This weekend, Tulsa Opera will continue its current season with the Oklahoma premiere of "Elmer Gantry," a Grammy Award-winning opera by Robert Aldridge. Based on the eponymous novel by Sinclair Lewis and the 1960 motion picture with Burt Lancaster and Jean Simmons, this classic piece recounts the rise and fall of a charismatic but unscrupulous thrill-seeker who joins the 1920s Evangelical movement of the American Midwest. "Elmer Gantry" will be staged at Chapman Hall in the Tulsa Performing Arts Center on Friday the 28th (at 7:30pm) and Sunday the 2nd (at 2:30pm).
Tomorrow night, Saturday the 8th, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra continues its current season with an "Audience Choice Concert," which begins at 7:30pm in the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. On the program, two works by Saint-Saens ("Carnival of the Animals" and "Symphony No. 3") as well as the "Concerto for Two Pianos" by Mozart. It's sure to be a special evening of music, with the twin sisters Christina and Michelle Naughton both appearing as Guest Artists at the piano.
Tomorrow night, Saturday the 11th, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra continues its current season with a pair of beloved yet quite different masterpieces: Mozart's Symphony No. 40 and Prokofiev's Symphony No. 5. The concert begins at 7:30pm in the Chapman Music Hall at the Tulsa PAC. (You'll find more about this upcoming concert at this page from the TSO website.) We are joined today on ST by James Judd, who will be the Guest Conductor tomorrow evening.
On this edition of StudioTulsa, we are pleased to welcome Menahem Pressler, the internationally renowned classical pianist, who is best known as a founding member of the long-running Beaux Arts Trio --- and who has been described as "a national treasure" by The Los Angeles Times. A truly distinguished and esteemed German-American musician who will turn 90 later this year, Pressler has been, since the mid-1950s, a member of the piano faculty at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where he is now the Distinguished Professor of Music in the Charles Webb Chair.
On this installment of ST, we welcome the widely acclaimed mezzo-soprano Lauren McNeese, who has performed on opera stages all over the world, and who, as Opera News has noted, possesses "one of those distinctive timbres recognizable six miles away in the dark...with a sparkling quality intriguingly laced with a hint of lemon juice." McNeese made her Metropolitan Opera debut in Wagner's "Parsifal" during the 2012-13 season; she's played Giovanna Seymour in Donizetti's "Anna Bolena" with Minnesota Opera, and has also appeared with the Dallas Opera, San Francisco Opera, Ravinia Festival, Los
Tomorrow night, Saturday the 5th, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra continues its current season with a 7:30pm curtain at the Tulsa PAC. On the program are two well-known, well-loved pieces from Brahms: his Piano Concerto No. 1 and his Symphony No. 2. Our guest on ST is Steven Smith, who will be the guest conductor for this concert, which will also feature a special guest appearance by the renowned pianist William Wolfram. Smith talks about his fondness for --- and his considerable familiarity with --- these two Brahms "war horses" (as he affectionately calls them).
Tomorrow night, Saturday the 7th, the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra will begin its new season with a 7:30pm concert at the Tulsa PAC. On the program, a pair of timeless Beethoven works, Leonore No. 3 and Symphony No. 5, as well as two pieces from the outstanding contemporary composer, Samuel Adler, each of which will be presented in its world premiere: Violin Concerto and Song Cycle. This special evening will also include two guest artists, the soprano Sarah Coburn and the violinist Siwoo Kim.
On this edition of our show, we speak by phone with the pianist, composer, and bandleader Amina Figarova, who was born in Azerbaijan in 1966 and is now based in New York City. She began to study music as a child, eventually attending the Baku Conservatory, and became a classical concert pianist while still a young girl. Later she was drawn to jazz at the Rotterdam Conservatory --- and later still at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Today our guest on ST is the accomplished Polish musician Agnieszka Przemyk-Bryła, who's won several prestigious piano competitions over the years and who's also an assistant professor in the Piano Department at the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw. She'll be giving a free-to-the-public piano recital here on the TU campus tomorrow night (Wednesday the 24th) at 7:30pm; the recital, presented by the TU School of Music, will take place in the Gussman Concert Hall of the Lorton Performance Center. On the program will be music by Szymanowski, Chopin, and Rachmaninoff.