5. Of Choirs and Pianists, of Opera Troupes and Lightpaintings
Last week, the Shreveport Opera was in Alexandria for a week-long residency including eight terrific school performances and culminating in an excellent public performance at Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center. The five talented young musicians delighted every audience they encountered, exposing opera to many people who had never before encountered the genre and finding themselves becoming local celebrities. In the time I spent with the troupe, I truly enjoyed their company, discussing our shared love for music. With the troupe receiving so much praise, the Arts Council of Central Louisiana is already looking for ways to bring the Shreveport Opera back to our community in the future.
So, what do music lovers have to look forward to this coming week? On Tuesday, October 15, the Red River Chorale will hold their first concert of the season. Entitled Expressions of Faith – Sacred Music, Hymns, and Spirituals, concertgoers should expect to hear sacred music by composers such as Aaron Copland, John Rutter, Martin Shaw, and a host of others. There’ll be both traditional music and much newer works, all with a spiritual emphasis.
Additionally, the Alexandria Museum of Art will host Benjamin Richey as part of their Second Saturday Market this Saturday, October 12, and, on Thursday, October 17, Tammy Hromadka will be the featured musician for the Museum’s Acoustic Concert Series. Remember that the Museum’s exhibit Stephen Knapp: New Light will continue to be on display until Saturday, November 23. I mention this here because of the fundamental role that music has played in inspiring Knapp to create these works: not only do many of his lightpaintings feature musical titles, but Knapp has also stated that he often takes his cues from the opera he has cranked-up on his stereo while working. I enjoyed seeing the exhibit at its opening, and I hope you’ll have a chance to see it for yourself when you make your visit to the Museum.
And, before the month’s out, the Arts Council of Central Louisiana will hold its fall ArtWalk with its plentiful supply of musical acts, plus dozens of talented young pianists will flock to the Alexandria area for the Louisiana International Piano Competition. Then there’s Tarzan of the Apes which will be a whole adventure in and of itself! October’s packed with great music events, so make sure to mark your calendars now!
About Jackson. Jackson Harmeyer is a recent graduate of the Louisiana Scholars’ College – Louisiana’s designated honors college located on the campus of Northwestern State University. There, he studied music history, completing an undergraduate thesis entitled “Learning from the Past: The Influence of Johann Sebastian Bach upon the Soviet Composers.” Now living in Alexandria, he is one of the founding members of TicketCentral and will also be writing this season’s program notes for the Rapides Symphony Orchestra.