Chattanooga Now CSO gives principal musicians chance to shine in chamber series

Chattanooga Now CSO gives principal musicians chance to shine in chamber series

January 20th, 2012 by Holly Leber in Chattnow Music


Lisa Dempsey, violin, associate concertmaster; Sherry Peck, second violinist; Robert Elder, viola; Eric Reed, cello; Tyler Shepherd, double bass; Janet Hale, flute; Robert Burks, oboe; Robert West, clarinet; Eric Anderson, bassoon; Gordon James, horn.

"CSO Principals," playing Sunday in the Silver Ballroom of the Sheraton Read House, calls back a Chattanooga Symphony & Opera tradition from days gone by.

A former chamber series, "The Collage Series" was a coming together of principal string and woodwind players, 10 to 15 years ago, according to principal bassoonist Eric Anderson.

"When we brought back the chamber series, we [also brought] back the old collage concert, where it was just the 10 principal players as one of the series," Anderson said.

In fact, with such a small ensemble playing, they will be performing without a conductor, said CSO director of marketing Katie Wilson.

"The purpose of this concert is to feature the principal musicians," said Wilson, "and they have actually chosen the repertoire themselves."

The four pieces set to be played are: Serenato in Vano by Carl Nielsen, String Quintet in E Major by Luigi Boccherini, Duo for Violin & Viola K. 424 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Suite for Winds Opus 57 by Charles Lefebvre.

The principal wind and string players frequently go into schools as two separate quintets and play for students. The CSO Principals chamber music concert provides the players with the opportunity to come together, in a smaller group than a full orchestra concert, and play for an audience of more varied ages.

"This is an opportunity to look at music we don't normally get to play," Anderson said. "We come up with suggestions and agree on programs, and it gives the group the chance to break into smaller groups."

The Mozart piece, for example, would not be one typically played, as most of the school programs involve music designed for quintet. The Nielsen work was written for clarinet, horn, bassoon, cello and string bass.

"We're doing more of a true chamber show," Anderson said, "and it also gives us a chance to play with members of each ensemble, so the woodwinds will play with some of the strings and vice versa."


What: CSO chamber concert, "CSO Principals."

When: 3 p.m. Sunday.

Where: Silver Ballroom, Sheraton Read House, 827 Broad St.

Admission: $20.

Phone: 267-8583.