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4 classical concerts
Year of Awesome 2016

01/07/16
By Kelly Sennott ksennott@hippopress.com



 Local symphonies, orchestras and classical music organizations have a wealth of music programming planned for this winter, from Italian opera to classical smackdowns.

 
Season for opera: Piccola Opera and Opera New Hampshire are putting on An Evening of Italian Opera at the Derryfield Performing Arts Auditorium, 2108 River Road, Manchester, on Saturday, Jan. 9, from 7 to 8:30 p.m.; visit operanh.org for more information and tickets (which are $35). Then, on Valentine’s Day at 7 p.m., Opera New Hampshire hosts a fully staged grand opera production of Aida at the Palace Theatre, 80 Hanover St., Manchester, with 37 orchestra, cast and chorus members, according to the website (palacetheatre.org, 668-5588, tickets $20-$75).
 
Honoring those who came before: During the winter months, Symphony NH is bursting with activity. In the first concerts of 2016, Jonathan McPhee will direct pieces by Stravinsky (“Pulcinella Suite”), Prokofiev (“Classical Symphony”), Ravel (“Le Tombeau de Couperin”) and Tchaikovsky (“Serenade for Strings”), all of which were written in the style of composers who came before. (For example, “Serenade for Strings” is an homage to Mozart, and “Le Tombeau de Couperin” is a nod to Francois Couperin.) The first concert is at the Concord City Auditorium, 2 Prince St., Concord, on Friday, Jan. 22, at 8 p.m. (and that day there’s a free discussion at the Concord Public Library, 45 Green St., Concord, at 4 p.m., led by long-time symphony bassist Robert Hoffman). There’s another concert Saturday, Jan. 23, at 8 p.m., at the Keefe Center for the Arts, 117 Elm St., Nashua. Tickets range from $18 to $49 for both shows. Call 595-9156 or visit symphonynh.org. 
 
Music drawings: The New Hampshire Philharmonic continues its 2015-2016 season at the Stockbridge Theatre, 5 Pinkerton St., Derry, with its annual Drawn to the Music concert, this year on Saturday, Jan. 23, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, Jan. 24, at 2 p.m. Children from throughout New Hampshire have been asked to illustrate what they think’s happening in chosen pieces — like Brahms “Symphony No. 2” and Strauss’s “Serenade for Winds, op. 7” — and audiences will see those images projected overhead while the musicians play under music director Mark Latham. Ticket are $12 to $50 and $10 for students. Visit nhphil.org.
 
Classical smackdown: The first concert of 2016 in the Concord Community Concerts series happens Saturday, Feb. 20, at 7:30 p.m., at the Concord City Auditorium. Pianist Frederic Chui will heat the winter season with a recital that pits Prokofiev against Debussy in a classical smackdown — audiences will judge who the winner is. Tickets are $18 at the UPS Store, at Gibson’s Bookstore or at the door. Call 344-4747 or visit concordcommunityconcerts.org. 





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