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American Spectacular

American Spectacular

10/25/2014   7:30 pm

Centennial Performing Arts Center

Presented by The Village at MeridianThe_Village_at_Meridian

Featuring great American music, including Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue,” with soloist Dr. Mark Hansen of Boise State University on the world’s only blue Steinway piano. What a way to kick off our milestone season!

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Special Guest

Dr. Mark Hansenhansen-201x300

Mark R Hansen is Professor of Music and Chair of the Department of Music. Dr. Hansen performs as both solo and collaborative pianist, having concertized abroad and throughout the United States. Research interest in Catalan piano literature and pedagogical methods inspires regular programming of Spanish composers’ works in performances. His broad musical interests also provide opportunities where he enjoy choral conducting, organ performance, and the composition and publication of sacred choral music.

Mark’s teachers and coaches have included Joseph Banowetz, Alicia de Lorrocha, Paul Pollei, and Gladys Gladstone. He has played in the masterclasses of Lili Kraus, Adele Marcus, Illana Vered, Karl Schnabel, Joanne Baker, and Reid Nibley. An experienced pedagogue himself, successes of his own students are numerous – many now hold faculty positions and prominent national and international institutions and have completed advanced degrees with some of the world’s most respected pianists.

Boise Philharmonic Masters Chorale BPMC Picture 2

The Boise Philharmonic Master Chorale is an auditioned chorus of more than 100 singer volunteers, which has provided the greater Boise area with choral master works since 1975. The inaugural concert that year was performance of Handel’s Messiah with the Boise Philharmonic Orchestra!

In addition to performing with the Philharmonic, the Chorale has also collaborated with other area arts groups including the Boise Baroque Orchestra, Ballet Idaho, Idaho Dance Theatre, Opera Idaho Children’s Chorus, Treasure Valley Concert Band, Boise State University Symphonic Orchestra, as well as other local choruses. The chorale has performed numerous times for Boise Music Week and has invited area high school singers to participate as part of an educational outreach effort

The Chorale is lead by Dr. James Jirak who is in his seventeenth year as Artistic Director and conductor of the BPMC. The ensemble rehearses on Monday evenings from 7:00 until 9:00 at the Esther Simplot Performing Arts Academy.

Special Guest

Combined Choirs from Centennial and Capitol High School

The Rhapsody Piano

Crafted in tribute to the 100th anniversary of the birth of Steinway Artist George Gershwin, this art case piano celebrates the creation of George Gershwin’s first classical symphonic work, “Rhapsody in Blue, “ and its premiere performance in New York City in 1924. The piano features maple veneer dyed in brilliant midnight blue, as well as over 400 mother-of-pearl stars that have been hand cut into the piano and inlaid in random fashion. The plate is gilded in silver, evoking the sophistication and style of the 1920s, and reflects the glamorous and elegant American art deco furniture style of that time.  “Rhapsody’s” music desk is a hand-carved silhouette of New York’s skyline.  “Rhapsody” was offered in a limited edition of twenty-four Steinway Model D (concert grand) and Steinway Model B handcrafted instruments.

Thank you to the Boise State University Department of Music for their generosity in making this amazing instrument available to the Meridian Symphony for tonight’s performance.




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