The Kalamazoo Philharmonia will welcome a world-famous cellist in one of two concerts taking place this weekend at Kalamazoo College.
Amit Peled, an Israeli musician acclaimed for his profound artistry and charismatic stage presence, will perform with the Philharmonia at 8 p.m. Saturday, June 1, in Dalton Theatre at Light Fine Arts. The concert, titled “True Virtuosity,” features Strum for String Orchestra by contemporary composer Jessie Montgomery, and Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski’s folk-inflected piece, Concerto for Orchestra.
The Philharmonia, directed by Kalamazoo College Associate Professor of Music Andrew Koehler, is an orchestra of Kalamazoo College and the community. The group brings together students, faculty, and amateur and professional musicians. The group won the 2014 American Prize Vytautas Marijosius Memorial Award for Orchestral Programming and has produced several CDs. It also has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, and collaborated with the Bach Festival Chorus, as well as many renowned soloists.
Tickets for the Philharmonia concert will be available at the door. They cost $5 for adults and seniors, and $2 for students. Kalamazoo College students are admitted free.
The College Singers will also perform this weekend in a free concert titled “America: WTF,” exploring freedoms, fears and fairness as they relate to American democracy. The performance is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. Sunday at Stetson Chapel. Admission is free.
The choir will sing a variety of songs ranging from selections predating American colonists, to a modern rhythm-and-blues selection from Janelle Monae titled Americans. The program, while weighty, entertains and informs, through the group’s 32 singers. Songs such as Thomas Tallis’ Audivi vocem di caelo will be performed in four-part polyphony interspersed with a chant to question concepts such as Manifest Destiny. Musical theatre repertoire from Jason Robert Brown’s New World, one of his earliest works, is also presented in a quartet of K seniors.
The College Singers is led by Assistant Music Professor Chris Ludwa, who is also the director of the Kalamazoo Bach Festival. The ensemble includes music majors and non-music majors alike, offering a different approach to choral singing.