The Pasadena Community Orchestra invites you to its first concert of the year, on Friday, Jan. 26, at 8 pm, when it will perform Mendelssohn’s “Overture for Winds,” Beethoven’s “Ah perfido!,” Op. 65 with Anita Protich as soprano soloist, and Mendelssohn’s “Symphony No. 4” under the baton of Music Director Beth Pflueger.
Felix Mendelssohn was a child prodigy. He began composing his “Symphony No. 4” (commonly known as the “Italian”) while traveling in Italy during a European tour when he was 21 years old, and he completed it in Berlin in 1833. The work is inspired by Italy’s people, landscapes and art. Mendelssohn conducted the world premiere in London at a London Philharmonic Society concert that influenced English composers for generations to come. Critics often refer to this piece as perfect.
At age 15, Mendelssohn wrote the “Overture for Winds” displaying the mature understanding for complex musical ideas he possessed at such an early age. Set in sonata form, this popular wind/band piece begins slowly and then drastically transforms into a buoyant Allegro. Originally written for one flute, two clarinets, two oboes, two bassoons, two horns, one trumpet, and one English bass horn, the piece exhibits classical counterpoint through the use of polyphonic imitation. Since its composition, the piece has been modernized to make it accessible for modern wind ensembles and performers.
From another master, and written in 1796, “Ah! perfido” (“Ah! Faithless One”) is an early work by Ludwig van Beethoven. It was written in the 18th century operatic style as a concert aria for soprano and orchestra. The work is set to verses by the great Italian poet and librettist, Pietro Trapassi, known professionally as Metastasio. It is said that in addition to being technically difficult to sing, the gut-wrenching text about fury, betrayal and feminine compassion requires a particular ability and artistry to execute well. Anita Protich will sing this piece. She is a soprano whose unique and agile voice has been heard in operatic, concert and recital appearances throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. She is a winner of the Los Angeles Phi Beta Theta Award, a Pasadena Opera Guild winner, and a Metropolitan Opera Audition regional winner and national finalist. Residing in Los Angeles, Anita uses her voice for film and television. Her credits include the Warner Bros. film “Kangaroo Jack” and independent films “Distance” and “Dogs.” She has sung for commercials for Teac, Honda, Mazda, and her voice can be heard in the animation series “VeggieTales: Larry Boy The Cartoon Adventures” and “Kid Notorious.”
The musicians of the Pasadena Community Orchestra graciously donate their services for every concert. One of the only Los Angeles area orchestras to provide fine music to the public for free, PCO is supported through generous benefactor sponsorship, board members and volunteers. As an audience member, you may meet the Music Director and other musicians at a reception following the concert. Admission is free, and no reservations are necessary.
This event will be held in the sanctuary of First Church of the Nazarene, located at 3700 E. Sierra Madre Blvd., in Pasadena (just west of Michillinda Avenue). There is ample free parking, and the venue is wheelchair accessible.
Shelter from the Storms: Pasadena Bad Weather Shelter open through March 1
Thanks for reading our post on Pasadena Community Orchestra!On another matter, the Pasadena Bad Weather Shelter is open during the current bad weather season, on nights with a forecast of 40 degrees or below and/or 40 percent chance of rain until March 1. During the 2015-2016 winter, the last season with available records, the BWS was open a total of 33 nights. It served a total of 1,941 guests — 1,423 men and 518 women.