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Two Russian masterpieces and a favorite guest soloist will bring the 2013-14 season of the San Bernardino Symphony to a rousing finale May 3 at the historic California Theatre.

The evening will begin with Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 5 in E minor. Noted as the first Russian composer to make a lasting impression internationally, Tchaikovsky’s world style encompasses his exposure to European, Western and Russian music. Symphony No. 5, written in four movements, was first conducted in 1888 at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg.

This recognizable composition has been described to portray the narrative paradigm of tragic to triumphant gaining it much popularity during World War II and going on to become one of Tchaikovsky’s most popular works. Over the years, it has been used for a ballet; as background in movies and advertisements; it has been given lyrics; and has been used as the base for various instrumental arrangements. The symphony is written in four movements and has a recurring theme that is heard in each of them.

Also on the program is Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3 to be performed by piano virtuoso Norman Krieger. Highly regarded as an artist of depth, sensitivity and virtuosic flair, Krieger has appeared with major orchestras throughout the world, is a Professor of keyboard studies at the Thornton School of Music at USC, serves on many international and national piano competitions, and is the founding Artistic Director of The Prince Albert Music Festival in Hawaii. Krieger’s interpretation of Rachmaninoff’s passionate composition will surely demonstrate both the expressive capabilities of the piano and the use of rich orchestral colors. Written in three movements, Piano Concerto No. 3 was completed in 1909. It is highly respected, but also feared by many pianists as it has the reputation of being one of the most challenging ever written.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. with a pre-concert lecture available to all ticketholders at 6:30. As with all San Bernardino Symphony concerts, “MasterWorks” will be performed at the historic California Theatre, 562 W. 4th Street, San Bernardino.

Season tickets for the San Bernardino Symphony’s 2014-15 season are now also available. The up-coming season includes a diverse blend of popular and classical compositions brought together to delight audiences of many musical tastes and beginning with a season opener that, according to Maestro Frank Fetta, “.will inspire both our beloved returning audiences as well as new attendees to come and be amazed at the quality of symphonic music available right here in the Inland Empire.”

The season will also include the Symphony’s first holiday concert in many years, a concert dedicated to American musical greats Scott Joplin, Duke Ellington, and George Gershwin, and will include an array of musical selections specifically requested by audience members. Featured performers will include violinist Roberto Cani, pianist Yana Reznik, and French Horn player Joseph Ognibene, in addition to two Symphony leads, concertmaster Todor Pelev and first chair cellist Ana Maria Maldonado teaming up for a masterful Brahms Concerto.

Added Symphony Board President and former San Bernardino Mayor, Dr. Judith Valles, “We wanted to create concerts appropriate for families and friends to come and share a truly enchanting evening. …this is our heartfelt response to those many requests.”

For more information, or to purchase tickets for the May 3 or 2014-15 concerts, call (909) 381-5388 or visit the Symphony office at 198 N. Arrowhead Ave., San Bernardino. General admission tickets are also available on line at www.sanbernardinosymphony.org, and with limited availability at the theater box office the evening of each event.

Contributed Content – Dr. Anne L. Viricel

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