Bethlehem Press

Monday, December 9, 2019

'Broadway Rocks': Soloists,

Wednesday, October 8, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

LV Charter High School for the Arts Touring Choir, Parkland High School Chorale accompany ASO Pops

Since the 1950's, rock 'n' roll has infiltrated everything that we know. It is so much a part of our lives and our history that now it is often referred to as "classic rock."

As high school rock bands took over their parents' garages, drum sets, electric guitars and keyboard synthesizers also began to greatly influence the music of Broadway shows.

Most theater productions on Broadway now are written to music that has a strong beat and a prominent sense of rhythm. These newer shows feature the type of songs that make us want to dance, or at least tap our toes to the music.

Classical Views: The season starts early

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

World-renowned Garrick Ohlsson, piano soloist for Allentown Symphony Orchestra opening concert

Symphony Opening Night.

It is always something to look forward to.

The summer is over. Vacations are a fading memory. Across the country, school has started. Things at work begin to get busy again. And all of us, hopefully rested from weekends at the shore or in the mountains, are ready to start a new season.

Classical Views: Three for the ages

Wednesday, April 2, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Beethoven, Strauss, Wagner fill the bill in Allentown Symphony, soloist, tribute

Beethoven. Strauss. Wagner. Three innovative composers who changed the world. Three exceptional musical compositions. Two performances in Miller Symphony Hall. One great orchestra, the Allentown Symphony, and one exciting soloist, Martina Filjak. This is a weekend of concerts April 5 and 6 that you do not want to miss.

Ludwig Van Beethoven (1770 - 1827) is a name that is now known by virtually everyone in the world. And his music, although it was written more than 200 years ago, resonates with us today.

Classical Views: 'Requiem' for Amadeus

Wednesday, March 5, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Allentown Symphony, Chorus, soloists to perform new edition of Mozart work

The story of Mozart's "Requiem" is a tragic one. He did not live to finish the piece.

We have glorified the situation through Peter Shaffer's 1979 play and Milos Forman's 1984 movie, "Amadeus," where Mozart is feverishly dictating instructions to his student, Franz Xaver Süssmayr, about how to finish the piece. Yet, I doubt it was really like that. Death is never easy, and writing a "Requiem" mass in the midst of struggling for your life is difficult to imagine.

Classical Views: Keeping score

Wednesday, January 29, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Allentown Symphony Orchestra to unreel classical music made famous by movies

Have you ever watched a film with the sound turned off? It is amazing how much the music can influence the emotional impact of the film.

Experiments have been made using different types of music with a film to see how this changes the reaction of the audience members. The same scene can make you either laugh, or cry, depending upon the music selected.

Over the years, many directors have utilized compositions by classical composers on the soundtracks of their films. Many classical pieces have become universally known because of this broad exposure.

Classical Views: Keeping score

Wednesday, January 29, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Allentown Symphony Orchestra to unreel classical music made famous by movies

Have you ever watched a film with the sound turned off? It is amazing how much the music can influence the emotional impact of the film.

Experiments have been made using different types of music with a film to see how this changes the reaction of the audience members. The same scene can make you either laugh, or cry, depending upon the music selected.

Over the years, many directors have utilized compositions by classical composers on the soundtracks of their films. Many classical pieces have become universally known because of this broad exposure.

Classical Views: The very model of a musical comedy

Wednesday, January 15, 2014 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Allentown Symphony Orchestra members set sail with New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players on 'Pinafore'

As a conductor, I have always had a fond place in my heart for Gilbert and Sullivan operettas. This interest stems all the way back to 5th grade, when my brother, who was in 6th grade, played the Captain in the Gilbert and Sullivan operetta, "H.M.S. Pinafore."

My brother always had trouble remembering the script's dialogue and lyrics to the songs, so guess who ran around the house helping out by shouting, "I am the Captain of the Pinafore, and a right good captain too," and "What never? Well, hardly ever"?

Yes, yours truly.

Classical Views: Do you love to sing?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Allentown Symphony Chorus holding auditions

I remember growing up in Pasadena, Calif., with the family gathered around the player piano in the living room having a great time singing together. Singing has always been a part of my life and it is within this type of personal engagement with music that I feel most fulfilled.

Throughout all age ranges, singing has been a positive outlet for emotions and a way to express joy. Music has that wonderful ability to convey different types of emotions. Singing is a great way to share in the music-making.

Classical Views: In a word: Midori

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Violinist makes the 'curve' from prodigy to solo career

The famous violinist Midori is coming to Allentown to solo with the Allentown Symphony Orchestra and the first question of the day is: Does anyone know her real last name?

Midori has been a remarkable violinist from a very young age. She took the route that is more often used in the rock and pop market of performing under just one name, Midori. For many years, few people knew that her full name is Midori Goto.

A grand night for revelry

Wednesday, October 2, 2013 by DIANE WITTRY Special to The Press in Focus

Acclaimed soloist, works will open Allentown Symphony classical season

Revelry /'re-vl-rç/ noun 1. lively and noisy festivities.

Opening night for a symphony series is always a challenge to program because it is customary to start the season off with a big bang. Music that exemplifies exciting concert-openers and concert-enders are critical for creating the celebratory atmosphere that people seek on this special night.