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A Cello, Sax and Brass Spectacular Set For Millennium Park May 25

A free Memorial Day Weekend outdoor music spectacular featuring faculty, students and alumni from the School of Music will be set against the scenic lakefront backdrop of Chicago's Millennium Park.

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May 13, 2008 | by Judy Moore
EVANSTON, Ill. --- For the third consecutive year, a free Memorial Day Weekend outdoor music spectacular featuring faculty, students and alumni from Northwestern University's School of Music will be set against the scenic lakefront backdrop of Chicago's Millennium Park.

"A Millennium Park Cello, Saxophone and Brass Spectacular" will take place at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 25, at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park, located just east of Michigan Avenue between Randolph and Monroe streets, in downtown Chicago. The free concert is open to the public. Seating will be on a first-come, first-seated basis, or bring a blanket to enjoy a picnic on the lawn.

Three separate ensembles -- nearly 50 cellos, a full orchestra of saxophones, and a large brass ensemble -- will perform a program ranging from Gabrieli to Gershwin, conducted by distinguished members of Northwestern's music faculty. Featured Northwestern conductors will include Hans Jørgen Jensen, Victor Yampolsky, Gail Williams and Mallory Thompson.

The first half of the May 25 concert will feature brass preludes, including Aaron Copland's "Fanfare for the Common Man," conducted by Thompson, and Giovanni Gabrieli's "Omnes Gentes," conducted by Williams. An ensemble of cellists will perform Samuel Barber's "Adagio for Strings," Scott Joplin's "The Easy Winners," Radiohead's "No Surprises" and John Lennon and Paul McCartney's "Yesterday," conducted by Jørgen Jensen. The saxophone orchestra, conducted by Yampolsky, will play Leonard Bernstein's "Candide" Overture, Reinhold Glière's "Russian Sailor's Dance" from "The Red Poppy" and George Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue," featuring pianist Paul Whitley.

During the second half of the program the brass ensemble will perform Michael Daugherty's "Asclepius," Johannes Brahms' "Festive and Commemorative Music," conducted by Northwestern graduate student Travis J. Cross, and excerpts from Richard Strauss' "Alpine Symphony," conducted by Williams. The program will conclude with Michael Martin's arrangement of Dmitri Shostakovich's "Festive Overture," conducted by Thompson.

Jørgen Jensen is a Northwestern cello professor. He has been a soloist with the Copenhagen Symphony, Danish Radio Orchestra, Irish Radio Orchestra and Basel Symphony Orchestra.

Yampolsky is the Carol F. and Arthur L. Rice Jr. University Professor in Music Performance, Conducting and Ensembles and director of orchestras at Northwestern and music director of the Peninsula Music Festival in Door County, Wis.

Williams is a Charles Deering McCormick Professor at Northwestern. She was a member (1979-98) and associate principal horn (1984-98) at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She also performs with the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra.

Thompson is coordinator of conducting and ensembles at Northwestern and a Charles Deering McCormick Professor. She also is director of bands and conductor of the University's Symphonic Wind Ensemble and annual Waa-Mu Show.

For more information about the May 25 Cello, Sax and Brass Spectacular, contact Jill Hurwitz, Communications Manager, Millennium Park, at (312) 742-1149 or jhurwitz@cityofchicago.org or the Pick-Staiger concert office at (847) 491-5441 or visit http://www.pickstaiger.org.
Topics: Campus Life