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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Tucson Symphony Orchestra debuts season with Russian opus

    This weekend, the Tucson Symphony Orchestra aims to kick off its 2013-2014 season with a bang with “Victorious Shostakovich,” featuring a symphony the orchestra has never performed.

    The orchestra will perform Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 7, “Leningrad,” along with a performance by Grammy-nominated violinist Jennifer Frautschi.

    The concert opens Friday at 8 p.m., which marks the opening of the Classic Series at the Tucson Music Hall. The season will run until the middle of May 2014.

    Frautschi will open with a performance of Alexander Glazunov’s Violin Concerto, a contemporary and uplifting violin concerto piece.

    Andrew Birgensmith, the orchestra’s president and chief executive officer, said the orchestra wants to leave an impression with the symphony they’ve chosen.

    “Orchestras dream of playing this piece,” he said. “We thought this would wake up the audience and announce that the season is beginning. We discussed how to end summer with a bang and announce how the Tucson Symphony Orchestra season is starting this weekend.”

    To celebrate their season debut, the orchestra will host its Just For Kids Opening Festival, which will see the orchestra’s wind quintet performing “Pinocchio.” The orchestra will also host the Tucson Food Truck Roundup and a music and pet festival.

    Birgensmith said he is looking forward to Friday’s performance, adding that the piece holds a strong musical history, having been played in the city of Leningrad, Russia — now St. Petersburg — during the Nazi regime of World War II. The city had been captured by troops for a year, and in memory of this, 15 musicians who survived the war front performed the symphony in the city.

    “[Symphony No. 7, ‘Leningrad’] is a treat because I’ve never played it before, it requires an incredible amount of stamina and pacing,” said Lauren Roth, the orchestra’s concert master.
    As for the concert, Roth said she is looking forward to playing with Frautschi.

    “I enjoy getting to meet and work with talented musicians and play some of the greatest symphonic repertoire there is,” Roth said. “It’s always been my dream. I’m living my dream.”

    What: “Victorious Shostakovich,” Tucson Symphony Orchestra season debut
    When: Friday, 8 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.
    Where: Tucson Music Hall, 260 S. Church Ave.
    Admission: $27-$80 general; $5 student

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