In just two weeks, the Mercyhurst Civic Orchestra will be presenting its “Concert of Soloists.” The concert will be May 6 at 4 p.m. in Walker Recital Hall.
The featured soloists will be high school student Sadie Anderson, senior Vocal Performance major Jeanette Fournier and junior Composition major Christian Goulione.
These soloists were the winners of the Concerto/Aria competition held in January.
They performed their pieces for an unbiased group of judges.
The soloists who were chosen were the ones who, in the words of Jonathan Moser, conductor and musical director of the Civic Orchestra, “presented the most polished overall performances.”
Anderson, who comes from Jamestown, New York, will be performing “Allegro” of Samuel Barber’s Violin Concerto, Op. 14.
When asked about her part in the concert, Anderson shared what she is looking forward to most in the performance.
“It’s special to play the piece with the orchestra. I’ve performed the piece with a piano a few times, but it’s definitely a different and a rare opportunity to play with an orchestra and full instrumentation,” Anderson said.
Fournier will be singing “Ariette des Ännchen” from “Der Freischütz” by Carl Maria von Weber.
Fournier said, “I was drawn to this aria by the character, Ännchen, because she’s so funny and vibrant.”
Fournier’s preparation for the role was impressive.
When asked to share her creative process, she said, “I learned and translated my German, and spoke the text repeatedly in order to get a feel for the language and the character. I also worked a lot on technique so that I’ll be able to sing loud enough to be heard over the orchestra.”
Goulione will play the “Allegro” movement of Piano Concerto No. 23 in A major, K. 488. by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
Goulione has been working on his piece for nearly a year now and is looking forward to performing with a full orchestra as accompaniment.
“It’s exciting to hear how all the parts in the orchestra add to what I’m playing on the piano.
“This concerto is a work that I’ve always been a fan of,” Goulione said.
“After learning the piece, I would say my biggest challenges were to capture the various characters and personalities that Mozart wrote into each theme.”
In addition to accompanying the performances by the soloists, the Civic Orchestra will perform Symphony No. 4, D. 417 (Tragic) by Franz Schubert.
Moser chose the Schubert for a variety of reasons.
“I always want to feature the orchestra and this is a wonderful piece that is incredibly lyrical, as is all Schubert, the King of song,” he said. “But I also knew that we would have very little time between our performances with the D’Angelo Opera Theater productions of Rigoletto and our final concert, so our symphony also needed to be of a scale that we could achieve in a short amount of time.
“This symphony is just perfect for both these goals,” he said.
General admission tickets are $5, and tickets for Mercyhurst students and staff and children age 12 and younger are $2.