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The upcoming Intermezzo Chamber Music Series concert was designed to showcase new faces on Utah's classical music scene, said series president David Porter, a Utah Symphony violinist.
"I wanted to do a concert that features some of the Utah Symphony's amazing new players in larger-scale works with woodwinds and strings," Porter said.
One of those pieces, Schubert's Octet in Major, is a particular favorite of Porter's and will showcase Utah Symphony associate concertmaster Kathryn Eberle, who joined the orchestra last season.
"It's one of the grandest chamber pieces ever written, and it's very demanding for the first violin," Porter said. "It sounds so lyrical and pastoral that perhaps the listener doesn't know just how hard the passagework is in the last movement."
Porter said Eberle is "one of those players who makes everything look easy and never gets feathers ruffled."
The work's other violin part will be played by Alex Martin, another recent addition to the Utah Symphony.
The program's second half is devoted to Copland's "Appalachian Spring" Suite. Copland wrote the piece in 1944 as a ballet score to be played by 13 instruments and rearranged it the next year as an orchestral suite.
In 1972, "Appalachian Spring" was published in a version fusing the orchestral suite with the original ballet. This version, written for string quartet, bass, flute, clarinet, bassoon and piano, will be performed at the Intermezzo concert.
New orchestra members taking part include violinist Claude Halter, his fiancée, cellist Anne Lee, and bassist Jens TenBroek.
The orchestra's new principal flutist, Mercedes Smith, is also in the group. "For people who haven't heard her, Mercedes' playing will be quite gripping," Porter said. "She has a gorgeous, focused sound that is hard to describe in words. When I first heard her play, it completely turned my head she's really exceptional."
Another addition to the ensemble is pianist Richard Marshall, a native Utahn studying at Rice University in Texas with pianist Jon Kimura Parker. The new players join Intermezzo regulars such as Utah Symphony violist Roberta Zalkind and cellist Pegsoon Whang.
"Appalachian Spring" will be conducted by the orchestra's associate conductor, Vladimir Kulenovic. "Vladimir is wonderfully energetic and a very skilled and talented guy," Porter said. "He always has a great idea of what he wants. His energy, virtuosity and commitment will come through in the Copland, and I'm really excited about it."
Celia R. Baker
'Appalachian Spring' in summertime
The Intermezzo Chamber Music Series presents its fourth concert of the 2012 season, featuring Utah Symphony musicians and others with Utah connections performing Schubert's Octet in F Major and Copland's "Appalachian Spring" Suite for 13 Instruments.
When • Monday, Aug. 6, 7:30 p.m.
Where • Westminster College's Vieve Gore Concert Hall, 1250 E. 1700 South, Salt Lake City.
Tickets • $18; $15 for seniors; free to students with ID.