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SASO dances to the finish line, Civic Orchestra conductor ends run

Two local orchestras are ending their 2021-22 seasons this weekend.

SASO dances for joy

The Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra is dancing to the finish line of its 2021-22 season that was all about movement and dance.

This weekend, under the baton of guest conductor Eric Lederhandler, the volunteer ensemble will perform “Dancing for Joy,” a concert anchored in dance-inspired works by Dvorák and Moritz Moszkowski.

The Belgian conductor opens the concert with Dvorák’s spirited “Festival March”and “Slavonic Dances,” two works that are sure to get the audience tapping its toes, before Italian guest pianist Pasquale Iannone performs Moszkowski’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

The concert marks Tucson debuts for both Iannon and Lederhandler, who studied at the Brussels Conservatory and has since conducted around the world including with the Cairo Symphony Orchestra, Beijing Symphonic Orchestra, Limburg Symphonic Orchestra in Holland, and the Sewanee Orchestra in the U.S. He was recently named music director of the Jiangsu Symphony Orchestra in China and regularly gives master classes on conducting at the the Sichuan Conservatory.

Iannone comes here with a résumé of international competition wins and appearances with orchestras in Italy, the United States, South Korea, South Africa and Germany. His recordings include the music of Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff and Brahms.

SASO will perform the concert twice — at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at SaddelBrooke’s DesertView Performing Arts Center, 39900 S. Clubhouse Drive; and at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 1, at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, 7575 N. Paseo del Norte on the northwest side.

Tickets for SaddleBrooke are $30 — free for students 17 and younger — through dvpac.net; it’s $25 for the St. Andrew’s concert through sasomusic.org/buy-tickets.

COT hosts teen artists in conductor’s finale

The volunteer Civic Orchestra of Tucson is mining classic works from television, movies, opera and Broadway in its “Lights, Camera, Action” season-finale concerts on Saturday, April 30, and Sunday, May 1.

The orchestra will perform two concerts — both free to attend — that will feature winners of the 2022 Young Artists Competition.

First up is 17-year-old University High School senior pianist Jisue Choi performing the first movement of Prokofiev’s Concerto for Piano on Saturday, April 30. That concert is at 3 p.m. Saturday at Green Valley’s Valley Presbyterian Church, 2800 S. Camino del Sol.

On Sunday, May 1, 16-year-old cellist Molly Urbon-Bonine, a University High sophomore, will perform Fauré’s “Elégie,” a stand-alone work that the composer never got around to fully fleshing out. That concert is at 7 p.m. Sunday at Reid Park’s DeMeester Outdoor Pavilion at 900 S. Randolph Way, at East 22nd Street and South Country Club Road.

At both concerts, the orchestra, under the direction of outgoing Conductor Charles Bontrager, will perform music from the movies, Broadway and opera. This will be Bontrager’s final time behind the podium before he retires and Keun Oh takes over as music director designate.

Admission for the concerts is free. Details: cotmusic.org

Contact reporter Cathalena E. Burch at cburch@tucson.com. On Twitter @Starburch


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