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'From Russia With Love' conclusion of MSO 30th anniversary Masterworks series

April 21, 2012|By HEATHER KEELS | heather.keels@herald-mail.com
  • The Maryland Symphony Orchestra accompanies pianist Yuliya Gorenman, performing Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 during the MSO Masterworks 5, "From Russia With Love," Saturday at the Maryland Theater in Hagerstown.
By Colleen McGrath/Staff Photographer

Music lovers young and old packed The Maryland Theatre Saturday night for a Russian-inspired finale to the Maryland Symphony Orchestra’s 30th anniversary Masterworks series.

The concert, titled “From Russia With Love,” will be repeated Sunday at 3 p.m. It features special guest pianist Yuliya Gorenman playing Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in D. Minor, followed by Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 2.

“What better way to conclude our season than with an extraordinarily gifted pianist, Yuliya Gorenman, performing one of the most challenging and demanding piano concertos ever written,” MSO Board of Directors President Doris J. Nipps said as she introduced the concert.

Many audience members said before the concert that they were particularly looking forward to hearing the piano concerto.

Melissa Mackley of Williamsport, who plays piano, said she would be listening closely to the guest pianist’s technique and her balance with the orchestra.

Mackley brought her children, Elizabeth, 12, and Christopher, 10. Elizabeth plays the piano and sings, and Christopher plays the trumpet, she said.

“So we thought that would be nice for them to hear the symphony,” she said.

Meanwhile, another young audience member, Ben Gantz, 17, of Hagerstown, said he would be listening most to the French horns.

Gantz plays French horn in the Boonsboro High School band and said he was attending the concert at the encouragement of his band teacher. He plans to double major in music and biochemistry in college.

Others in the audience were season subscribers, many of whom attended all five concerts in the Masterworks series, which began in October.

“This being our 30th anniversary season, I think there was a lot of gems in there that people didn’t realize were going to be there,” MSO marketing director Greg Evans said.

The series opened with guest violinist Nick Kendall performing “Spontaneous Combustion,” which “just brought people to their feet,” Evans said.

In November, a “Masters of Baroque” concert added variety, and a concert last month featured a rare timpani concerto, he said.

Season subscriber Tom Maschal said he was sorry to see the season come to a close.

“But it will roll around again, and we’ll be here,” said Maschal, who has been coming to the Maryland Symphony Orchestra with his wife for more than five years.

Details about next season’s Masterworks series will be announced in the coming months, Evans said.

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If you go...

What: Maryland Symphony Orchestra presents "From Russia with Love"
When: Today, 3 p.m.
Where: The Maryland Theatre, 21 S. Potomac St., Hagerstown
Cost: Tickets cost $15 to $49 for adults. Students in grades one through 12 will be admitted free. The box office opens 90 minutes before MSO concerts.

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