Classical Series – Classic Civic

Felix Mendelssohn
Felix Mendelssohn

Saturday, March 8,  2014

7:30 p.m..
(pre-concert talk, 6:45pm)

Atonement Lutheran Church (directions)
9948 Metcalf Ave
Overland Park, KS 66212

  • Mozart: Sinfonia Concertante, Yu-Fang Chen, violin & David Kovac, viola
  • Weber: Concerto for Clarinet (Mvt 1), Debbie Allen, Principal Clarinet
  • Mendelssohn: Symphony No. 5 “Reformation”

Free – no tickets required!

April Yu-Fang Chen
April Yu-Fang Chen

April Yu-Fang Chen is the winner of the 2001 Commemorative Violin Competition of Professor Cuei-lun Dai competition, the 2005 Kansas City Medical Arts Symphony Concerto Competition, the 2007 Naftzger Competition, the 2009 UMKC Concerto/Aria competition and the Philharmonia of Greater Kansas City Concerto Competition. Ms. Chen is also a recipient of the 2008 Mui Phi Epsilon Scholarship Audition, and the 2008 and 2009 Kansas City Musical Club Fellowship. As a soloist, she has performed with the Academy of Taiwan Strings, the Kansas City Medical Arts Symphony, and the Philharmonia of Greater Kansas City, and UMKC Conservatory Orchestra.  As an enthusiastic performer of chamber music and orchestral music, Yu-Fang Chen has been invited by Mimir Chamber Music Festival, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Festival Symphony Orchestra, Taiwan Youth Orchestra, and National Symphony Orchestra and her performance career has taken her to Southeast Asia, Russia, South Africa, Estonia, German, Finland, France, and the United States. Ms. Chen is also a Doctor of Musical Arts candidate at UMKC Conservatory in violin under the tutelage of Benny Kim, and in viola with Scott Lee.

David Kovac
David Kovac

David Kovac started to play violin at the age of four and later, at the Janacek Conservatory in Ostrava, decided to play viola. Mr. Kovac received a scholarship to the Longy School of Music in Boston, where he completed his Bachelor of Music degree. In 1998, he received a Graduate Teaching Assistantships in chamber music and orchestra at the University of Massachusetts—Amherst. Mr. Kovac was the principal violist of the UMass orchestra and played with many other orchestras in the Boston area. In 2001 he received his Master of Music degree from UMass—Amherst. In 2002 Mr. Kovac was offered a Graduate Assistantship at the University of Missouri—Kansas City, where he was a member of the Graduate String Quartet and is pursuing a doctoral degree in viola performance. His principal teachers include Pavel Vitek, Michelle LaCourse, and Charles Treger. Mr. Kovac has taught at the Dana Hall School of Music in Wellesley and the Brattleboro Music Center in Vermont and is currently teaching at the UMKC Music and Dance Academy.

Debbie Allen
Debbie Allen

Debbie Allen began to practice clarinet in band class during elementary school. She later completed a Bachelor of Music Education degree at the University of Nebraska -Lincoln and a Master of Music Education degree from the University of Missouri -Kansas City. Clarinet teachers include Wesley Reist, John Ziegler and Patricia Huebner. Master classes with clarinet professionals include Elsa Ludwig-Verdehr, Ron Reuben and Richard Stoltzman.

Debbie is the Performing Arts Resource Specialist for the Shawnee Mission School District where she supports teachers and students in their musical pursuits. She served as bass clarinetist for the Lincoln and Omaha Symphonies 1978-1980. She has performed with the Overland Park Civic Band, the Overland Park Civic Orchestra and the Liberty Symphony. She has been a member of the Kansas City Civic Orchestra since 1990. In addition she has the pleasure of playing in pit orchestras for The Johnson County Barn Players, Music Theatre for Young People and Shawnee Mission Theatre in the Park. She currently plays on a Buffet R13 Vintage and uses a Vandoren M- 13/15 mouthpiece with Vandoren V12 clarinet reeds.

Conductor’s Corner – 55th Season

Christopher Kelts
Christopher Kelts, music director

Greetings friends of the Kansas City Civic Orchestra! As we ended our concert last April we immediately began working on our 55th Concert Season!

Our 55th season begins with a classic season opener. We will feature three works on this concert. Robert Johns, a native of Kansas and accomplished composer, will have his Concert Overture performed for the first time by the KCCO, making its second debut. We also welcome our guest soloist, Hyerim Jeon on cello, who will perform Lalo’s exciting Concerto for Cello and Orchestra. The evening will be capped off with one of music’s most popular works. I know very few people who don’t enjoy the music of Beethoven – so in the spirit of our love for his music, we will perform his Symphony No. 7, Op. 92 A major. Of course a pre-concert talk will take place at 6:45 p.m. You don’t want to miss this wonderful opening to our new season. October 12, 7:30 p.m., Atonement Lutheran Church.

KCCO has begun giving an annual pops concert. This season we will play themes of your favorite stage works in GIVE MY REGARDS: An Evening of Broadway! To accommodate for the popularity of this concert, and to reach as many of our friends and audience members, KCCO will hold two performances of this concert. Please join us, Friday, November 15 & Saturday, November 16 at 7:30 p.m. at Atonement Lutheran Church. Of course, if you can’t make one of these concerts – the show must go on!

March 8, 7:30 p.m. (Atonement Lutheran Church) is the performance date for our Classic Civic featuring the works of Mendelssohn, Mozart and Weber. We have a soloist-packed evening with Debbi Allen (KCCO Principal Clarinet) and the Sinfonia Concertante for violin and viola with Yu-Fang Chen and David Kovac. The evening closes with Mendelssohn’s famous Symphony No. 5 “The Reformation.” A pre-concert talk begins at 6:45 p.m.

Our season finale will happen on Saturday, April 26, 7:30 p.m., Atonement Lutheran Church – and before we all know we will close another season of the Kansas City Civic Orchestra! This concert is titled Tragedy to Transfiguration…the program will be deep and moving, for certain. The program will open with Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet Overture-Fantasy. The closing of the program will be Richard Strauss’ Death and Transfiguration – both pieces possess a great deal of emotion and brilliant orchestration. To offer a new sound, the strings and percussion of KCCO will perform Elegy in memory of Maurice Ravel, by David Diamond. A pre-concert talk begins at 6:45 p.m.

…OH I ALMOST FORGOT! Our annual SOUNDS OF THE SEASON will happen in December. You will have two opportunities to see this popular concert on Friday, December 13 and Saturday December 14 at Atonement Lutheran Church. Can you come to both? Of course! We wanted to make sure everyone had an opportunity to enjoy this fun, meaningful and joyous musical time of year. This year the orchestra will offer a twist on a classic. With guest ensemble, Washburn University Jazz Band, under the direction of Craig Treinen, the KCCO will perform Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite alongside Duke Ellington’s adaptation. A not to miss evening!

As you know, the Kansas City Civic Orchestra continues to give concerts at no charge, and through some generous patrons and grants, we are able to continue to do so. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention how important your presence is at our concerts. I hope that your experiences hearing our orchestra is wonderful – and if you are able to give a monetary gift – we appreciate that side of your patronage as well. Our wish is to continue with this mission for many more years to come. (Remember, KCCO is a non-for-profit, so all donations are tax deductible).

Come and hear the Kansas City Civic Orchestra. Stay connected through our Facebook page or our website. I look forward to seeing you, and I know you are looking forward to hearing us in our 55th concert season!

–  Christopher Kelts, Music Director