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Marine Chamber Orchestra Concert, July 23, 2022 at 7:30 p.m., held at the Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center at Northern Virginia Community College in Alexandria, Va.

Photo by United States Marine Band

Summer Strings: Orchestra Concert July 23

20 Jul 2022 | Staff Sgt. Chase Baran United States Marine Band

While much of the Marine Band is abroad touring Europe, the Marine Chamber Orchestra remains in the states and will deliver its next public concert on Saturday, July 23 at 7:30 p.m. in Alexandria, Va. The performance covers an array of works spanning the 20th century, but concludes with Mozart’s indelible Eine kleine Nachtmusik.

Program & Notes

1st Lt. Darren Lin takes the podium for just his second time with the orchestra, and the former percussionist continues to enjoy diving into repertoire for strings.

The performance opens with the “newest” piece on the program, a 1989 work by Michael Daugherty called Strut. Inspired by the African-American racial equality activist Paul Robeson and his influence on the Harlem Renaissance, the composer called the fiddling buoyant and fearless, reflecting the creativity and optimism which marked the era.

“Daugherty challenges the string players to play more rhythmically, something that I am used to as a former percussionist,” Lin said.

Grażyna Bacewicz’s Concerto for String Orchestra then follows, again influenced by a figure ahead of their time. The female Polish composer was carving out a space in a male dominated field during the mid-twentieth century, making her success in her time all the more impressive. Bacewicz’s rich and varied output included cantatas, songs, concertos, solo pieces, chamber music, and ballet. Her Concerto for String Orchestra is widely considered her magnum opus or “Ninth Symphony.”

“With the Bacewicz, I feel like we are unearthing a voice that has been lost,” Lin said. “People are starting to rediscover her work, and it’s just a great piece that needs to be played more.”

The concert’s second half is inspired by Mozart – including Alfred Schnittke’s Moz-art and Moz-art à la Hayden. Schnittke was best known for his unique style of composition known as “polystylism,” where he combined music of various styles, and his ability to quote, fragment, and reassemble varied musical material is on full display in these two works.

“The two violin soloists on these pieces brought them to my attention,” Lin said. “I have a soft spot for creatives who have an unconventional and unique approach in their work. The composer found an inventive way to repurpose source material from Mozart, and I’m excited to share it with the audience!”

As a finale, the orchestra will then perform an unadulterated Mozart selection, the well-loved and joyous Eine kleine Nachtmusik.

The concert will take place at the Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall and Arts Center at Norther Virginia Community College and is open to the public, no tickets required. Free parking is available in the adjacent garage.