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Famous Pairs of Lovers in a Musical Valentine's Celebration with RPO

January 29, 2007

Elgar’s Romantic Cello Concerto features soloist Steven Doane

Rochester, NY –Think you and your beloved have the romance of the century?  Compare your love to that of three pairs of famous fictional couples in the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s celebration of Valentine’s Day with its Romeo and Juliet concerts on Thursday, February 15 and Saturday February 17 at 8 p.m. at the Eastman Theatre.  Guest cellist Steven Doane is the featured soloist; Maestro Seaman will hold a pre-concert chat at 7:00 p.m.

Composers Glinka, Wagner and Tchaikovsky give musical and dramatic expression to the story of three pairs of lovers in the following works: the Overture to the opera Ruslan and Ludmilla based on a poem by Pushkin; Prelude and Liebestod (Love-Death) from the opera Tristan und Isolde, inspired by the Arthurian legend; and the tragic star-crossed lovers in the Romeo and Juliet Fantasy-Overture, respectively.  English composer Sir Edward Elgar continues the mood with his gorgeous and lush Cello Concerto, Op. 85 performed by internationally renowned cellist and Eastman School of Music Professor Steven Doane.  Although this concerto was written to express the composer’s deep post-World War I emotions, the cello’s soulful qualities make it the perfect vehicle for a sense of love lost – a fitting addition to the evening’s programming.

Cellist Steven Doane has earned an international reputation as both a performer and teacher.  Praised by the San Francisco Chronicle as “a master musician of astounding attainments,” Doane travels frequently to the United Kingdom for recitals, clinics and master classes, and recently has performed concertos in Edinburgh, Scotland and Dublin.  Recital appearances with pianist Barry Snyder have included concerts at New York’s Alice Tully Hall, Boston’s Sanders Theater, two recitals at London’s Wigmore Hall, and numerous other engagements in the U.S. and the U.K.  Since 1981, Mr. Doane has been a member of the cello faculty at the Eastman School where he holds the Eisenhart Award for Excellence in Teaching.  He also was the recipient of the Piatigorsky Commendation for teaching excellence from the New England Conservatory.  A former principal cellist of the Milwaukee Symphony and the RPO (1981-83), Doane also was a member of the Naumberg Award-winning New Arts Trio during the 1980s, and was a finalist in the 1974 Tchaikovsky Competition.

Tickets for these performances are $20-$54, available online 24/7 at www.rpo.org, by phone (454-2100) and in person from the RPO Box Office, as well as at any Wegmans.  RPO Box Office hours are Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. (non-concert Saturdays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.). Wegmans is open seven days a week, 10:30 a.m.-9 p.m. A convenience fee may apply.

The Philharmonics Series is sponsored by Eastman Kodak Company and Bausch & Lomb; this concert is sponsored by Messenger Post Newspapers.  The RPO gratefully acknowledges PAETEC Communications Inc. for the PAETEC Philharmonic Partners program, which offers discounted Philharmonics Series tickets to local college students. 

Now in its 84th season, the RPO inspires and enriches the community through the art of music.  The Orchestra is passionately dedicated to outstanding musical performance at the highest artistic levels, and has a unique tradition of musical versatility, commitment to music education in the broadest sense and a deep and enduring engagement with the community.  The RPO has been honored with the New York State Governor’s Arts Award, and two recent ASCAP awards for adventurous programming.

RPO performances are made possible in part with grants from the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts, a State Agency; the State of New York; Monroe County; the City of Rochester; and American Airlines, the official airline of the RPO. 


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