Music Department serves up a symphony of talent tonight

York University’s Music Department serves up a symphony of talent tonight at 7:30pm as the York University Symphony Orchestra takes centre stage with a Concert of Soloists featuring some of the department’s finest young musicians. Then on March 30 at 3pm, the York University Wind Symphony joins guest artists, the York University Percussion Ensemble, in performing an exhilarating roster of band music.

Both concerts are in the Tribute Communities Recital Hall, 112 Accolade East Building, Keele campus, and are part of the third annual York Fine Arts Festival.

The York Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Mark Chambers, turns the spotlight onto soloists – York students who took top honours in the Music Department’s concerto competition earlier in the term. Soprano Joyce Goh sings the aria "Saper Vorreste" from Verdi’s opera Un Ballo in Maschera; Hannah Kwon and Arvid Neumann play the first movement of Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante in E flat major; Thu Van offers the first movement of Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor; and Jenny Xia performs the first movement of Mozart’s Piano Concerto in C minor K. 491.

Right: Mark Chambers

Bizet’s Carmen Suite and Mussorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain round out the program. These two orchestral favourites feature numerous solos from the wind section, turning the entire program into a showcase where soloists can shine.

The York Wind Symphony, conducted by William Thomas and associate conductor James Macdonald, is joined by the York Percussion Ensemble in a concert featuring Ira Hearshen’s Symphony on Themes of John Phillip Sousa. Sousa’s own The Fairest of the Fair is also on the program, along with Eric Whitacre’s Noisy Wheels of Joy, Frank Tichelli’s Cajun Folk Songs, Bizet’s Carmen Fantasy arranged by Eiji Suzuki, Steven Bryant’s Dusk and Percy Grainger’s The Immovable Do.

Another classical instrumental concert taking place under the York Fine Arts Festival banner is a free midday performance of the Baroque Ensemble on March 31, from 12:30 to 1:30pm, in the Tribute Communities Recital Hall.

The Faculty of Fine Arts at York spotlights its resident talent in a three-week festival packed with 40 exciting and entertaining events, running until March 31. The York Fine Arts Festival features exhibitions and films, theatre and dance productions, and a wide variety of classical, jazz and world music concerts.

Admission for the each concert is $15 and $5 for students. For tickets, call the Box Office at 416-736-5888 or visit the Web site.

For more information, visit the Fine Arts Festival Web site.