Symphony of the Kootenays launches season with brace of concerts

Barry Coulter

The Symphony of the Kootenays is launching its 2017-18 season with an uplighting uprising.

“Echelon Rising: From Sticks to Strauss”

Led by artistic and musical director Jeff Faragher, the Symphony — with more than 45 musicians from the East and West Kootenays and southern Alberta, will celebrate the autumn with a brace of concerts in Cranbrook and Nelson, Oct. 21 and 22 respectively.

Beethoven opens the concert, specifically the overture to Fidelio, Beethoven’s only opera. The composer wrote four different versions of the overture for his opera, the final version being finished in 1814, now considered the standard version.

The marimba then takes over as star, with Brazilian composer and percussionist Ney Rosauro’s

Concerto for Marimba and String orchestra, one of the most popular and challenging pieces for solo percussion in the world.

The Symphony’s own Rob Maciak will handle the mallets as soloist.

The concerto contains four movements contain strong rhythmic patterns and catchy melodies. Written in 1986, it is a piece that exemplifies the highest qualities of the marimba as an instrument.

Following Rosauro, Faragher leads the Symphony into Richard Strauss’s “Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme.” Originally written between 1911 and 1917 as incidental music for an adaption of a Moliere play, the orchestral suite has come to stand alone thematically and musically as a great neoclassical work with a baroque twist.

In Cranbrook, Symphony of the Kootenays performs “Echelon Rising: From Sticks to Strauss,” at the Key City Theatre on Saturday, Oct. 21, at 7:30 p.m. The popular open rehearsals run at the theatre from 12 noon to 1:30 p.m. Youth tickets for the evening concert are available for $10, courtesy of Alpine Toyota, at the theatre box office.

The Symphony moves to Nelson’s Capitol Theatre for Sunday, Oct. 22, at 2 p.m. Admission is free for students under 18.