Youth Symphony performs this weekend

The three ensembles of the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 15 at the Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater in Medford and on Sunday, Nov.16 at 3 p.m. at Southern Oregon University's Music Recital Hall in Ashland.

Tickets are $5 for students/seniors and $10 for general admission, and are available at Paddington Station in Ashland and Larry's Music in Medford. Tickets for the November 15 performance in Medford are also available through the Craterian Theater's box office.

Youth Symphony principal cellist Ian Greenberg, one of the winners of the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon's 2008 Concerto Competition and a junior at Ashland High School, will be the featured soloist in a performance of Antonin Dvorak's Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104. Reflecting on the technical challenges the work presents and his year-long preparation for the performances Ian observed "the Dvorak Cello Concerto is an amazing work that showcases the range, contrast of colors and beautiful tone of the cello. The concerto also highlights many instruments in the orchestra, features an array of wonderful melodies."

He went on to say that he is "very excited to have the opportunity to perform the work with the musicians of the Youth Symphony."

The Youth Symphony will also perform Dvorak's Carneval Overture. The musicians of Youth Orchestra will play Richard Wagner's Overture to Rienzi (arranged by Sandra Dackow) and the finale of Dvorak's New World Symphony (arranged by Vernon Leidig). Youth Strings will perform works by Cornelius Gurlitt, Dmitri Kabalevsky and Ludwig van Beethoven.

Cynthia Hutton, YSSO Music Director and Conductor of the Youth Symphony and Youth Orchestra, marks her fourteenth season with the YSSO this year.

Hutton is associate professor of music and director of bands at Southern Oregon University. She is a member of the Rogue Valley Symphony and the SOU Faculty Brass Quintet. Prior to coming to Southern Oregon, Hutton served as director of bands and horn instructor at the University of California, San Diego, and was assistant conductor of the La Jolla Civic University Orchestra. She received her doctorate in conducting from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Faina Podolnaya, YSSO associate conductor, is in her eighth year with the YSSO as conductor of youth strings. Upon completion of her studies in violin performance and teaching at the Soviet Conservatory of Music she accepted a teaching position at a Kazakhstan's music academy where she worked privately with students, lectured and coached ensembles preparing for competitions and concerts. Podolnaya has been the recipient of numerous awards, including her selection as the Soviet Union's Teacher of the Year. Podolnaya teaches violin and viola.

The YSSO is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing young people with opportunities to expand their knowledge of classical music by learning and performing challenging repertoire. The mission of the YSSO is to provide exceptional performance experiences for young musicians under the leadership of professional conductors and music coaches and to foster a lifelong appreciation of classical music and the arts. For more information, please contact the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon, P.O. Box 4291, Medford, OR 97501, 541-858-8859, or visit:

Fall Concert Series Partner funding has been provided by Penny Lee Austin and Alan T. Bergstrom, and Drs. Craig Chow, William S. Epstein, Robert H. Ewing and Mark Greenberg of the Ashland Surgery Center. The Carpenter Foundation, City of Ashland, James Collier, Harry & David, and U.S. Bank have provided funding for 2008-2009 concert season performances. This project is also funded in part by the Oregon Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

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