Saturday, October 29, 2016

Exploring our "Natural Legacy" Through Music

"Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy. Music is the electrical soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents." - Beethoven

Poster design by Rollan Fell

Composers try to capture the sounds of nature through music.  Storms, birds, streams, and more are explored by Beethoven in the masterful "Pastoral" Symphony No. 6.
Preview the music for the Nov. 10 concert at:
Beethoven annotated the beginning of each movement as follows:
  1. Erwachen heiterer Empfindungen bei der Ankunft auf dem Lande (Awakening of cheerful feelings upon arrival in the countryside)Allegro ma non troppo
  2. Szene am Bach (Scene by the brook)Andante molto mosso
  3. Lustiges Zusammensein der Landleute (Merry gathering of country folk): Allegro
  4. Gewitter, Sturm (Thunder. Storm): Allegro
  5. Hirtengesang. Frohe und dankbare Gefühle nach dem Sturm (Shepherd's song; cheerful and thankful feelings after the storm)Allegretto
Many will remember the Disney treatment which was controversial at the time:

Coal Creek by Sara Penny

Vivaldi's Seasons were based on poems and the music evokes harvest festivities and the horses and excitement of a hunt.

Autumn – Concerto in F Major
The peasant celebrates with song and dance the harvest safely gathered in.
The cup of Bacchus flows freely, and many find their relief in deep slumber.

Adagio molto
The singing and the dancing die away
as cooling breezes fan the pleasant air,
inviting all to sleep
without a care.

The hunters emerge at dawn,
ready for the chase,
with horns and dogs and cries.
Their quarry flees while they give chase.
Terrified and wounded, the prey struggles on,
but, harried, dies.

Sonnets for all movements:  

Music preview for Fall:

Complete Seasons starting with Spring:

Cedar Breaks columbines by Sara Penny

A gem of the opera repertoire:

Lakmé, Flower duet (Duetto) by Léo Delibes: duet video features Anna Netrebko & Elina Garanca (Lakmé de Delibes)

Opera based in India. Lakme, and her servant, Malika go to the river and gather flowers with prayers for safety for Lakme's father.

Join the Orchestra of Southern Utah on Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m., at the Heritage Center for live performance of these classical masterpieces. More info:

Classical Halloween Music Appropriate for Families

Links for music and art projects.

Symphonie Fantastique by Hector Berlioz

Camille Saint-Saëns - Danse Macabre

Night On Bald Mountain - Fantasia (1941) (Theatrical Cut)

A few more Halloween favorites:
Mussorgsky - Gnomus (Pictures at an Exhibition)

Gayane's Adagio - Khachaturian
(a haunting and beautiful piece)

Aram Khachaturian - Masquerade

Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Pierre Monteux on youtube
Fantasia version from Disney:

Bazzini’s Dance of the Goblins

Friday, October 7, 2016

American Legacy Music: What Makes Music Sound American?

Powerful Horses by Wojtek Kwiatoski
Artist: William Robinson Leigh

Foul Rope by William Leigh 

American music represents all the people who have lived here.  To capture the spirit of the west Aaron Copland used "Hoedown" music for the finale of his famous music for the Rodeo ballet.


Agnes DeMille talks about creating American ballet.  
Jazz became an American art form with the merger of African rhythms and American melodies: Caravan by Duke Ellington adds middle Eastern melodies conjuring a camel caravan across the desert with jazz musical ideas:
Gabriel's Oboe is a particularly lovely piece which was used in the movie "The Mission"
John Philip Sousa wrote many iconic marches and here is the Free Lance March:

Maple Leaf Rag performed on pianola by composer Scott Joplin:

Maple Leaf Rag performed by small ensemble.  Music is transformed by which instruments are playing and a change of tempo and dynamics:
The Orchestra of Southern Utah performs all of these pieces on their opening concert Thursday, Oct. 13, at 7:30 p.m. in the Heritage Center.  The concert includes performances by the Cedar High Advanced Orchestra and SUU Jazz Band.  More info:

poster design by Rollan Fell

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Community Music Builds Musical Family

For 20 years the Orchestra of Southern Utah has offered a recital series in Cedar City to showcase individuals and groups making all kinds of music.  We have heard all ages and music from Baroque to bluegrass.  Below are links to a few favorite performances. Join us each Tuesday in Sept. for recitals.

OSU musician Chelsea Gardner with her son and a lovely Irish lullaby:

Go Over the Rainbow with Village Voices:

Kendra Leavitt on harp and Virginia Stitt on flute perform two Irish folk tunes:

Down in the Valley to Pray with In Jubilo women's chorus and photographs of Southern Utah:

Schubert piano music performed by Christian Bohnenstengel with scenic photos:

"Stars" from Les Miserables performed by Jacob Pohsander with images from the Hubble telescope:

Adrienne Read uses her flute for a Great Train Race

Fang Shen and Nina Hansen perform a Ragtime Dance by Scott Joplin with cello duet:

Stay in Touch with Your Orchestra:

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Creating New Music and Revisiting Favorites from Orchestra of Southern Utah

The Orchestra of Southern Utah continues to commission new music for memorable concert experiences. Both new pieces became family celebrations as sisters premiered their father's work and a mother and sister played in the orchestra for the composer's premiere.

We've also added a few season favorties favorites below for your listening enjoyment.

American Suite by Keith Bradshaw
Natalie Bradshaw, violin, and Hannah Bradshaw, viola, performed the solo parts for a world premiere of their father's composition. Keith Bradshaw composed the piece for the Orchestra of Southern Utah with support from the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition at Brigham Young University and the Orchestra of Southern Utah. Xun Sun directed the OSU performance. For more photos visit:

American Suite movements:Charleston
Blue Ridge Waltz
Flibberty Jitterbug
Slow Me Down Blues
Dance Down the Barn

Video Link:

Soloists with their father and composer, Keith Bradshaw

Hannah Bradshaw, OSU Conductor Xun Sun, and Natalie Bradshaw

Polynesian Rhapsody by Jacob Lee
Last season Jacob was featured as a composer and when we were looking for music for our "Aloha Jubilee" there wasn't a suitable piece for orchestra so we commissioned new music which included choir singing in Maori. Performance by Orchestra of Southern Utah, directed by Xun Sun, Feb. 25, 2016. Choir directed by Jackie Riddle-Jackson. This piece was commissioned by the Orchestra of Southern Utah.

Video Link:

Conductor Xun Sun, Jacob's sister Katherine Maxwell, composer Jacob Lee, and his mother Caroleen Lee, OSU violinist
Jacob's extended family came to the concert to celebrate his new music.

A favorite piece for this season was from the movies.
Pirates of the Caribbean Medley by Badeit and Ricketts Video Link:

West Winds Flute Trio includes Adrienne Read, to left.

The Great Train Race by Ian Clark
Adrienne Read performed this piece in the OSU 2015 Fall Recitals. She made her flute sound like a train. Music can conjure all kinds of emotions and experiences.
Video Link:

In Jubilo performed in the Fall Recitals 2015 under the direction of Jackie Riddle-Jackson

Soundings by Janice Kimes
Sometimes music creates mystery and wonder. This vocal and piano piece explores sound with the women's choir In Jubilo under the direction of Jackie Riddle-Jackson.
Video Link:

More Orchestra of Southern Utah videos available at

Stay in Touch with Your Orchestra:

Friday, March 18, 2016

"Rhythm of Dance" with Orchestra of Southern Utah

The Orchestra of Southern Utah explores the wonderful world of music written for dancing and inspired by dancers: from the Baroque era to modern music, including a dance from China on April 21, 2016, 7:30 p.m., Heritage Center.  (Full article: )

(Photos from the NYC Dance Project, except as noted)
Ballerina Misty Copeland recreating Degas paintings.

Dancing, art, and music are great partners in expressing human emotion. Folk dances are the foundation, followed by the aristocratic dances of the Baroque and Classical era.  Ballet and modern dancing evolved and continue to redefine movement.

Baroque Besetzung Quartett of Berlin recreates Baroque era music and clothing.

Bach - Suite no. 3 in D major for orchestra, BWV 1068 - Gavotte I and II, Bourree, Gigue
The Flute Concert of Sanssouci by Adolph Menzel evokes the Classical era of Mozart
Mozart Minuetto from Symphony No. 40:

Wedding Dance by Pieter Bruegel gives the feeling of peasant dances by Dvorak.

Antonin Dvorak was a Romantic era composer from the Czech region who incorporated folk and gypsy elements into his compositions.  Enjoy this exuberant music.
Music by Liu Tieshan and Mao Yuan

Thursday, February 4, 2016

"Rhythm of Sea" with Orchestra of Southern Utah

Are you ready to head to a tropical beach?  Music can help transport you to the islands:
Poster designs by Rollan Fell.

Come and hear these pieces live with the Orchestra of Southern Utah on Feb. 25:

Performance by SUU Polynesian Club dancers and the world premiere of "Polynesian Rhapsody" by Jacob Lee, commissioned by OSU for these Feb. concerts.

Pirates of the Caribbean:

Complete Scheherazade:  featruing Katherine Maxwell as violin soloist.

Cuban Overture:

From a previous Carribbean adventure with the Orchestra of Southern Utah: The Orchestra of Southern Utah and special guests Caribbean Sound performed Archipelago by Barry Olsavsky during the Capturing the Caribbean concert on February 21, 2013, in Cedar City, Utah. The steel pan was a welcome edition to the Orchestra's annual concert, bringing the summer sun and fun to snow Southern Utah.  "I couldn't stop smiling," one patron commented.

Overview of Capturing the Carribbean concerts:

Music from Hawaii performed by Steve Downs and friends on an OSU recital:

More information on Feb.  11-13 Aloha Jubilee and STEAM Festival:

Aloha Jubilee and STEAM Festival 2016