Youth symphony will stage weekend of performances

The musicians of the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon will perform at 7:30 p.m. today at the Performing Arts Center at Grants Pass High School, on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Southern Oregon University's Music Recital Hall and on Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater in Medford. Tickets are $5 for students and seniors and $10 for general admission. Tickets are available at Paddington Station in Ashland and Larry's Music in Medford. Tickets for the May 17 performance in Medford also are available through the Craterian Theater box office.

The members of Youth Symphony under the direction of Cynthia Hutton, YSSO Music Director and Conductor, will play the first movement of Samuel Barber's "Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 14."

Youth Symphony Co-Concertmaster Rex Bufalino, one of the winners of the YSSO's 2009 Concerto Competition, will be the featured violin soloist. A senior at North Medford High School, he joined the YSSO in 2000. He has participated in the NMHS Jazz Band and Wind Ensemble, the Britt String Academy, Britt Instrumental Jazz Camp and Siskiyou Violins.

When asked about preparing the concerto, he said, "The hardest thing to do is to come to a conclusion about what the concerto means to you and how to express that. It is an emotionally complex concerto so my interpretation of the piece has evolved greatly since I began working on it."

The concert program also will include the Youth Symphony performing the Festive Overture and two movements from "Symphony No. 5 in D minor, Op. 47" by Dmitri Shostakovich. The members of Youth Orchestra will play "Uptown Hoedown" by Ralph Ford, and arrangements of "Marche Slave, Op. 31" and "Capriccio Italien" by Piotr I. Tchaikovsky. Youth Strings, led by YSSO Associate Conductor Faina Podolnaya, will perform works by Antonio Vivaldi and Johann Pachelbel.

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