karp will be the soloist in Ernest Bloch’s Schelomo. The concert also includes Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s symphonic suite, Scheherazade. It is the final concert of the Symphony’s 99th “Legends and Fantasies” season under the direction of Maestro James Hannon.
Parry Karp is artist-in residence and professor of chamber music and cello at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he is director of the string chamber music program. He is cellist of the Pro Arte Quartet, a position he was awarded at the age of 19. Music critic Jonathan Woolf describes Mr. Karp as “one of the most distinguished chamber cellists in America.”
An active solo artist, Karp is the product of a musical family and has performed numerous recitals in the United States with his parents, pianists Howard and Frances Karp. He has also played concerti throughout the United States and gave the first performance in Romania of Ernest Bloch's Schelomo with the National Radio Orchestra in Bucharest in 2002.
Schelomo is the Hebrew word for Solomon, the ancient King of Israel to whom the biblical Book of Ecclesiastes is attributed. Bloch wrote the concerto in the early years of World War I, inspired by the familiar lines of Ecclesiastes beginning, “Vanity of vanities, all is vanities.” Critics have referred to Schelomo as a “virtuosic masterpiece,” that evokes the “magnificence of Solomon’s court.” Bloch’s own interpretation was that the cello was “the voice of Solomon, the rhapsodist of Ecclesiastes, proclaiming the usefulness in all things, while the orchestra represents the world surrounding him and his experiences of life.”
Rimsky-Korskakov’s Scheherazade, the last work on the program, was inspired by one of the best known works of Islamic culture, the Tales of the Arabian Knights. The music is lush and colorful, described by the composer as a “kaleidoscope of fairy-tale images.” Among the featured performers in the GGFSO production are Symphony Board President and oboist Philip McKenzie of Thief River Falls, violinist Eric Lawson of Bismarck, flautist Elizabeth Chaussé of Fargo, and UND faculty members Ronnie Ingle (trumpet), Peter Schiefelbein (horn), Naomi Welsh (cello), and Michael Wittgraf (bassoon).
The Greater Grand Forks Symphony is a ninety-nine year old community orchestra with offices in the Music Department of the University of North Dakota. The 65 musicians performing this season live in Grand Forks, East Grand Forks, Grafton, Thompson, Fargo, Moorhead, Fergus Falls, Crookston, Thief River Falls, Oslo, Minot, Hillsboro, Devil’s Lake, Bemidji and Bismarck. Major support is provided by grants from the City of Grand Forks through the North Valley Arts Council, the North Dakota Council on the Arts, the Myra Foundation, the North Dakota Eye Clinic, Hugo’s Family Marketplace, the UND Music Department and, contributors in Grand Forks and surrounding communities.
Tickets ($5-$18) may be reserved by calling 701-777-4090. For further information, call 701-777-3359 or go to www.ggfso.org.
-- Jennifer Tarlin, Executive Director, Greater Grand Forks Symphony, firstname.lastname@example.org, 777-3359