Orchestra performs ‘American Composers Without Borders’

Orchestra of Southern Utah with Xun Sun, music director and conductor, Cedar City, Utah, dates unspecified | Photos courtesy of Orchestra of Southern Utah, St. George News

CEDAR CITY – After traveling around the world with local community and high school choirs, the Orchestra of Southern Utah returns to Cedar City to perform its second concert of the season, “American Composers Without Borders,” Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in the Heritage Center Theater, 105 North 100 East.

American Composers Without Borders - concert poster | Image courtesy of Orchestra of Southern Utah Facebook, St. George News
American Composers Without Borders – concert poster | Image courtesy of Orchestra of Southern Utah Facebook, St. George News | Click on image to enlarge

Continuing its season celebrating “Pieces of Peace,” each number, from George Gershwin to Marshall McDonald and Steven Sharp Nelson, has a unique aspect for lifting spirits and bringing joy.

Adam Lambert and Carylee Zwang, assistant conductors, are showcased with two entertaining pieces by Leroy Anderson: Lambert and the orchestra’s trumpet section will perform “Bugler’s Holiday,” a technically challenging, classical-pops piece sure to get your foot tapping; and Zwang solos on an unconventional percussive instrument, a typewriter! which will have you wishing you were the orchestra’s secretary while listening to “The Typewriter.”

The orchestra introduces new composers Chad Cannon and Mark Dal Porto with music that washes over you with pure sounds and blended chords. Chaconne for “After a Storm” by Cannon and “Song of Eternity” by Dal Porto explore the tonal range of the orchestra under the direction of OSU Music Director and Conductor Xun Sun.

Through the eyes of McDonald and Nelson, OSU performs the sounds of “Africa” with the help of Enterprise High School’s Concert Choir.  The world premiere with OSU from 2009 has inspired many around the globe. The orchestra even sold its recording in Sweden. You will dance to the drums and be swept across the Sahara with the beautiful harmonies and bold melodies of “Africa.”

McDonald continues to compose and perform in Salt Lake City and Nelson is the cellist in the internationally popular Piano Guys.

The night will end with the talents of 14-year-old Sarah Sun as she tickles the ivories with the famous “Rhapsody in Blue” by George Gershwin. From the trill of the clarinet to the last cymbal crash, the musical story captivates its audience with jazz-like orchestration. Sun received top honors in her age category in the Salt Lake Piano Competition this summer.

Event recap

  • What: “American Composers Without Borders” performed by Orchestra of Southern Utah | WebsiteFacebook | Telephone 435-233-8213
  • When: Thursday, Nov. 13, at 7:30 p.m. | Doors open at 6:45 | Lobby music by pianist Harry Taylor
  • Where: Heritage Center Theater, 105 North 100 East, Cedar City | Website | Facebook
  • Tickets: $10/adults, $5/students, 6 and older only (age restriction as concerts are recorded), $30/groups of six | Purchase at Heritage Center Box Office by telephone 435-233-8213 or online | Advance purchase recommended

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