March 2- 8, 2006
musicpicksPhiladelphia Classical Symphony
The American musical experience is as broad as any other aspect of our culture. So despite the stereotypical brash and jazzy flavor associated with New World music, it should not be surprising to find a broad streak of full blown Romanticism as well. A concert by the Philadelphia Classical Symphony celebrates that impulse, which has strong roots in our city. The composition department at the Curtis Institute of Music has always favored Romanticism, most famously personified by Samuel Barber. His Canzonetta for Solo Oboe and Strings, a late work, will be performed by Curtis grad and current faculty member Richard Woodhams, the superb principal oboist of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Woodhams will also present the world premiere of a work by a Curtis classmate, Chuck Holdeman, a musician probably best known to local audiences as the bassoonist for Relâche for many years. His Concerto tre d'uno is a triple challenge for Woodhams, as it calls for the use of three different double reed instruments; the oboe d'amore, oboe and English horn.
Philadelphia Classical Symphony is the love child of conductor and educator Karl Middleman. The ensemble actually began life as a period instrument ensemble, but has been transformed into an important local resource for new music. The all-American program will also include music by Arthur Foote ("so effusive, like a big overly affectionate dog," says Middleman) and Marion Bauer ("a little gushy but refined by great intellect"), as well as the 2001 Pulitzer Prize-winning "Nocturne" from John Corigliano's Symphony No. 2.
Sun., March 5, 3 p.m., $25-$35, Holy Trinity Church, 1904 Walnut St., 610-664-8481, www.classicalsymphony.org.