News of Music: BGSU announces Festival Series lineup

Ukrainian pianist Vadym Kholodenko, the 2013 Gold Medal winner of the Van Cliburn Piano Competition, is to perform Feb. 14 as part of BGSU’s Festival Series.
Ukrainian pianist Vadym Kholodenko, the 2013 Gold Medal winner of the Van Cliburn Piano Competition, is to perform Feb. 14 as part of BGSU’s Festival Series.

Bowling Green State University’s Festival Series, a project of the College of Musical Arts, will expand and diversify further in the 2014-2015 season.

While not spangled with a major event like last year's series kickoff — northwest Ohio’s first From the Top taping — the season does include several rising-star ensembles, an internationally renowned pianist, and an opera.

Certainly the most celebrated performer to appear on the Kobacker stage in 2015 will be Ukrainian pianist Vadym Kholodenko, the 2013 Gold Medal winner of the Van Cliburn Piano Competition. He is to perform in a local debut Feb. 14.

At 28, the gifted musician is equally well known as a collaborative pianist; he won the Van Cliburn prize for chamber music as well. This year marks the launch of his performance schedule in famed halls across the United States.

Born in 1986 in Kiev, Kholodenko began studies at age 8, first at home, then in Moscow's State Conservatory. He has won top ratings in other international piano contests and has maintained a busy recording schedule.

The series opener will be The Thirteen, an a cappella vocal ensemble known for historically accurate performances of Baroque and Renaissance music. They are due Oct. 13. Also in October, on Halloween, BGSU will screen the 1931 film Frankenstein, with faculty performing live accompaniment.

The second visiting group is Project Trio. The high-energy chamber group comprising flutist Greg Pattillo, bassist Peter Seymour, and cellist Eric Stephenson will bring an eclectic program to Moore Musical Arts Center’s big auditorium. Their performance is set for Nov. 22.

For the holidays, BG Opera Theater will present Giancarlo Menotti’s wonderful Christmas work, Amahl and the Night Visitors Dec. 5 and 6, in the Donnell Theatre of the Wolfe Center for the Arts.

And to wrap up the season, pianist/​composer/​arranger Jon Cowherd will be on campus for a concert April 11. Jazz and more will be on the program.

Series tickets for the Festival Series are a better deal than individual tickets. They are on sale at 419-372-8171 or here.

BGSU has fun in store already this summer: A Sound of Music sing-a-long at 7 p.m. June 21 in Donnell Theatre in the Wolfe Center. Whether you fancy lip-synching with Julie Andrews, Christopher Plummer (heavens), a singing nun, or just want to chime in with every song, this is a good place to do it. Tickets are $15.

Can’t wait another week? Well, you’re in luck because the actual production of The Sound of Music is going up this weekend in Ann Arbor, courtesy of the Arbor Opera Co. Showtimes are 7 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Saturday in the Mendelssohn Theater inside the Michigan League, 911 N. University Ave. Additional performances will be June 20-22.

Tickets are $22-$40 at 734-763-8587 or

For a follow-up in the same historic hall, there’s Jazz at the Mendelssohn, with Christine Miller, Brendan Asante, and the Rick Burgess Trio, 7:30 p.m. Monday. Tickets are $10-$25 from the above sources.

The Metropolitan Opera announces its Live in HD series of encore screenings, four performances to begin at 2 and 7 p.m. Wednesdays in local cinemas. First up will be the stunning new version of Verdi’s Rigoletto (set in Las Vegas), to run Wednesday at Fallen Timbers and Franklin Park Rave Cinemas. Puccini’s La Rondine will play June 25; Verdi’s Otello is set for July 9, and The Enchanted Island is set for July 16. Single tickets are $12.50; a subscription to all four runs $30.

More summer concerts are on deck. The Maumee Community Band, Kevin Heidbreder conductor, will launch its free Music by the River series Tuesday on the lawn of the Maumee branch of the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library, 501 River Rd.

Music starts at 7 p.m. Tuesday and the other dates, July 15 and Aug. 5. Patrons should bring lawn chairs or blankets.

Perrysburg’s Music at the Market presents Captain Sweet Shoes, an acoustic duo onstage from 7-8:30 tonight on the lawn of the Commodore School Yard, Indiana and Louisiana avenues.

The free public series continues each Thursday, same time and place, through Aug. 28. Patrons should bring chairs and/​or blankets. The lineup includes these popular groups: Extra Stout on July 10; Hepcat Revival Aug. 7, and Haywire, Aug. 28. For a full listing: 419-324-4758 or

Find yourself in Van Wert and you could enjoy the Fountain Park Summer Music Series, now in its 12th year. The next concert will be 7 p.m. June 20, with Tom Rigney, electric fiddle virtuoso, and Flambeau, specialists in Cajun/​Zydeco/​Blues/​New Orleans sounds.

Coming June 27 will be Brass Transit, a Chicago tribute band. And on July 4, it’s the Lima Symphony Pops in a Star Spangled American Celebration. The sounds of Motown are on tap for July 11. The Van Wert Area Community Concert Band is set to perform July 18. July 25 is Scarborough Fair, a Simon & Garfunkel tribute by the Guthrie Brothers. Finally, Aug. 1 wraps up the season with a Journey tribute band from Florida,

All concerts begin at 7 p.m. in Fountain Park, on the west edge of downtown, West Main and Jefferson streets. Food is available but seating isn’t; patrons should bring chairs or blankets.

Michigan's scenic Irish Hills area has a wealth of summer series to entice residents and guests to brave the mosquitoes and listen to music under the stars. In Chelsea, Thursday nights are dedicated to local Sounds and Sights, a gathering of singers, musicians, troubadours, and magicians who perform in a dozen or so downtown sites, from 6:30-8 p.m.

The free series, now in its 10th year, runs through Aug. 14. For a complete listing, visit http://​​soundsights.

A little drive west takes you to Jackson, Mich., where the Jackson Coffee Co. presents free concerts each Friday in the summer, 7-10 p.m. In charming Hudson, Mich., Concerts in Webster Park start today and continue June 24, July 10, and Sept. 19.

And in Brooklyn, Mich., Arts in the Park will light up Friday nights, starting at 7 p.m., with free music in Swain Memorial Park. Concerts will continue through Aug. 29.

As Ballet Theatre of Toledo prepares for its second summer as U.S. host studio for the English National Ballet School summer intensive, founder Nigel Burgoine announces the availability of tuition assistance for dancers accepted into the program.

The Toledo Community Foundation approved a grant of $1,500 for use this summer. “This scholarship opportunity will help the youth of Toledo realize their potential with quality training and help enrich the community of Toledo by participating in professional scale performances,” foundation president Keith Burwell said.

Due to begin July 21 and run the week at Ballet Theatre of Toledo studios, 1124 Corporate Dr. in Springfield Township, the intensive is for intermediate students and above interested in pursuing a ballet career. Several of the students from the 2013 program have been accepted by the English National Ballet School for study in London.

For more information on the intensive or other summer programs, call 419-861-0895 or visit

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