BGSU Festival Series redraws musical limits

Turtle Island String Quartet

BOWLING GREEN, O.—Concert-goers at Bowling Green State University’s 2011-12 Festival Series will expand their musical boundaries with performances ranging from inspired improvisation to classical formality.

All concerts begin at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free pre-concert talks about each evening’s performance begin at 7:15 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall.

The series gets under way Sept. 23 with the Turtle Island String Quartet, winner of two recent Grammys for Best Classical Crossover. Fusing jazz and classical, the group has redefined American chamber music over the past 25 years and has recordings on Telarc, Koch, Chandos and Windham Hill Jazz . A Turtle Island concert can encompass world music, rock, jazz and bluegrass.

On Nov. 19, the New York Voices will bring the warmth of their intricate harmonies to the Kobacker Hall stage. The Grammy Award-winning group is renowned for its excellence in jazz and the art of group singing, sometimes infusing Brazilian, R & B, classical and pop influences into the mix. New York Voices has made guest appearances with the Boston Pops and a number of influential jazz artists such as Bobby McFerrin and Nancy Wilson.

A creative collaboration between the Toledo Symphony Orchestra and the BGSU Wind Symphony on Jan. 19 will yield the Roman Carnival Spectacular. Conducted by Jeffrey Pollock, the program will include Corigliano’s “Circus Maximus” along with Berlioz’s  “Roman Carnival Overture” and Khachaturian’s “Spartacus Ballet Suite.” The Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps will bring the evening to a thrilling conclusion with Respighi’s “Pines of Rome.”

Fans of pianist Christopher O’Riley’s “From the Top” show on National Public Radio and TV can see him in person at his Feb. 11 Festival Series concert. From his groundbreaking transcriptions of Radiohead pieces to his tours with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and performances with such leading orchestras as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, O’Riley delivers a repertoire filled with musical surprises.

The final program of the series, on March 28, will include BGSU faculty member Jacqueline Leclair. In addition to teaching, she is the oboist with the cutting edge classical group Alarm Will Sound. The 20-member band is committed to innovative performances and recordings of today’s music. They have established a reputation for performing demanding music with energetic skill. Their performances have been described as “equal parts exuberance, nonchalance and virtuosity” by the London Financial Times and as “a triumph of ensemble playing” by the San Francisco Chronicle. The New York Times says Alarm Will Sound is “the future of classical music” and “the very model of modern music chamber band.”

Season tickets are now on sale and range from $138 to $60, for students. Single and group tickets will be available Sept. 16 for Turtle Island String Quartet and Sept. 26 for the remaining series performances.

Free parking is available in Lots C, 16, 1 and 18.

Season series tickets may be ordered by calling the Moore Musical Arts Center Box Office at 419-372-8171 or 1-800-589-2224. Tickets may be purchased with Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express.

The box office, located in the center, is open noon-6 p.m. Monday-Friday.

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(Posted August 25, 2011 )