Beethoven’s 7th Symphony is one of the composer’s most beloved compositions, a groundbreaking masterpiece that contains some of Beethoven’s most memorable music. As part of it’s multi-year Beethoven symphony cycle — which has already included performances of the 2nd, 3rd, 6th, and 9th symphonies — the Columbia Gorge Sinfonietta will perform the 7th, along with Grieg’s beloved Peer Gynt Suite on Friday and Sunday, March 16 (7 PM) and 18 (2 PM). Featured soloist on the program will be soprano May Arden.
When it was premiered in 1813, Beethoven’s 7th was such a rousing success that the second movement had to be immediately encored. The Symphony is both immensely challenging and rewarding for musicians to play, and the Sinfonietta began rehearsals in November for the
performance, which also includes Edvard Grieg’s suite from Peer Gynt. Just about every music lover will recognize the “In the Hall of the Mountain King” finale from the suite.
The concert also includes the world premiere of “memoria,” written by Sinfonietta conductor and CGOA Artistic Director Mark Steighner. An intense “meditation on personal and national tragic events,” “memoria” is a musical expression of both sorrow and hope. Finally, Soprano May Arden joins the orchestra for a performance of songs by Richard Strauss and Henri Duparc. Arden is a native of the Gorge, a graduate of Hood River Valley High, Arden studied and performed opera at Portland State University. She currently studies opera in New York and Oregon and will release an album of opera, art songs and acoustic music this year.
The performances on March 16 and 18 will be in the Wy’east Middle School Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $15 for adults (18+), $10 students and children (10-17) and free for kids under 10. Tickets are available at the door or through gorgeorchestra.org