Jacob Joyce will perform Tchaikovsky’s “Violin Concerto” Friday night at 8 p.m. at the Ford Community & Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Avenue in Dearborn.
The Dearborn Symphony’s 48th season climaxes at 8 p.m. Friday at the Ford Community & Performing Arts Center with a snappy, upbeat program, full of passion, color, and triumph.
Beethoven’s sunny, joyful “6th Symphony” also known as his great “Nature Symphony,” opens the program. While this symphony is a musical sketch of fields and forests, a stream, thunderstorm and its passing, Beethoven intended it to be an expression of feeling more than a painting of events in the real world.
He even titled it “Pastoral Symphony or Reminiscence of Rural Life, More an Expression of Feeling than a Painting.” He gave the movements precise descriptive titles and even noted the types of birds the woodwinds represented, but also admonished: “The listener should be allowed to discover the situation. All painting in instrumental music, if pushed too far, is a failure.”
Featured soloists are the two winners of the Symphony’s Youth Artists Solo Competition held recently at Marygrove College. Korean-born Yesse Kim, 17, will perform Mendelssohn’s “Piano Concerto No. 1,” movements 1 and 3, a showpiece which demonstrates the composer’s pianistic brilliance. One of the most revered concerti of the early Romantic Era, it is virtuosic throughout and was immediately adopted by Franz Liszt, who played it all over Europe throughout his career. The movements of the concerto are played without pause, with a brass fanfare serving as the transition between them. Lovely writing for the instrument abounds at every turn, and a thrilling finale makes for a great pianistic workout.
Called a prodigy, Yesse has won many international competitions in Asia and competitions in the United States including the Yamaha Music Teachers National Association Competition in Michigan, Michigan Music Teachers Association Concerto Competition, Schoolcraft College Piano Competition, and Rosalie Edwards Music Competition. Last year, she won third place at the Kingsville International Piano Competition in Texas. Yesse studies with Panayis Lyras at Michigan State University.
Jacob Joyce, 17, will perform Tchaikovsky’s “Violin Concerto,” one of the summits of the literature and one which every aspiring virtuoso learns. One of the best known of all violin concertos, it has a very recognizable tune. Considered one of the most technically difficult works for violin, the concerto was born from a failed 3-month marriage. Following a botched suicide attempt, Tchaikovsky’s brother Anatoly took him on an extended trip to Europe where his thoughts quickly turned to composing; he wrote, “My heart is full. It thirsts to pour itself out in music.”
Winner and finalist of many competitions including the American String Teachers Association National Solo Competition, Jacob studies with Aaron Berofsky at the University of Michigan. In collaboration with fellow musicians, he has also won awards as a chamber musician, including the Downbeat Magazine award for Best High School Classical Ensemble and a performance with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble.
To conclude the program, the Dearborn Youth Symphony will join the Dearborn Symphony to perform Sibelius’ rousing “Finlandia.” An internationally recognized appeal to defy oppression, the music journeys from growling repression at the opening, through energetic striving for freedom to the joyful and triumphant hymn of celebration at the end.
To enrich the concert experience, the audience is invited to Jim Walters’ insightful and humorous preview of the evening’s music one hour before the concert — 7 p.m., free with a concert ticket.
The concert is made possible in part by the Exchange Club of Dearborn, Target Stores, and the Michigan Council for the Arts & Cultural Affairs.
The Dearborn Symphony has partnered with local restaurants to offer a 20 percent diners’ discount for ticket holders on concert nights. Reservations are recommended at Andiamo Dearborn, La Pita, The Early American Room at the Dearborn Inn, Kiernan’s & Silky’s, Parisian Bistro, The Grill at The Ritz-Carlton Dearborn, and Crave.
Call the symphony office at (313) 565-2424 for tickets —$30 to $15 for adults and $10 for students — or go to www.dearbornsymphony.org. Tickets are also available at the Ford Center box office, (313) 943-2354.