NEPA Scene Staff

Wyoming Seminary Civic Orchestra to present winter concert with Stravinsky, Prokofiev, and Beethoven

Wyoming Seminary Civic Orchestra to present winter concert with Stravinsky, Prokofiev, and Beethoven
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From a press release:

A collection of noteworthy works by three of the most significant composers of the 19th and 20th centuries will be on the program when the Wyoming Seminary Civic Orchestra presents its annual winter concert in Kingston.

Civic Orchestra Music Director Dr. Rick Hoffenberg will lead the musicians in performances featuring compositions by Stravinsky, Prokofiev, and Beethoven.

The concert will be presented on Sunday, Jan. 11 at 8 p.m. in the Seminary’s new Kirby Center for the Creative Arts (201 N. Sprague Ave., Kingston), and it is free and open to the public.

The performance will feature the Suite No. 1 for Small Orchestra by Igor Stravinsky and the Divertimento, Op. 43 by Sergei Prokofiev. Both works represent their respective composers at a crossroads in their careers. Stravinsky was making a transition from his massive ballets of the second decade of the 1900s to the smaller-scale, Neoclassical works of the 1920s. Prokofiev was moving from his early works, which earned him a reputation as an “enfant terrible,” to his more mature and more lyrical middle-period compositions.

The orchestra also will perform the Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92 by Ludwig van Beethoven, a piece that features a popular second movement. When the piece debuted in 1813, Beethoven commented that it was one of his best works, and the second movement is still frequently performed as a separate piece.

Hoffenberg, associate professor, director of choral activities, and coordinator of vocal and keyboard studies at Marywood University, holds a bachelor of arts degree from Princeton University, a master of music degree from Westminster Choir College, and a master of arts and doctorate in music from Yale University. Prior to joining Marywood University, he held positions at the University of Northern Iowa, where he directed three choirs and taught courses in conducting and repertoire, and Williams College, where he served as visiting director of choral and vocal activities. In 2005, he completed his doctoral residency at Yale University, where he served as principal assistant conductor of Yale Camerata and assistant conductor of Simon Carrington’s Schola Cantorum.

Hoffenberg has spent the past 16 summers at Chautauqua Opera, where he is a pianist, coach, and assistant conductor on the music staff. He has also worked in various capacities for New York City Opera, BMG Classics/RCA Victor Red Seal, Columbia Artists Management, the Milken Archive, and Spoleto Festival USA. As a pianist, he has performed in Chicago, New York City, and Princeton, N.J. He was the state winner, division winner, and national finalist in the 1994 MTNA Wurlitzer Piano Competition.

The 65-member Civic Orchestra, founded by area conductor Jerome Campbell in 1999, includes professional musicians, music teachers, music majors from nearby colleges and universities, talented adult amateurs, and gifted high school performers from the Seminary and area schools – an array of ages, talent, and training with a shared love of music. The Civic Orchestra is under the sponsorship of Wyoming Seminary and the Performing Arts Institute, an international program for young musicians of exceptional ability.

This performance is part of the 2014-15 Wyoming Seminary fine and performing arts program. For more information, call the Seminary Communications Office at 570-270-2192.