Music, Culture, and Storytelling Intersect at Wheeling Symphony Orchestra’s Festival and Concert

March 6, 2018 5:15 pm
Published by
Leave your thoughts

(Wheeling, WV) Wheeling Symphony Orchestra (WSO) announces the East Meets West Festival and Concert, conducted by Music Director André Raphel, featuring GRAMMY nominated violinist, Jennifer Frautschi. The festival will feature free events: The Art and Tradition of Storytelling Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at 6:30 pm at the Waddington Room in the Oglebay Mansion Museum, Wheeling, WV, and A Musical Journey through Chinese and Western Culture Thursday, March 15, 2018 at 6:30 pm at the Stifel Fine Arts Center, Wheeling, WV.  The concert will be held Friday, March 16, 2018 at 7:30 pm at the Capitol Theatre, Wheeling, WV.

The festival week begins with The Art and Tradition of Storytelling featuring Wei Wei, associate concertmaster of the Wheeling Symphony, and Marc Harshman, poet laureate of West Virginia.  Marc is the seventh poet laureate of West Virginia and recently published his fourteenth children’s title, FALLINGWATER, co-written with Anna Smucker, about Frank Lloyd Wright’s iconic house, which has already been named a Junior Library Guild selection and has been tapped as an Amazon non-fiction children’s book of the month.  His most recent full-length collection of poems, BELIEVE WHAT YOU CAN, was published by The Vandalia Press of West Virginia University and was the winner of the 2017 Weatherford Award from the Appalachian Studies Association.  Mr. Harshman holds degrees from Bethany College, Yale University Divinity School, and the University of Pittsburgh, as well as recent honorary doctorates from West Liberty University and Bethany College.  He was born and raised in Randolph County, Indiana and has lived his adult life in northern West Virginia.

The festival continues with A Musical Journey through Chinese and Western Culture, featuring Lu-Han Li, pipa, and Jennifer Frautschi, violin.  Two-time GRAMMY nominee and Avery Fisher career grant recipient Ms. Frautschi has garnered worldwide acclaim as an adventurous musician with a remarkably wide-ranging repertoire.  Her discography includes the Stravinsky Violin Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by Robert Craft, and two GRAMMY-nominated recordings with the Fred Sherry Quartet.  Born in Pasadena, California, Ms. Frautschi was a student of Robert Lipsett at the Colburn School; she also attended Harvard, NEC, and Juilliard, where she studied with Robert Mann. She performs on a 1722 Antonio Stradivarius violin known as the “ex-Cadiz,” on generous loan from a private American foundation.

“The East Meets West Festival week will be an exciting presentation of events which explore cultural traditions and musical connections between the Far East and Western music,” says André Raphel, Music Director and moderator of the festival.  “These events will feature diverse artists and focus on the art of storytelling, part of a unique tradition in West Virginia.”  The festival and its events are free and open to the public.

On Friday, March 16, 2018, the Wheeling Symphony will perform the East Meets West concert.  This masterful program fuses the music and culture of East and West traditions. The evening features the percussive sweeping rhythm of Tan Dun’s Symphonic Poems of 3 Notes, violinist Jennifer Frautschi performing Beethoven’s lyrical and dramatic Violin Concerto with the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, and the dazzling, colorful orchestration in Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade.

“The program on March 16 features music by Chinese composer Tan Dun, Beethoven, and Rimsky-Korskaov.  Well-known as a composer of film scores such as “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” Dun’s music has an immediate and visceral appeal.  Ms. Frautschi makes her Wheeling debut and it will be a pleasure to welcome this GRAMMY nominated artist,” says André Raphel.  “I’m especially looking forward to Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade “Arabian Nights” which rounds out the program and features members of the orchestra in notable solo passages connected to the story.”

Prior to the concert, patrons can purchase a pre-show, prix fixe dinner, catered by Rocco Basil in the Capitol Theatre Ballroom starting at 5:30 pm. Patrons can also join us for a free “Concert Talk” at 6:30 pm where Maestro Raphel and other guests offer an informative and intriguing look at the story behind the music to be presented that evening.  Immediately following the performance, attendees can attend a free wine and cheese post-show reception with Maestro Raphel and other members of the symphony orchestra.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.