October 4, 2010

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra Opens Williams Center’s Chamber Music Series Oct. 13

Garrick Ohlsson, courtesy of Kacper Pempel

The Orpheus Chamber Orchestra launches its 24th season at the Williams Center for the Arts with world-renowned pianist Garrick Ohlsson at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 13. The concert is the first performance in this year’s Chamber Music series.

Tickets are free for Lafayette students, $6 for students at LVAIC schools, $5 for faculty and staff, and $29 for the public. They can be obtained by calling the Williams Center box office at (610) 330-5009.

The concert will include Beethoven’s towering Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major. According to The Washington Post, “Ohlsson merged a luxuriant musical imagination with an absolute technical command. His playing was at once big and bold, solemn and poetic.” Ohlsson is the first American to win first prize in the International Chopin Competition in 1972 in Warsaw.

Recognized internationally as a phenomenal chamber orchestra, Orpheus takes a unique approach toward chamber music in that the ensemble works without a conductor. It is a self-governing organization, making the repertory and interpretive decisions ordinarily assumed by a conductor through a collaborative effort.

Orpheus has received numerous distinctions and awards, including a 2001 Grammy Award for Shadow Dances: Stravinsky Miniatures, a 1999 Grammy Award for its jazz-inspired Ravel and Gershwin collaboration with Herbie Hancock, a 1998 Grammy nomination for its recording of Mozart piano concerti with Richard Goode, and the 1998 “Ensemble of the Year” award by Musical America.

Other performances in the 2010-11 Chamber Music series will be the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Nov. 10, $18; two other appearances by Orpheus with soprano Kate Royal, Dec. 3, $27, and violinist Vadim Gluzman, Jan. 28, $27; Piffaro with King’s Noyse and soprano Ellen Hargis, March 9, $18; and the Venice Baroque Orchestra, April 16, $22. A $125 subscription package for the six events, a savings of 11 percent off the single ticket price, is available through Oct. 13.

WWFM, the Classical Network of Mercer County Community College, serves as the 2010-2011 media sponsor for the Williams Center Chamber Music series.

The 2010–2011 Performance Series at Lafayette College is supported in part by gifts from Friends of the Williams Center for the Arts; by provisions of the Josephine Chidsey Williams Endowment, the J. Mahlon and Grace Buck Fund, the Croasdale Fund, the Dr. Aaron O. Litwak ’42 Fund, the Class of ’73 Fund, the Alan and Wendy Pesky Artist-in-Residence Program, the James Bradley Fund, and the Ed Brunswick Jazz Fund; and by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, and National Dance Project/New England Foundation for the Arts. Special thanks to the F.M. Kirby Foundation for its sustaining support.

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