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  • Writer's pictureJackson Harmeyer

42. Rapides Symphony Orchestra Welcomes Tango del Cielo, January 25

© Rapides Symphony Orchestra 2015

Sunday, January 25, Maestro Joshua Zona and the Rapides Symphony Orchestra welcome harpist Anna Maria Mendieta and Tango del Cielo to Central Louisiana. This spectacular program of music and dance will feature Mendieta herself on harp plus other soloists on violin, cello, and percussion alongside several tango and flamenco dancers. Meaning “Tango from Heaven,” Tango del Cielo invites you to relax and listen to this wonderful music and let your imagination run free.

Sunday’s program – specially selected and arranged by Mendieta – includes familiar music by Spanish and Latin American composers ranging from classical masterpieces to flamenco and Latin jazz. Music by Astor Piazzolla features prominently. Argentine composer Piazzolla is credited as the creator of the modern concert hall tango. His four-part suite Histoire du Tango was heard at December’s Abendmusik Alexandria where Rapides Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Lin He and guitarist Jay Kacherski amazed audiences with its beauty. On Sunday’s program, the RSO will play its first movement Bordel 1900 as well as other music by Piazzolla including Ave Maria, Oblivion, and others.

Elsewhere on Sunday’s program, listeners will hear the famous Leyenda de Asturias by Spanish composer Isaac Albéniz. This guitar classic with its pulsing rhythms is here arranged for orchestra by Vincent Russo. The Spanish Dance from La Vida Bréve by Manuel de Falla and the Danzon from Fancy Free by Leonard Bernstein will also feature on Sunday’s program. Plus, the touching second movement from the Concierto de Aranjuez by Joaquín Rodrigo will be heard in its arrangement as Spain by contemporary jazz master Chick Corea.

Argentine Astor Piazzolla (1921-1992) is considered the father of the modern tango.

So much of this music will be familiar to audiences, and in so many ways it will be new thanks to the arrangements made especially for Tango del Cielo. The concert this Sunday, January 25 begins at 2:30 PM and will be held at Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center. Buy your tickets now!

And, just around the corner in February, classical music lovers will have the chance to hear three additional great, local programs. The first is Abendmusik Alexandria’s Trio de Llano in Concert on February 5 when flutist Dennette McDermott, clarinetist Malena McLaren, and bassoonist Douglas Bakenhus will delight audiences. In addition to the other gems on their program, Trio de Llano will give the world premiere of a brand new piece by Shreveport-based composer Todd Gabriel.

A few days later on February 8, pianist Charles Jones will give a recital of music by Mozart, Liszt, and Nazareth as part of a concert called Dancing on the Keys and benefiting the Dan Hill Memorial Scholarship Fund which provides an annual scholarship to a Central Louisiana student majoring in music.

Then, later in the month on February 26, the young singers of the Shreveport Opera who visited Alexandria in September for the Rapides Symphony Orchestra’s Pops on the River will return to give a program of opera arias and Broadway show tunes. Called A Little Night Music, the Shreveport Opera’s second performance in Central Louisiana this season will be right at home in Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center.

Be sure to catch all of these great occasions for classical music lovers, and follow MusicCentral for even more over the months to come.

JSH 15.01.21

About Jackson. Jackson Harmeyer is a music historian and composer. He is a graduate of the Louisiana Scholars’ College – Louisiana’s designated honors college – where he completed an undergraduate thesis entitled “Learning from the Past: The Influence of Johann Sebastian Bach upon the Soviet Composers.” He has followed classical music around the world, attending the BachFest Leipzig in Germany, Colorado’s Aspen Music Festival, and many concerts across Louisiana and Texas. Resident in Alexandria, Jackson works with the Arts Council of Central Louisiana as Series Director of the Abendmusik Alexandria chamber music series. He also writes the program notes for the Rapides Symphony Orchestra. As his day job, Jackson serves as Operations Manager of TicketCentral.

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