Pops & Picnic served in Sequim, Port Angeles

Sequim High School’s Select Choir and Vocal Ensemble are set to sing in Pops & Picnic, the pair of concerts with the Port Angeles Symphony Orchestra on Friday, Sept. 28, in Port Angeles, and Saturday, Sept. 29, in Sequim.

“I look forward to the energy in the room. We’re all at a banquet together,” said Jonathan Pasternack, conductor of the orchestra.

The banquet is served at “unique venues for music performance,” he noted: Friday at the Vern Burton Community Center, the former gymnasium at 308 E. Fourth St., Port Angeles, and Saturday at the Sequim Boys & Girls Club, 400 W. Fir St.

Show time both nights is 7 p.m. and music lovers are invited to bring picnic suppers; tickets are $20 including soft drinks, coffee and dessert served up by symphony volunteers.

For information and reservations, call the symphony office at 360-457-5579. Or stop by the Joyful Noise Music Center, 112 W. Washington St., Sequim, or Port Book and News, 104 E. First St., Port Angeles.

The program features Mussorgky’s “Night on Bald Mountain,” Holst’s “Country Song” and Fauré’s “Sicilienne” from “Pelleas and Melisande,” Richard Rodgers’ suite from “Oklahoma!,” “America the Beautiful,” Sousa’s “The Thunderer” and the March from Elmer Bernstein’s “The Great Escape.”

The two Pops & Picnic concerts also promise a song from Aaron Copland’s opera about coming of age, “The Tender Land.” The Sequim High School Select Choir and Vocal Ensemble, numbering 45 singers, and the 40-voice Port Angeles High School Symphonic Choir will sing “The Promise of Living,” full orchestra beside them.

“High school students rarely have the chance to sing with a live orchestra,” said John Lorentzen, director of Sequim High’s choirs.

“This is something they will always remember.”

Violist Lauren Waldron, a recent graduate of Port Angeles High who won a music scholarship to the College of Idaho, will appear as guest soloist. Also winner of the symphony’s Nico Snel Young Artist Competition, she has chosen to play Max Bruch’s “Kol Nidrei,” a Jewish prayer.

Completing the program: the Overture from “Candide” by Leonard Bernstein, the conductor, composer and educator who said, “I cannot live one day without hearing music.” Orchestras around the world have paid tributes like this to Bernstein, whose centenary is this year.

This weekend begins the Port Angeles Symphony’s 86th season of performances. For information about the orchestra and chamber concerts from October through May in Port Angeles and Sequim, see PortAngelesSymphony.org.

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