The classical music calendar is covered with notes in Howard County this weekend. That's because there are several local concerts scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, March 17 and 18. Much as music lovers might like to be in two places at the same time, they'll have to make some tough choices when it comes to choosing between overlapping events.
It's not just any busy weekend, of course, because many people will be celebratingSt. Patrick's Dayon Saturday. This festive day happens to be the exact date when the Columbia Orchestra is doing its next concert, so music director Jason Love says "we thought it would be a great opportunity to do something" for this concert Saturday, March 17 at 7:30 p.m. in the Jim Rouse Theatre at Wilde Lake High School.
The green portion of this Symphonic Pops concert includes members of the Columbia-based Teelin Irish Dance Company doing selections from "Lord of the Dance" and Leroy Anderson's "Irish Suite," as well as dancing to a few Celtic songs.
Also, the Columbia Orchestra will provide the music as soprano Leigh Ann Hinton and tenor Stephen Cramer sing "How Are Things in Glocca Mora?" These two singers additionally perform "If This Isn't Love" from the Irish-themed musical "Finian's Rainbow."
Hinton and Cramer aren't restricting themselves to Irish selections, however, because they'll also perform "Old Devil Moon," as well as songs from the Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals "Jesus Christ Superstar," "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,""Evita" and "Aspects of Love."
"This concert is like the old variety shows. It's fast-paced and engaging," Love says, with the music director acting much like a master of ceremonies as he introduces the varied and in some cases decidedly non-Irish selections that also include Rimsky-Korsakov's "Dance of the Tumblers," Abreu's "Tico Tico," Johann Strauss's "Thunder and Lightning" and a sampling of the movie scores from "Jurassic Park" and "Somewhere in Time."
The Columbia Orchestra performs a Symphonic Pops concert Saturday, March 17 at 7:30 p.m. at Jim Rouse Theatre at Wilde Lake High School, 5460 Trumpeter Road in Columbia. Tickets are $22, $18 for seniors, $10 for full-time students. Call 410-465-8777 or go to http://www.columbiaorchestra.org.
Candlelight Concert Society
Just a few Irish dance steps away on the same evening, the Candlelight Concert Society has a concert that classically looks to Romania, Spain and other places that definitely are not Ireland. Korean pianist Soyeon Lee is the featured soloist for this concert Saturday, March 17 at 8 p.m. at Howard Community College's Smith Theatre, 10901 Little Patuxent Pkwy., in Columbia.
Winner of the prestigious Naumburg International Piano Competition in 2010, Lee will perform Bartok's Six Romanian Folk Dances, Sz. 56; Schumann's Davidsbundlertanze, Op. 6; Albeniz's Iberia Book 1; and Liszt's Paraphrase on a Waltz from Gounod's"Faust."
She received her bachelor's and master's degrees from the Juilliard School in New York and currently is studying for her doctoral degree at the City University of New York. Lee's blossoming career includes a Naxos recording of Scarlatti sonatas.
Tickets for the Soyeon Lee concert are $30, $28 for seniors, $12 for students and free for ages 9- 17 when accompanied by a paying adult or senior. There is a pre-concert talk by Howard Community College faculty member Hsien-Ann Meng at 7:15 p.m. Call 410-997-2324 or go to http://www.candlelightconcerts.org.
Sundays at Three
Columbia-based pianist Eun Joo Chung performs on Sunday at 3 p.m. for the Sundays at Three series, which has its concerts at Christ Episcopal Church, 6800 Oakland Mills Road in Columbia. (The Columbia Pro Cantare concert will be held at First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ellicott City at the same time.)
This South Korean native did her musical studies at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, N.Y., the Peabody Institute in Baltimore and also at institutions in Vienna and Moscow. She has won major prizes and also appeared at such lofty venues as New York's Carnegie Hall and Vienna's Musikverein.
For her upcoming Sundays at Three program, she performs Schubert's Sonata in A major, Op. 120; Brahms' Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, Op. 24; and Bach-Busoni's Toccata and Fugue in D minor.
Her return engagement at this Sunday afternoon series also has her playing four pieces by Chopin: Polonaise Fantasie, Op. 61; Nocturne in E flat, Op. 55, No. 2; Nocturne in C minor, Op. 48, No. 1; and Ballade No. 4 in F minor, Op. 52.