Good afternoon friends,
This is my first blog entry to the newly revamped Kansas City Civic Orchestra (KCCO) Web site. I hope that you will take some time to look around at the historical photos, our new short video documentary, and of course our 51st season schedule! It looks to be another great year for music in the greater Kansas City area.
Our opening season concert will take place this October 24. It is a very exciting concert as it features all three of my most favorite composers: Wagner, Tchaikovsky, and of course, Brahms. I love to program seasons. Of course a conductor looks at budget, personnel, venue, etc., but picking a program is a lot of fun and gets me looking at repertoire from all genres, sizes, “popular” and less frequently performed works.
The Wagner, Die Meistersinger Prelude, I chose due to its massive use of the orchestra. It’s been a long summer, and I wanted to use the most players as possible to let our listeners see and hear how wonderful the size of the KCCO has grown.
Symphony No. 2 by Brahms is probably one of the most popular of his four symphonic works. Aside from it being just long enough in duration to program other works of substantial size, to a wonderful key of D major – Brahms really shows off his lyrical and beautiful writing in his second symphony. Plain and simple – it’s a wonderful work – beautiful sounds mixed with a triumphant finale movement.
Our featured soloist for this concert is a wonderful cellist, Ruslan Biryukov. He will be performing Tchaikovsky’s charming Rococo Variations for Cello and Orchestra. This work is comprised as a theme and variation form. It is quite easy to follow musically, and the cello technique is demonstrated with a sort of “Russian/Viennese Class.” Without a doubt you WILL enjoy Mr. Biryukov’s playing. I encourage you to bring your cellist friends to hear his performance.
THE INTERNET: What do I mean? All of the pieces listed above can be observed visually and audibly from a wonderful site called www.YouTube.com – I am not ashamed to say that I am completely addicted to this site. You can observe some of music’s most wonderful performances as well as other postings from all other musical organizations. I urge you to give a listen.
Well, I must be off. The KCCO has a lot of rehearsing to do. I look forward to writing many more blog entries, and look forward to seeing you all at our concerts. Stay up to speed on our Web site – and always it is great pleasure for me and the members of the Kansas City Civic Orchestra to bring you our music.