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Published: Thursday, 10/4/2012

BGSU to host renowned baritone as guest artist

BY SALLY VALLONGO
SPECIAL TO THE BLADE
Singer Samuel Ramey. Singer Samuel Ramey.
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Listen to Samuel Ramey's dark bass-baritone voice and experience the essence of every dark and twisted character ever conjured for the operatic stage.

Make no mistake, this notable singer has brought to life a more rounded array of personalities in his 30-year career.

But still, the thrill of danger resonates in his rich, rumbling sound. As Mephistopheles in Gounod's opera Faust, Ramey demonstrated his claim to owning the role in more than 200 different productions. He is the most recorded basso in history; you can hear his unmistakable voice on some 80 recordings.

Add to that a suave and handsome face and great acting chops and it's no surprise Ramey has ruled in important opera houses and on concert stages across the United States and around the world. This year the singer will be in evidence at the Metropolitan Opera, again, in the Franco Zeffirelli production of Turandot.

With all that experience, who better to bring the realities of live performance to would-be stars?

That, for the better part of next week, is what Ramey will do during his McMaster Guest Artist stint at Bowling Green State University. He'll meet with students and faculty from Tuesday through Oct. 12.

And on Oct. 11, at 7 p.m. in the Donnell Theatre of the Wolfe Center for Arts, Ramey will talk about his work and life in a public program. Brad Cresswell of WGTE-FM will host this free public event.

The Cassandra Ballet will share the program with the Off-Broadway Dance Company in a benefit dance concert at 2 p.m. Oct. 14 in the Maumee Performing Arts Center. The show is dedicated to veterans, with a portion of proceeds to benefit the Honor Flight Network.

The program will include excerpts from a classical ballet, Paquita, plus jazz, tap, and other dance styles. Performers from the Cassandra company will be Megan Stoepler, Maria Clark, Spring Healy, Lydia Lanzinger, Breah Dushl, and Katie Kepler.

Doors open at 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $12 at the door.

It's fall now, time for a reprise of last year's successful Bachtoberfest at 6 p.m. Oct. 12 in Trinity Episcopal Church, 316 Adams St. This year it's Part Zwei according to impresario Wayne Anthony, who may just be cooking the brats and pouring the beer that go so well with music by one of Germany's most famed composers.

Anthony also will be leading the SonoNovo Chamber Orchestra and Canticum Novuum Choral Ensemble in some classical favorites by J.S. Bach including Orchestral Suite no. 3 in D major, Cantata No. 4 ("Christ lag in Todesbanden"), and Toccata and Fugue in D minor for Organ.

Dinner is at 6 p.m. and music begins at 7 p.m. Tickets at the door for the combo are $30; music only is $15.

The Owens Community College Concert Band will present a free concert at 2:30 p.m. Oct. 14 in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts on the main campus. On the program will be a Sousa march, Rick Kirby's American Fanfare, film score excerpts from Star Trek, big band music of Glenn Miller and Earle Hagan, and more.

The Toledo School for the Arts Studio Winds will join the band in a side-by-side performance of Morton Gould's American Salute and more. William Dais will conduct. Refreshments will follow in the lobby.

Lourdes University will present its Fall Music Showcase at 3 p.m. Oct. 14 in the Franciscan Center of the Sylvania campus. Three mini-concerts will be offered by campus musical groups and soloists with a shared theme, Beginnings.

The first section will offer Lourdes music faculty, students, and guests performing solo and chamber music for piano, voice, and classical guitar.

The second segment will feature Olga Topuzova-Meade in a solo program of works by Brahms, Chopin, and Rachmaninoff. Topuzova-Meade is preparing to record her first solo CD and has appeared locally and in Europe, Russia, and her native Ukraine.

The final concert will feature the Lourdes University Chorus and Good Company Ensemble, both directed by Karen T. Biscay in a program of music by Haydn, Barnam, Britten, Powell, Rutter, and others.

A reception will follow the final performance.

TAKE A BOW: Michigan's Sphinx Organization, a not-for-profit group dedicated to introducing and encouraging interest in classical music and performance for young people of color, has won a major Japanese scholarship, the Praemium Imperiale in honor of Prince Takamatsu. The award, 5 million yen, will add some $63,000 to the Detroit-based group's budget. Sphinx, formed by Aaron Dworkin in 1997, is the first group from the United States to win this award.

Items for News of Music should be sent to svallongo@theblade.com at least two weeks ahead of the event date.



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