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Special Concerts Inaugurate Bowdoin's New Recital Hall Beginning May 4

Story posted April 20, 2007

Festivities marking the opening of Bowdoin College's new Studzinski Recital Hall will kick off Friday, May 4, 2007, in the hall's Kanbar Auditorium with a concert boasting performances by Bowdoin student groups along with international and local guest artists.

The Bowdoin Chamber Choir performed recently for the first time on the stage of Studzinski Recital Hall. The performance was part of an informal concert that allowed acousticians to "tune the hall" in advance of opening.

The inaugural classical concert, to be given Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, May 4, 5, and 6, at 7:30 p.m., will feature performances by Bowdoin's Chamber Choir, Concert Band, and Orchestra, as well as Igor Stravinsky's Les Noces performed by the Bowdoin Chorus, soloists from the Nevsky Vocal Ensemble of St. Petersburg, Russia, and dancers from the Portland Ballet.

For this concert, Chorus Director Anthony Antolini '63 created a new arrangement of Stravinsky's multi-media masterpiece Les Noces (Svadebka in Russian; The Village Wedding in English) to accommodate both instrumentalists and dancers.

Stravinsky's final version of Les Noces was scored for four grand pianos and six percussionists. Antolini's arrangement reduces the pianos to two and moves some of the music of the other two pianos to electric keyboards. He did research on the five extant versions of the work last summer at the Paul Sacher Institute in Basel, Switzerland, where the Stravinsky manuscripts are archived. Read more...

Learn More About Stravinsky
Igor Stravinsky (from the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division [Rep. No. 32392]).

Bowdoin will host a Stravinsky forum with noted scholars on Monday, May 7, at 2:30 p.m. in Gibson Hall, Tillotson Room. The forum will feature renowned Stravinsky specialists Margarita Mazo from Ohio State University and Stephen Walsh from the University of Cardiff in the U.K., who will speak about the historical background of Les Noces. The forum is open to the public free of charge. No tickets or reservations required.

"This is the most ambitious musical adventure I have ever attempted with the Bowdoin Chorus," says Antolini. "Yet it seemed fitting to stage something so monumental for the opening of a gorgeous new recital hall."

Les Noces will be performed under the Antolini's direction; the original choreography is by Nell Green.

Also featured on the concert program is Fantasy on Bowdoin Songs by Francis Kayali performed by the Bowdoin Concert Band, directed by John P. Morneau. Kayali, a member of the Bowdoin Class of 2001, is currently pursuing a doctorate in composition at the University of Southern California.

The Orchestra, conducted by Roland Vazquez, will perform Beethoven's Consecration of the House — an overture first performed in 1822 at the reopening of a renovated theater in Vienna.

The Chamber Choir's performance of Orlando diLasso's Canta giorgia, under Robert Greenlee, rounds out the program.

The concerts will be performed in Studzinski Recital Hall, Kanbar Auditorium (the former Curtis Pool building, located at the heart of the Bowdoin College campus), and are open to the public free of charge. Seating is limited. Call 207-725-3433 for more information about reserving tickets.

The weekend of inaugural concerts will continue Saturday and Sunday, May 5 and 6, at 4 p.m. with jazz and world music. Performers include the Polar Jazz Big Band, jazz ensembles, Middle Eastern Ensemble, and World Music Ensemble. More Arts & Culture events...

To learn more about Bowdoin's music program, contact the Department of Music at 207-725-3747.

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