Meadows Benefit Concert Celebrates Music of Leonard Bernstein

April 19, 2011 by · Comments Off 

By Praveen Sathianathan
psathianat@smu.edu

SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts will present its “The 2011 Meadows at the Meyerson” tonight at 8 p.m. at the renown symphony center.

The concert, the 18th annual benefit, brings together the Meadows Symphony Orchestra, Meadows Wind Ensemble, Meadows Opera Theatre, and the Meadows Chorale and Meadows Concert Choir in revere of the music of Leonard Bernstein.

The program will begin with the Meadows Wind Ensemble playing “Prelude, Fugue and Riffs.” The ensemble will then perform “Symphonic Dances” from “West Side Story.” The Meadows Symphony Orchestra will start the second half of the program with “Three Dance Variations” from “Fancy Free.” The Meadows Opera Theatre and the Meadows Chorale and Meadows Concert Choir will then join the symphony to play pieces from “Candide.”

“For the first time ever, this concert will feature all four of the Meadows School’s primary ensembles – the symphony, the wind ensemble, the chorale and the opera theatre,” said José Bowen, dean of the Meadows School. “This is a wonderful opportunity for our different music groups to work together and gives more of our talented students a chance to perform on the world-class stage of the Meyerson.”

The benefit concert also honors a community leader and this year will honor Edith O’Donnell, a noted arts patron and community leader. Edith and her husband Peter founded the O’Donnell Foundation with the goal of improving arts education.

In 1994, she started the AP Arts Incentive Program to support high school students. Since the programs founding more than 9,000 students have received assistance, including last year when $14.8 million in scholarships was awarded to graduating seniors.

Proceeds from the concert will provide student scholarships for the Meadows Scholars program, which since its founding in 2008, has aimed to bring the most talented arts students to SMU.

Tickets to the concert are $20-25 for adults, $15-20 for students, and $10-15 for students, SMU faculty and staff and can be purchased at the Meadows Box Office.

Meadows Opera Theatre Delays Opening Night of “Orpheus”

February 3, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

By Bridget Bennett
brekow@smu.edu

(PHOTO COURTESY OF SMU MEADOWS OPERA THEATRE)

Thursday’s opening production of the “Orpheus in the Underworld” has been cancelled due to hazardous weather conditions.

As of now, the Meadows Opera Theatre will open the show on Friday, February 4th, at 8 p.m. in the Bob Hope Theater. The show is also scheduled for Saturday, at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

Ticketholders for Thursday night’s show will be able to attend any other performance. According to an update on the Meadow’s website, ticketholders will be receiving the “best available exchange seats,” at the performance of their choice, as same seats cannot be guaranteed.

Patrons can check the Meadow’s website for updates on Friday night’s performance, as weather may still play a role in the production.

The Meadows School of the Art’s version of “Orpheus” was written by Kelley Rourke explicitly for SMU. The Meadow’s production took Jacques Offenbach’s original work first performed in Paris in 1858 and added modern electronics and references, love scandals, and modern romance. Offenbach’s original “Orpheus” production features the Orpheus myth involving Greek gods, the underworld, and true love. SMU’s rendition also features gods and hades, but again, making them more relevant to today.

SMU’s production of “Orpheus and the Underworld” is directed by Hank Hammett, the director of Opera at Meadows. The production will also feature live accompaniment by the Meadows Symphony Orchestra conducted by Dr. Paul Phillip, choreography by Danny Buraczeski, scenic and costume design by J.J. Wickham, and Lighting Design by Joshua D. Cutler.

Stay tuned for additional information regarding tomorrow’s opening night performance.