LSM Newswire

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Portland Symphony Orchestra Welcomes Mandolin Virtuoso Chris Thile to Merrill Auditorium March 28

PORTLAND, Maine –The Portland Symphony Orchestra (PSO) is proud to present the New England premiere of a new concerto by acclaimed mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile at the upcoming Sunday Classical concert on Sunday, March 28 at 2:30 p.m. in Merrill Auditorium, 20 Myrtle Street in Portland.

This Sunday Classical concert is part of Mandolin Madness, a weekend-long collaboration of Portland Ovations, Portland Symphony Orchestra and Space Gallery. For details and special offers, visit

Scott Terrell, music director of the Lexington (KY) Philharmonic, is the guest conductor for the concert, which opens with Aaron Copland’s Appalachian Spring in its original version for 13 instruments, followed by a late-Romantic work by Arnold Schoenberg, the powerful Verklärte Nacht, Op. 4 (“Transfigured Night”) for string orchestra.

This matinee performance will conclude with Thile’s Mandolin Concerto (Ad astra per alia porci), co-commissioned by the PSO. This work has thrilled critics including the Denver Post

Thile is widely regarded as one of the most interesting and inventive musicians of his generation. He played with the band Nickel Creek for fifteen years, recording three albums and receiving a Grammy in 2002. He also has released four solo albums and one album with double bass virtuoso Edgar Meyer. Additionally, Thile has collaborated with a pantheon of bluegrass innovators including Bela Fleck, Dolly Parton, the Dixie Chicks, Jerry Douglas, and Sam Bush. Thile will be performing with his current band, Punch Brothers, at Merrill Auditorium on Friday, March 26.

Sponsored by Bath Savings Trust Company, the concert begins at 2:30 p.m., preceded by a Concert Conversation at 1:15 p.m. and followed by a PostConcert Q&A with the artists. A live recorded broadcast of the concert can be heard on Maine Public Broadcasting Network on Wednesday, April 14.

Thile’s Mandolin Concerto is funded in part by a grant from the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tickets range from $20-$70 and are available through PortTix at (207) 842-0800 or at Phone and internet orders are subject to $6-per-ticket handling fees. Tickets may also be purchased in person at the box office at 20 Myrtle St., Monday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m.

The PSO’s 2009-10 season is sponsored by IDEXX Laboratories. For complete season information, including artist biographies; program notes; and Online Insights, provided with support from season Enrichment Sponsor Fairpoint Communications; visit
who called Thile an “up-and-coming classical composer with almost unlimited potential,” and his concerto “nothing short of astounding.”


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