Warren Philharmonic Orchestra to present a Halloween concert


By GUY D’ASTOLFO

dastolfo@vindy.com

WARREN

The Warren Philharmonic will begin its 47th season Sunday with “Halloween Spectacular,” a family concert.

As it has in past years, the Halloween concert will engage area schoolchildren with its Music in Art contest. The children are invited to draw pictures about the music performed by the WPO. Prizes will be awarded to the winning artists at Sunday’s concert.

During intermission, all children in attendance are invited to visit the orchestra in an “instrumental petting zoo,” where they can get close to the instruments and try them out.

The art contest is part of the WPO’s outreach program into schools, which includes in-school concerts.

The WPO’s season will only consist of two concerts — Halloween and spring — because of the budget crunch that has been squeezing orchestras nationwide.

The hardship has been severe, said Susan Davenny Wyner, music director and conductor of the WPO, but the orchestra has met the challenge and is returning to firmer footing. A reduction in gifts from organizations and individuals is the main reason for the downturn.

Wyner said that her musicians were dealt a 10 percent salary cut, but 5 percent of it has since been restored.

In order to survive, the WPO has embarked on new efforts to raise funds and also interest among children, including an after-school program.

Sunday’s concert will include Halloween-themed music, including: Dukas’ “Sorcerer’s Apprentice”; Mussorgsky’s “Night on Bald Mountain”; Rossini’s “Thieving Magpie Overture”; Dvorak’s “Noon Witch”; Stravinsky’s “Circus Polka for Young Elephants”; Debussy’s “Golliwog’s Cakewalk” and Beethoven’s “Prometheus Overture.”

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