GBS readies for Meier's gala 40th anniversary season; reduces ticket prices
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Meier's anniversary season is the springboard for numerous celebratory GBS events, as well as a new Sunday afternoon matinee concert series that will repeat each concert in the regular five-concert Saturday subscription series in Bridgeport. Also planned is an inaugural four-recital guest artist series on Mondays in Fairfield. And in addition to an expanded schedule, the GBS is celebrating its 66th season by reducing ticket prices in all categories for its subscription season -- either on Saturday or Sunday -- at its longtime home at the 1450-seat Klein Memorial Auditorium, Executive Director Benjamin Loeb has announced. Prices for single tickets, available after Sept. 1, also have been reduced, ranging from $20 to $50 ($24 to $58 last year).
Subscriptions, which are now available, provide one ticket for each of the five regular season concerts at $200, $160, $120, $100 and $80. (Those same seats last year were offered at $210, $180, $140, $115 and $85.)
"We're making it very simple: five concerts for the price of four," Loeb said. "And the reason? Accessibility. We want more people to come to our concerts; we want to offer more opportunities to the Greater Bridgeport community to share in this adventure of great music-making as we celebrate the life and career of one of America's great conductors and teachers."
On Oct. 14, 1972, the Swiss-born Meier, who lives in Ann Arbor, Mich., conducted his first GBS concert, a portion of which will be reprised at this year's October season opener.
The 2011-12 season has been designed to reflect aspects of Meier's entire career -- spanning more than 50 years -- from his early days conducting in Europe to personal milestones in the United States and his friendships with celebrated composers past and present. Meier directs the graduate conducting program at Johns Hopkins University's Peabody Institute in Baltimore. His conducting masterwork, "The Score, the Orchestra, and the Conductor," was recently published by Oxford University Press.
"It surely will be a walk down memory lane," Meier said in a recent chat. And the orchestra will benefit greatly from the expanded schedule, he added, noting that GBS musicians will appreciate the opportunity to play more concerts together, which always helps an ensemble to hone its skills.
Special events will include a gala 4 p.m. concert honoring Meier (he'll have a view from the audience) on May 12, 2012, at the Klein featuring multiple conductors, all current or former Meier students. Celebrated vocalist/conductor Bobby McFerrin, who studied privately with Meier, has already committed to the date. An evening dinner will follow the concert. (Ticket prices have yet to be set.) On June 16, 2012, a 7 p.m. "Side-by-Side" concert will combine the GBS and members of the Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestras in a joint concert. Conducting will be Meier and the GBYO's music director Christopher James Hisey. Reserved tickets are $40; $20 for general admission seating.
Concurrently with the expansion, the GBS will embark upon an aggressive new marketing and fundraising campaign in an effort to expand its approximately $600,000 annual budget to about $850,000, said Loeb, noting that ticket sales generally provide only about one-third of the annual budget, "which is fairly standard for the industry."
HERE'S THE SCHEDULE:
Subscription concerts are Saturdays at 8 p.m. or Sundays at 3 p.m. at the Klein. All concerts will be conducted by Meier, unless otherwise noted. On Oct. 15-16, the season will kick off with "Gustav's First," featuring works by Tchaikovsky, Debussy and Robert Schumann, among others. Works from Mozart, Meier's favorite composer, will fill the "Gustav & Wolfgang" program on Nov. 12-13, with Elena Urioste featured as the soloist for Violin Concerto No. 5.
The Mendelssohn Choir of Connecticut and guest soloists will join the GBS for one of the most popular of holiday offerings: Handel's "Messiah" at the Klein Dec. 17-18. A third concert, on Thursday, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m. at the 740-seat Quick Center for the Arts at Fairfield University, will be offered for non-season subscribers; reserved tickets are $40, $20 for general seating. Loeb will be guest conductor for all three holiday concerts.
"Gustav in America," March 17-18, will feature works by friends and colleagues from Meier's past and present, including Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland, Hollywood composer Franz Waxman and John Corigliano. Closing the regular season April 14-15 will be "Gustav's Song and Dance," with waltzes, songs and opera in honor of Meier's European roots.
Also planned is a Guest Artist Recital Series on the Mondays (at 7:30 p.m.) following all concerts except October, featuring soloists from the previous weekend paired with Loeb at the piano. It will be offered at First Church Congregational (Nov. 14 and April 16) and the Quick Center (Dec. 19 and March 19), both in Fairfield. Tickets are $40 each or $128 for a subscription.
Brochures may be obtained at the GBS offices at 446 University Ave. in Bridgeport, by calling 203-576-0263 or by visiting the orchestra's new website at www.GBS.org.
Read more: http://www.ctpost.com/entertainment/article/GBS-readies-for-Meier-s-gala-40th-anniversary-1602778.php#ixzz1TH0RZydu
- Category Uncategorized
- Author Anonymous
- Created Tuesday, July 26, 2011 9:36 PM
- Updated 2 years ago