Two special guests and an ending like no other will highlight the Bainbridge Symphony Orchestra’s latest production: “Muses,” on stage at Bainbridge Performing Arts at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16 and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17.
In it, Mario Alejandro Torres leads the BSO in a concert that is sure to rouse the imagination.
Sergei Rachmaninoff’s beautiful and lovely “Vocalise” sets the initial tone for the concert. Then, the acclaimed soprano Cyndia Sieden will delight audience members with Johann Strauss II’s “Four Songs, Op. 27” — songs that were written as a wedding gift for his beloved bride, soprano Pauline de Ahna.
In closing, the audience will be immersed in the extraordinary tales of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade” with artist Amelia Kaiser, who will paint live alongside the BSO performance.
Kaiser said she looks forward to bringing a visual representation of this beloved tale to life. She’ll work with acrylic paint on birch wood panels, lending a natural texture to the painting that will suit the story’s subject: a rendezvous in a sultan’s palace chamber, overlooking the sea.
“My intent is to paint a diptych, completing one panel per performance — the first featuring Scheherazade and the second the Sultan, enchanted by her storytelling,” she said. “My strokes will be quick and gestural, with strong colors and bold contrast to allow the audience to easily see my progress as I work.”
The finished works will be available for purchase.
Kaiser is based in Tacoma. She studied Studio Arts at Pacific Lutheran University. Her diversity has been called her greatest creative strength — working in watercolor, pen and ink, and acrylic paint to produce commissions, original works, live paintings, murals and more.
The focus of Kaiser’s work is storytelling. She aims to leverage the ability of art to transport the viewer to a certain moment in time (real or fictional) or engage them in a particular emotion, and seeks to tell stories of individuals and communities in unexpected ways. She finds special joy in creating commissioned pieces that commemorate milestones in her clients’ lives — be that a graduation, the birth or death of a loved one, wedding or anniversary.
American soprano Cyndia Sieden, the show’s first featured guest performer, has moved easily among the baroque, classical, romantic and contemporary repertoires to worldwide acclaim.
Sieden has starred at most of the world’s great opera houses, including the Munich Bayerische Staatsoper, the New York Met, Paris’s Opéra Bastille, the Wiener Staatsoper, Barcelona’s Gran Teatre de Liceu, Brussels’s La Monnaie, and London’s Covent Garden and English National, as well as in Beijing and Australia.
Her highly praised Metropolitan Opera debut was as Alban Berg’s “Lulu,” and her success quickly led to re-engagement in 2008 for Die Zauberflöt’s “Queen of the Night,” one of her signature roles.
She has sung with many of the most renowned symphony orchestras in the world, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Atlanta Symphony, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the London Symphony Orchestra, and at New York’s Mostly Mozart Festival.
The BSO’s own Torres is a conductor, teacher and performer native to San Pedro Sula, Honduras. Currently based in Seattle, Torres made his Benaroya Hall conducting debut in collaboration with Maestros Ludovic Morlot and David Alexander Rahbee in an exciting concert with the University of Washington Symphony Orchestra.
For the past two years, he has served in a conducting fellowship with the Seattle Symphony, assisting Maestro Morlot in collaboration with artists such as Hilary Hahn and John Luther Adams. As the music director of Poulsbo Community Orchestra, he has brought a new and exciting sound to the ensemble. Outside of the United States, he has conducted performances with the Eddy Snijders Orchestra in Paramaribo, Suriname, and in his hometown with the professional Chamber Orchestra of San Pedro Sula, and Victoriano Lopez School of Music Choir.
A pre-concert chat is being offered before the Sunday show, at 2:15 p.m.
Tickets, $21 for adults, and $18 for seniors, students, military and teachers, may be purchased online at www.bainbridgeperformingarts.org, by phone at 206-842-8569 or in person at BPA (200 Madison Ave. North). Each youth receives free admission when accompanied by a paying adult thanks to the BSO’s “Youth in Music Initiative” funded by Wicklund Dental.
BPA box office hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, and one hour prior to each performance.