LSM Newswire

Monday, July 13, 2009

NACO: July 23-26: Orchestras in the Park

National Arts Centre Orchestra & NCC / News Release

Featuring three NAC Orchestra concerts and one by the Orchestre de la francophonie canadienne

Ottawa, Canada – The National Arts Centre (NAC) together with the National Capital Commission (NCC) present the third summer of Orchestras in the Park from Thursday, July 23 to Sunday, July 26, a glorious open-air festival in LeBreton Flats Park of four free evening concerts at 7:30 p.m. The first three concerts feature the National Arts Centre Orchestra (“Classics and Kuertis” on July 23; “Opera Under the Stars” on July 24; and Natalie MacMaster on July 25), and the final concert features the Orchestre de la francophonie canadienne (“Beethoven’s Fifths” on July 26). Admittance is free and no tickets are required. Each concert is approximately 90 minutes without intermission. The NCC is offering a free shuttle from Tunney’s Pasture as well as free valet bike parking (details at the end).

Activities on site include a free Kids Zone introducing children to music one hour before each performance. Orchestras in the Park also offers the opportunity to participate in a Photo Contest for a chance to win prizes. Audience members are invited to submit photos representing their experiences while attending the 2009 festival. (Details and rules are online at the NAC website.)

Orchestras in the Park begins on Thursday, July 23 with “Classics and Kuertis”, featuring renowned Ottawa favourite Anton Kuerti at the piano and his son Julian Kuerti (assistant conductor of the Boston Symphony, and an alumnus of the NAC Conductors Program) leading the the NAC Orchestra in Mendelssohn’s Piano Concerto No. 1. This concert also features trumpet player Amy Horvey, this year’s recipient of the Richard Li Young Artist Chair, performing the Hummel Trumpet Concerto. The younger Kuerti will also lead the Orchestra in Mozart’s Overture to Cosi fan tutte and Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8.

For “Opera Under the Stars” on Friday, July 24, conductor Jean-Marie Zeitouni leads the NAC Orchestra, soprano Erin Wall, tenor Antonio Figueroa, and baritone James Westman – three sensational Canadian singers – in favourite arias from Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and The Magic Flute, Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette and Faust and Verdi’s La Traviata, joined by the Opera Lyra Ottawa Chorus directed by Laurence Ewashko.

On Saturday, July 25, the electrifying Natalie MacMaster, Cape Breton’s fiddling, step-dancing sensation guarantees to have the audience on its feet cheering her and the NAC Orchestra in a night of Celtic delights with Jean-Marie Zeitouni once again on the podium. Natalie is joined by her pianist Mac Morin and drummer Vince Ditrich in favourites such as Strathspey & Reels, Three Jigs, Jesse’s Polka, and Anniversary Waltz, plus a classical vs. fiddle face-off titled “Bach – Devil’s Dream”.

Orchestras in the Park concludes on Sunday, July 26, when the Orchestre de la francophonie canadienne takes over the outdoor stage in “Beethoven’s Fifths” led by founding Music Director Jean-Philippe Tremblay. Pianist Hong Xu, the 2006 Laureate of the Honens International Piano Competition performs Beethoven’s “Emperor” Piano Concerto No. 5 and Tremblay leads the Orchestra in Beethoven’s mighty Fifth Symphony!

A special Kids Zone prior to each Orchestras in the Park concert starting at 6:30 p.m. allows children and their families to explore the world of music. There will be live demonstrations by young string players and roving performance ensembles, plus an instrument “petting zoo”, complementary reading material from the Ottawa Public Library, and crafts tables for colouring.

Concertgoers are reminded to pack their lawn chairs or blankets for this event. Limited onsite parking is available; the public is encouraged to use public transit. There is also a free shuttle service from Tunney’s Pasture starting at 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, and 6:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, as well as following each concert. As an additional green measure, the NCC also offers a valet bike parking service where cyclists can check their bikes for free in a supervised parking area.

There is a drop off spot and reserved area for people with disabilities. For those with hearing impairment, assistive listening devices will be available at the First Aid tent, located at the south entrance of the park, off of Wellington Street.

LeBreton Flats Park, a 3.6 hectare area between the Canadian War Museum and Wellington Street offers spectacular views and is the biggest gathering site for cultural events in the Capital.


Thursday, July 23

Classics and Kuertis

National Arts Centre Orchestra

Julian Kuerti, conductor

Anton Kuerti, piano

Amy Horvey, trumpet (Richard Li Young Artist Chair)

MOZART Cosi fan tutte: Overture

HUMMEL Trumpet Concerto in E-flat major

MENDELSSOHN Piano Concerto No. 1 in G minor

DVORAK Symphony No. 8 in G major, Op. 88

Friday, July 24

Opera Under the Stars

National Arts Centre Orchestra

Jean-Marie Zeitouni, conductor

Erin Wall, soprano

Antonio Figueroa, tenor

James Westman, baritone

MOZART The Marriage of Figaro: Overture

MOZART The Marriage of Figaro: E Susanna non vien - Dove Sono (Wall)

MOZART The Marriage of Figaro: Hai gia vinta la Causa – Vedro (Westman)

MOZART Don Giovanni: Giovinette che fatte all'amore (Wall, Westman, Chorus)

MOZART Don Giovanni: Il Mio (Figueroa)

MOZART Don Giovanni: La Ci darem la mano (Wall, Westman)

MOZART The Magic Flute: Overture

MOZART The Magic Flute: Dies Bildnis (Figueroa)

MOZART The Magic Flute: Finale: Die Strahlen der Sonne (Westman, Chorus)

GOUNOD Roméo et Juliette: Overture-Prologue: Vérone vit jadis deux familles rivales (Chorus)

GOUNOD Roméo et Juliette: Duet Madrigal: Ange adorable (Wall, Figueroa)

GOUNOD Faust: Jewel Song (Wall)

GOUNOD Faust: Ainsi que la brise légère (Wall, Figueroa, James)

VERDI La Traviata: Un Di felice (Wall, Figueroa)

VERDI La Traviata: Gypsy chorus (Chorus)

VERDI La Traviata: Di Provenza il mar, il suol (Westman)

VERDI La Traviata: Libiamo Drinking Song

Saturday, July 25

Natalie MacMaster and the NAC Orchestra

National Arts Centre Orchestra

Jean-Marie Zeitouni, conductor

Natalie MacMaster, fiddle

Mac Morin, piano

Vince Ditrich, drums

Sunday, July 26

Beethoven’s Fifths

Orchestre de la francophonie canadienne

Jean-Philippe Tremblay, conductor

Hong Xu, piano (Honens Competition Laureate)

BEETHOVEN Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major, Op. 73 “Emperor”

BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67

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