By T. STEPHEN WAGER COOPERSTOWN – In its third appearance at Christ Church, Fenimore Chamber Orchestra offered a brilliant beginning to the holiday season with “Festive Strings.” Before the December 3 concert began, Thomas Wolf—founder and chair of the orchestra’s governing board—paid a touching tribute to all those present who have helped in the success of the orchestra. The concert itself began with one of the most daunting and demanding works for a string orchestra that Mozart ever composed.
The Divertimento in D Major, K 136 absolutely requires nothing less than a virtuoso ensemble and was dispatched with breathtaking ease. The andante middle section treated the audience to a warm and relaxed breath before a return to the almost impossible to execute Presto (and I do mean Presto) that Mozart demands. It is more than evident that an esprit de corps exists in Fenimore Chamber Orchestra from the conductor through to all members of the orchestra.
In these days when so much strife is to be found seemingly everywhere in the world, the genesis of any new orchestra is a unifying element to the human spirit. This was how Thomas Wolf described it on August 27 during the opening celebrations of Fenimore Chamber Orchestra at its debut concert.
Mr. Wolf is Chair of the Governing Board of Directors. Certainly, many in the capacity audience at historic and beautiful Christ Church in Cooperstown must have felt the same. A sense of wonderment at the fact that Fenimore Chamber Orchestra was founded during a pandemic also pervaded the afternoon. This is no small feat considering many musical organizations folded during the pandemic. It is, much to the contrary, a tribute to the vision and tenacity of Mr. Wolf, Director of Operations Rosemary Summers and Maestro Zoltowski, not to mention the Governing Board of Directors.
MOZART CONCERT – 7 p.m. The Catskill Choral Society returns to the stage after a 2 year pandemic silence to celebrate 50 years of making music with their spring concert titled ‘How Can We Keep From Singing.’ The concert will feature the beloved Mozart Requiem accompanied by a full Orchestra. The program will begin with light choral pieces by such composers as Bernstein, Alice Parker, Samuel Barber, and Gwyneth Walker. Tickets, $25/adult. Available at The Green Earth, Oneonta, and Cooperstown Natural Foods. Hosted at The First United Methodist Church, 66 Chestnut St., Oneonta. Visit catskillchoralsociety.com
MEDICATION TAKE-BACK-DAY – 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Got unused medication? Avoid the risk of having dangerous unused medications in the house and take them to a DEA take-back-location. Otsego County location is The Otsego County Sheriff’s Office, 172 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. 607-547-4271 or visit www.facebook.com/OtsegoSheriff/?view_public_for=1219166834832301
AUDITIONS – 5 – 7 p.m. The Singers with some prior choral experience or talented high school or college students are invited to audition for the Catskill Choral Society’s spring concert of the Mozart Requiem. By appointment only. Full vaccination, booster, and masks are required. Rehearsals held Thursdays 7 – 9 p.m. UUSO’s Chapin Chapel, 12 Ford Ave., Oneonta. 607-435-7008 or visit catskillchoralsociety.com
By. T. Stephen Wager • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
Maestro Maciej Zoltowski made a triumphant return to Oneonta on November 20, 2021 with a concert of Wind Serenades by Mozart, Dvořák and Richard Strauss. It is a completely fortunate situation that so glamorous and cosmopolite a musical personality such as Maestro Zoltowski has come to grace Catskill Symphony Orchestra and Upstate New York. In just two years’ time, his efforts of international renown at orchestra building have already been shown to great effect. The concert provided a vehicle showcasing the woodwind section of Catskill Symphony Orchestra in its second offering of the 2021-2022 concert season. Preparation for such a concert requires not only daring but knowing the capabilities of the orchestra at hand, and capabilities of its individual members, and a knowledge of the repertoire that balances one work with the other.
SYMPHONY – 7 p.m. The Catskill Symphony Orchestra presents a program of serenades, both classical and romantic, by a trio of master composers: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to Antonín Dvořák and Richard Strauss. Health guidelines will be followed. Cost is $32/adult. Foothills Performing Art Center, Oneonta. Visit catskillsymphonyorchestra.org
The Glimmerglass Festival, home to the summer opera and other theater, will open Thursday, July 15 with “The Magic Flute” by Mozart.
The festival will have outdoor performances on a specially built stage, in order to accommodate
Francesca Zambello, Festival artistic and general director said in a me
dia release that the theater “reimagined” the Glimmerglass experience in order to safely showcase their works.
“While this move outdoors is primarily for the health and safety of our company members, audience members and community, it is in harmony with what people love about Glimmerglass — innovative art and performances in a beautiful location,” Zambello said. “We are extremely grateful to Andrew
Martin-Weber for making this outdoor stage possible, and we look forward to bringing amazing performances to you from the Andrew J. Martin-Weber Lawn Stage.”
The outdoor stage will be at the south part of the Glimmerglass’s Springfield Center campus, with socially distanced festival squares for spaced-out seating. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs with low profiles, so the performances can be enjoyed comfortably.
“The Magic Flute” is described by the press release as a “whimsical tale of love and wisdom with an original libretto from Emanuel Schikaneder.” It is directed by N.J. Agwuna and conducted Joseph Colaneri, with costumes by Christelle Matou.
“Il Trovatore” an epic love story which is co-directed by Zambello and Eric Sean Fogel with music
conducted by Joseph Colaneri, will open Sunday, Aug. 1.
“Songbird,” adapted from “La Perichole,” will have its first performance Friday, July 30.
“To the World” opens Friday, July 16. The show is a journey around the globe through popular musical theater hits. It stars Isabel Leonard,
William Burden, Alexandria Shiner, Michael Mayes and members of the Young Artists Program.
Eric Sean Fogel directs and James Lowe conducts.
“Gods and Mortals,” which opens Tuesday, Aug. 3, celebrates the work of Richard Wagner with
selections from some of his most popular operas, including “The Ring Cycle” and “Tannhäuser,” as well as some of his lesser known works, including “Die Feen.”
“At a time when the world can feel strikingly small — confined to a bedroom and a laptop — Wagner’s grand works remind us of feeling larger than life. His fascination with mythology and the natural world will propel us as we take the festival outdoors,” Zambello said in the media release.
The staged concert will star Eric Owens, Alexandria Shiner and Ian Koziara. “Gods
and Mortals” is conducted by Joseph Colaneri and directed by Zambello.
The season will also include “The Passion of Mary Cardwell Dawson,” a new play with music celebrating the founder of the historic and groundbreaking National Negro Opera Company and starring acclaimed mezzo soprano Denyce Graves in the title role.
Written by the Mark Twain Award-winning playwright and librettist, Sandra Seaton, the play includes selections from the repertory of the National Negro Opera Company and original music composed by Carlos Simon.
“Madame Dawson was an arts pioneer, a woman of many firsts, whose remarkable story had been all but forgotten until recently,” Graves said in the media release. “Mary Cardwell Dawson broke through incredible barriers to give voice to singers of color, creating opportunities that eventually brought them to major American opera house stages for the first time. It is an honor to champion her story — and that of the National Negro Opera Company she founded in 1941.”
Go to Glimmerglass.org for more information and to purchase tickets.
COOPERSTOWN – “The Sound of Music” and Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” will lead the 2020 season of the Glimmerglass Festival, the opera company announced today.
The festival, which starts July 11, 2020, will also include Wagner’s Die Feen (The Fairies) and Handel’s Rinaldo. Selections for the season serve as a survey for the development of these famed creators, with the slate featuring formative operas from Wagner and Handel, as well as masterworks from Mozart and Rodgers & Hammerstein.
MUSIC FESTIVAL – 7:30 p.m. Ran Dank and Soyeon Kate Lee, Piano, present selections by Mozart, Debussy, Stravinsky, Granados, others. Includes works for solo piano, four-hand piano. Cost, $25 general admission. The Otesaga, Cooperstown. 877-666-7421 or visit www.cooperstownmusicfest.org
RENAISSANCE FAIR – 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Medieval Ren fair features crafters, vendors, games for kids & adults, auctions, performances by variety of musical groups. All welcome to come in period costume. Windfall Dutch barn, 2009 Clinton Road, Cherry Valley. 518-993-2239 or visit www.windfalldutchbarn.com/renaissance-fair.html
EASTER – Noon – 1 p.m. Festivities include sack races, Easter basket toss, egg & spoon race, a surprise visit from the Easter bunny, more. Fun for all ages. Pioneer Park, Cooperstown. Call Rich McCaffrey at 607-547-5256 or visit richcooperstown.org/easter-in-cooperstown/
WOODSMENS FESTIVAL – 10 a.m.-4 p.m. A showcase of logging, sawing, and woodworking history. Includes lumberjack skill, and woodworking demonstrations, food, and music. Hanford Mills Museum, 51 Co. Hwy. 12, East Meredith. www.hanfordmills.org or call (607)278-5744 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
BALLOON FEST – 5-9 p.m. Enjoy an evening of food, music, hot air balloons with Fabulous Friday. Neahwa Park, Oneonta. Call (607)432-2941 or visit www.facebook.com/BalloonGlowFest/
ART RECEPTION – 5-8 p.m. Art exhibit with Anthony Hanakovic “The Baroque Period Revisited” working in Oil Painting, Etchings, Aquatints; Judith Lamb “Organic Matter, The Cycle of Life,” Oil Paintings; James Nefsey “Myths and Ancient Memories” photographs. On display thru 9/17. Community Arts Network of Oneonta, Wilber Mansion, 11 Ford Ave., Oneonta. Call (607) 432-2070 or visit www.canoneonta.org/calendar/
ART OF ANATOMY – 2 p.m. Discover how artists and doctors have collaborated in the study of the human body over time and what they have learned from each other. Learn it all at this lecture by artist/MD Allison Hill-Edgar. Tickets, $15. The Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown. www.fenimoreartmuseum.org/Vanitas-Dissected