(April 2007)

Contact: Dr. Todd Gabriel, Hurley School of Music, 318-869-5235, or Centenary News Service, 318-869-5120

Centenary's Hurley Orchestra to Present Final Concert April 23

SHREVEPORT, LA — Centenary College's Hurley Orchestra, directed by Dr. Todd Gabriel, will present its final and most demanding concert of the year at 8 p.m. Monday, April 23, in Anderson Auditorium in the Hurley School of Music. The concert is free and open to the public.

The program features faculty cellist Kristina Vaska-Haas playing Joseph Haydn's Cello Concerto in D Major, Opus 101. She is a cellist with the Shreveport Symphony Orchestra, instructor of cello at Centenary College and cello instructor in the Centenary Suzuki School. She received her bachelor's of music degree from the Crane School of Music in New York and her master's of music in performance
and pedagogy from Northern Illinois University. Her main teachers have been Raya Garbusova, Robert Gardner and Rodney Farrar.

One of the most beautiful concertos in the standard cello repertoire, Joseph Haydn 's Concerto No. 2 in D Major for cello and orchestra was composed in 1783. Haydn composed it for Antonín Kraft, a cellist of Prince Nicolaus Esterhazy Orchestra. The work is so romantic and chromatic that the piece's authenticity was doubted for some time. Today, most experts believe that the work is indeed authentic after Haydn's signature was discovered on the manuscript in 1951.

Felix Mendelssohn was perhaps the most remarkable of all "child prodigies" among composers: to a greater degree than even the works of the very young Mozart before him, the music he composed before reaching the age of 15 shows not only a polished technical assurance but the level of substance and sheer imaginativeness we usually associate only with the most mature creative minds. The London Philharmonic premiered his first symphony, Opus 11, five days after he turned 15. Young Felix conducted.

The Hurley Orchestra brings a youthful appreciation to this often overlooked masterpiece.