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Arts Wrap: Gonzaga Symphony Orchestra launches season Monday

UPDATED: Thu., Oct. 14, 2021

Beginning its 2021-22 season, the Gonzaga Symphony Orchestra will open with Ludwig van Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 in E-Flat Major, Op. 55, the “Eroica,” and continue with two concertos by faculty composer Shuying Li.

Conducted by Gonzaga professor and orchestra director Kevin Hekmatpanah, the concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Monday. Tickets are free for Gonzaga faculty and students. General admission is $16; $13 for non-Gonzaga students and seniors. Attendees are required to wear masks. For more information, call the box office at (509) 313-2787 and visit

Following Beethoven, the orchestra will perform Li’s concertos, The Dryad for Flute and Orchestra and American Variations for Clarinet and Orchestra. The featured soloists during these performances will include Spokane Symphony principal flute Bruce Bodden and principal clarinet Chip Phillips, who is also an adjunct instructor at GU.

Earlier this year, Li was awarded a 2021 Discovery Grant from the Opera Grants for Women Composers program funded by the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation. Li and six other female composers will receive a total of $100,000, OPERA America announced.

The grant will support the development of Li’s opera “When the Purple Mountains Burn.” With a libretto by Julian Crouch, the opera follows Iris Chang, the Chinese American author of the 1997 book “The Rape of Nanking,” and Shiro Azuma, a Japanese soldier who participated in the 1937 Nanking Massacre. For more information, visit and search “opera grants for women composers.”

Li’s previous work has been performed by the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, American Lyric Theater, Argus Quartet, Four Corners Ensemble and Avanti! Chamber Orchestra. In addition to her assistant professorship at GU, Li is also the founder and artistic director of the Four Corners Ensemble and a postdoctoral fellow at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music.

Miss Mylar Black’s Dempsey’s reunion

Local drag legend Miss Mylar Black, aka Joe Sullivan, will join the Dempsey’s Divas for a reunion show for an evening of classic drag and comedy at the Globe Bar & Kitchen. The shows begin at 7 and 8 p.m. Saturday. Doors open at 6 p.m.

Re-entering the drag scene after a cancer-related surgery left her paraplegic, Black will take to the Globe stage to discuss the past year from injury to recovery through the pandemic.

A VIP reception at the Blind Buck will begin at 5 p.m. For tickets and more information, visit

UI fall theater opens with ‘Macbeth’

Opening their fall season, the University of Idaho Department of Theatre Arts will perform “Macbeth: Alba Gu Brath,” an adaptation of the Shakespeare classic by UI Master of Fine Arts candidates Rachael Fornarotto and K.T. Turner. Incorporating themes of ambition and violence from the original, the UI production also touches on issues of identity while highlighting historically “voices that have been manipulated through history.”

Starting Friday, the production will run at UI’s Hartung Theatre, 625 Stadium Drive, Moscow, at 7:30 p.m. Friday through Sunday, Thursday, and Oct. 22 and 24. Free to UI students, general admission tickets are $8/$20. To buy tickets, visit Tickets will also be available at the door.

Due to mature themes including death, suicide and substance abuse, organizers warn the show is not suitable for young children. For more information, visit and call (208) 885-6465.

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