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Thursday, June 4, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Symphony serves up Soiree

Arbor Crest to host Saturday concert

Here’s how you mix up the recipe for Soiree on the Edge, Saturday’s outdoor concert on the hilltop at Arbor Crest Winery.

• Take one part Chamber Soiree, in which Spokane Symphony musicians break into smaller groups to perform intimate chamber music (normally at the Davenport Hotel).

• Add one part Symphony on the Edge, the cutting-edge contemporary series (normally at the Knitting Factory Concert House).

• Mix with a traditional summer concert in the open air.

The resulting hybrid promises to be bracing, not just because of the evening breezes (a tent will be available nearby in case of bad weather) but for the provocative music as well. Some of the music should be like nothing you’ve ever heard.

Here’s what’s in the mix:

• John Mackey’s “Strange Humors,” for djembe and string quartet. A djembe is an African hand drum with a distinctive hourglass shape, and a sound not often associated with chamber music.

• Steve Reich’s “Violin Phase,” in which violins initially begin playing the same musical figure in unison and then one or more gradually begin speeding up or slowing down the figure – with intriguing results.

• Paul Hindemith’s Quintet for Clarinet and String Quartet, Op. 30.

• Gyorgy Ligeti’s Six Bagatelles for Wind Quintet, described as short, lively, spirited pieces with plenty of dissonance.

• “Salonmusic,” which is the term the musicians are using to describe a collaborative medley. Music Director Eckart Preu will play keyboards along with 10 symphony members on several pieces including Knumann’s “Ungarisch,” Leemans’ “Gondoles Venetiennes,” and Roberts’ “Puszta Maiden.”

By the way, there will be no conductor, at least not formally, in keeping with the event’s chamber music configuration.

The concert will be held on the Arbor Crest lawn, so patrons are encouraged to bring blankets or lawn chairs. Arbor Crest wine will be available for sale, and listeners are encouraged to bring picnic baskets.

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