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Warren Philharmonic releases 2020-21 season

WARREN — A Grammy winner will join the Warren Philharmonic Orchestra for its 2020-21 concert season.

Two concerts are planned at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Warren, one on Oct. 4 and the second on April 11, 2021. WPO was forced to cancel the second concert of last season because of COVID-19 and the stay-at-home directive issued by Gov. Mike DeWine.

“We’re just praying this epidemic is going to pass and we can move forward,” Executive Director Barry Dunaway said. “We hate to sit still and not plan anything, so we’re proceeding with planning a concert season and keeping our fingers crossed.”

Music Director and Conductor Susan Davenny Wyner said, “We decided to print the brochures with the hope that by early fall we’ll be fine. … It’s so sad because we need art and music more than ever in these times, but the health and safety of everyone is the most important thing.”

The program for the canceled spring concert will be carried over to open the 2020-21 season. It will include Igor Stravinsky’s “The Firebird Suite,” Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Paris Symphony No. 31, selections from Claude Debussy’s “Nocturnes” and “Pulse,” a 2003 composition by Margaret Brouwer.

The spring concert will include a new work by Augusta Reed Thomas called “Sun Dance.” Wyner said it was a conscious choice to include the work of contemporary female composers on both programs.

“They are contrasting spirits but filled with energy and important figures in American music,” she said.

Joining the orchestra at the April concert will be classical guitarist Jason Vieaux, who won a 2015 Grammy Award for best classical instrumental solo for his album “Play.” He will perform Concierto de Aranjuez for Guitar and Orchestra by Joaquin Rodrigo.

“I had heard wonderful things about him and he teaches at Cleveland Institute of Music, so he has a local connection,” Wyner said.

Other selections on that concert will be Overture to A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Felix Mendelssohn and Symphony in C Major by Georges Bizet.

Season tickets are $50 for adults, $45 for senior citizens and $15 for students and children. Subscribers get three tickets for the price of two, giving them a ticket to each concert as well as an additional ticket to bring a friend to either performance.

Season ticket brochures can be downloaded online at www.warrenphil harmonic.org. For more information, call 330-399-3606 or email warren.phil harmonic@gmail.com.

In addition to losing the second concert of last season, the orchestra was scheduled to perform May 23 at the Robins Theatre for a concert underwritten by the John Taylor family to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Paige & Byrnes Insurance. Dunaway said the orchestra is working to reschedule that performance in September.

agray@tribtoday.com

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