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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Concert showcases UA musicians

Four musicians in the UA School of Music will perform at the 38th Annual President’s Concert this Saturday and Sunday.

The featured soloists, Greg Guenther, a baritone, Brian Hicks, a saxophonist, pianist Elena Miraztchiyska and violist Orquídea Guandique, will play with the Arizona Symphony Orchestra.

The final four were chosen from the President’s Concerto Competition out of 28 musicians.

Ingvi Kallen, information specialist at the School of Music, said a competitive concert  is “”traditional”” of every music school.

Guenther, who began his doctoral program in vocal performance at the UA in 2008, said he is nervous and excited about the concert because “”it’s not every day you get to perform with an orchestra.””

“”It involves so many people working with (you) to ensure you have a great show,”” Guenther said.

Guenther grew up with a musical family and has formally studied music for the last 11 years.

Miraztchiyska, a Bulgarian native who debuted with the Bulgarian Chamber Orchestra at age 12, will perform a piano solo.

She has also performed as a concerto soloist with the Varna Opera Theatre Philharmonic Orchestra, Sofia State, University of Nevada, Las Vegas Symphony and Chamber Orchestras.

Hicks said he picked up the saxophone a year after attempting to play the trumpet, which he deemed too difficult.

“”The saxophone was easy,”” Hicks said. He has now been playing for 20 years.  

Hicks said he is nervous for his performance because it is the first time he will play with an orchestra. Hicks has played with prominent acts such as The Temptations, the Glenn Miller Orchestra, Linda Ronstadt and Diahann Carroll.

Guandique, principle violist for the Arizona Symphony Orchestra, originally began playing the violin at age eight and switched to viola eight years ago.

Guandique said she switched because she didn’t want to play the violin anymore, which her parents had picked for her, but she didn’t want to stop playing altogether.

She recently performed a viola solo with the UA Philharmonic Orchestra and appeared as soloist with Sons of Orpheus, a male Tucson choir.

“”I hope to get a lot of involvement from the community,”” Guandique said, referring to students and others. She said she hopes they get as many people as possible.

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