Minot Symphony Orchestra season 98, ‘Our Town,’ kicks off Sept. 23

MINOT, N.D. – The Minot Symphony Orchestra will open their 98th season, “Our Town,” on Saturday, Sept. 23 with musicology — the study of music — at 6 p.m. and music at 7p.m. in Minot States’s Ann Nicole Nelson Hall.

“It’s All About That Bass” is the first of the symphony’s six concert series for the 2023-2024 season. Other performance dates include Oct. 28, Dec. 9, Feb. 3 at 3 p.m., March 16, and April 27.

Programs for the 2023-2024 season include works by Bizet, Ravel, Liszt, Shostakovich, Sibelius, Copland, and more. The season will also feature two world premieres, a North Dakota premiere, works by three local composers including the winner of the annual Young Composer Competition, ND High School Soloist competition winner, and the MSU Division of Performing Arts Honors Competition winner. Featured soloists include two MSU professors of music, David Rolandson and Dianna Anderson. Also sharing the stage with the symphony this season will be the voices of the MSU Concert Choir, Minot High School Choir, and the Minot Chamber Chorale. The symphony will also feature three short films with music played by the local musicians. More information and tickets are available at www.minotsymphony.com.

“We are pleased to present this season, themed ‘Our Town,’ that highlights phenomenal musicians who call Minot, North Dakota home,” said Christine Baumann, Minot Symphony Association board president and violist. “We hope that concertgoers enjoy the varied musical selections and take advantage of all the offerings presented this season.”

The season opener on Sept. 23rd will feature music from one of the most familiar operas, “Carmen, Suite No. 1” by George Bizet. The music of “Carmen” has been widely acclaimed for brilliance of melody, harmony, atmosphere, and orchestration, and for the skill with which Bizet musically represented the emotions and suffering of his characters — a piece that any concertgoer is sure to recognize from numerous movies and commercials.

The program continues with Ralph Vaughn Williams’s “Tuba Concerto in F Minor.” The featured soloist is tubist David Rolandson. Rolandson is chair of the Division of Performing Arts, associate professor of music, and director of bands at Minot State University where he conducts the Concert Band and leads the MSU Marching Band. In addition, Rolandson teaches trombone, euphonium, tuba, conducting, and music education courses. He earned a doctorate in music education from the University of Minnesota, a Master of Music in wind band conducting from Central Washington University, and a Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Minnesota Duluth. 

Darius Milhaud’s “Suite Provençal” is a four-movement suite based on authentic folk tunes from the beautiful southern province in France, the Provence. The composer used a harmonic language respecting the popular characteristics, but that on the other hand also contains some "spicy" notes — just like the well-known "Provençal sauce!" The instrumentation is very colorful, paying a lot of attention to the different timbres of both brass and woodwinds as well as to the percussion section. The season opener will finish with Alexander Borodin’s “Symphony No. 2.”

Tickets start at $30 for adults with active military, senior, and student discounts available. Season tickets, individual tickets and Pick 6 Flex Passes are available. The Pick 6 Flex Pass includes six concert tickets for the price of five and can be used for multiple tickets to the same performance or spread out between performances. All tickets are available at www.minotsymphony.com or through the box office at 701-858-4228. Patrons are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance.

Musicology, the study of music, will begin one hour before the concert starts. Concertgoers are encouraged to attend this 30-minute engaging overview of the works being performed, the story behind the music, the composer, and historical context. It will not be held for the Dec. 9 performance.

The Minot Symphony Orchestra is a unique blend of student, community, and professional musicians from the Minot area. The symphony is directed by Maestro Efraín Amaya, associate professor of performing arts at Minot State University.

This project is supported in part by grants from Arts Midwest and the North Dakota Council on the Arts, which receives funding from the state legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

About Minot State University
Minot State University is a public university dedicated to excellence in education, scholarship, and community engagement achieved through rigorous academic experiences, active learning environments, commitment to public service, and a vibrant campus life.

Published: 09/12/23   

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